Cleveland Williams

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Cleveland "Big Cat" Williams
Statistics
Real name Cleveland Williams
Nickname(s) Big Cat
Rated at Heavyweight
Height 6' 3" (1.905 m)
Nationality USA
Born (1933-06-06)June 6, 1933
United States
Died September 3, 1999(1999-09-03)
Boxing record
Total fights 92
Wins 78
Wins by KO 58
Losses 13
Draws 1

Cleveland "Big Cat" Williams (June 6, 1933 – September 3, 1999) was an American heavyweight boxer who fought in the 1950s through the 1970s. A Ring Magazine poll once rated him as one of the finest boxers never to win a title. He made an imposing figure, tall with an impressive athletic broad shouldered build.

Williams turned professional in 1951 and fought many of the best heavyweights of his era. He is best known for the two brutal bouts he had with Sonny Liston. Critics[who?] felt the second match was overrated and quickly over. Liston often said Williams was the hardest puncher he ever fought.[citation needed]

During the late 1950s and early 1960s the 6 ft 3 in[1] Williams was a top-rated heavyweight. His quest to obtain a title fight, however, was consistently derailed. First he was knocked out by Liston on April 15, 1959, after hurting Liston early and breaking Liston's nose.

Williams recovered from the Liston fight to score more wins, but was again stopped by Liston in 2 rounds in their rematch on March 21, 1960. His quest for the title was later stalled when he was held to a draw by Eddie Machen on July 10, 1962, and when he dropped a split decision on March 13, 1963 to Ernie Terrell, a fighter he had previously knocked out in 7 rounds in 1962. During this time frame he defeated Billy Daniels.

Williams had been inactive the entire year of 1965 while recovering from gunshot wounds he suffered at the hands of a police officer arising out of a traffic stop. Boxing reporter Jerry Izenberg adds "...shot for no apparent reason." Williams was shot with a .357 Magnum in the abdomen, barely survived, and suffered permanent kidney damage, a loss of over ten feet of his small intestine, and nerve damage from the bullet which affected his left leg above the knee, causing it to atrophy as a result. Williams didn't however bear the policeman any malice. Some[who?] thought he had resisted arrest on suspected drunk driving.

Versus Ali[edit]

It was in the above greatly diminished physical condition that Williams fought for the heavyweight championship against a peak Muhammad Ali on November 14, 1966 and was stopped easily in the third round.

Williams retired from boxing after the Ali bout, but later made a comeback. Although able to defeat journeymen fighters, he suffered several knockout losses before retiring for good in 1972. Williams finished his career with a record of 78 wins (58 KOs), 13 losses and 1 draw. George Foreman interviewed post retirement recalled Williams as one of the three hardest punchers he'd been with, stating they'd sparred when George was a rising boxer.[2] In 2003, he was ranked 49th in Ring Magazine's list of 100 greatest punchers of all time. It was all in the big famous left hook for Williams. Ring Magazine in the 80's reported he drove a forklift truck later for a while as a job.[citation needed]

In 1999, Cleveland Williams was killed in a hit and run accident.

Professional boxing record[edit]

78 Wins (58 knockouts, 20 decisions), 13 Losses (8 knockouts, 5 decisions), 1 Draw [1]
Result Record Opponent Type Round Date Location Notes
Win 24-25 Peru Roberto Davila UD 10 28/10/1972 United States Denver, Colorado
Win 7-4-2 United States Bob Mashburn KO 9 10/07/1972 United States Denver, Colorado Mashburn knocked out at 0:51 of the ninth round.
Win 28-5-1 United States Terry Daniels UD 12 11/05/1972 United States Dallas Memorial Auditorium, Dallas, Texas Texas Heavyweight Title.
Loss 63-17-2 Canada George Chuvalo UD 10 17/11/1971 United States Astrodome, Houston, Texas 93-98, 94-97, 93-98.
Loss 20-12-2 United States Jack O'Halloran SD 10 21/09/1971 United States Houston, Texas
Win 15-2 United States Ted Gullick MD 10 28/04/1971 United States Cleveland Arena, Cleveland, Ohio 46-46, 47-43, 48-46.
Loss 25-2 United States Al "Blue" Lewis TKO 4 21/10/1970 United States Cobo Arena, Detroit, Michigan
Win 21-18 Peru Roberto Davila UD 10 26/05/1970 United States Milwaukee Auditorium, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 98-94, 99-91, 97-94.
Win 11-3 United States Eddie Brooks KO 1 14/04/1970 United States Milwaukee Auditorium, Milwaukee, Wisconsin Brooks knocked out at 2:49 of the first round.
Win 5-3 United States Leroy Caldwell TKO 10 09/12/1969 United States Orlando, Florida
Loss 20-0 United States Mac Foster KO 3 18/11/1969 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas
Loss 19-0 United States Mac Foster TKO 5 13/09/1969 United States Selland Arena, Fresno, California Referee stopped the bout at 1:35 of the fifth round.
Loss 25-1-1 United States Al "Goulds Terror" Jones TKO 8 20/05/1969 United States Miami Beach Convention Hall, Miami Beach, Florida Referee stopped the bout at 0:11 of the eighth round.
Win 10-9-3 United States Charley Polite UD 10 18/03/1969 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas
Loss 44-5-1 Canada Bob Cleroux UD 10 21/11/1968 Canada Montreal Forum, Montreal, Canada 45-47, 44-49, 47-49.
Win 10-3-3 United States Moses Harrell TKO 7 07/10/1968 United States Fort Homer W. Hesterly Armory, Tampa, Florida
Win 6-7 Canada Jean-Claude Roy UD 10 06/08/1968 United States Houston, Texas
Win 15-14-2 Canada Leslie Borden KO 1 25/06/1968 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas Borden knocked out at 2:22 of the first round.
Win 8-12-2 United States Mike Bruce KO 1 11/06/1968 United States Houston, Texas Bruce knocked out at 2:22 of the first round.
Win 5-7 United States Roy Crear KO 1 21/05/1968 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas Crear knocked out at 2:42 of the first round.
Loss 26-0 United States Muhammad Ali TKO 3 14/11/1966 United States Astrodome, Houston, Texas World Heavyweight Title. Referee stopped the bout at 1:08 of the third round.
Win 26-5 United States Tod Herring TKO 3 28/06/1966 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas Referee stopped the bout at 0:25 of the third round.
Win 19-19-2 United States Sonny "Policeman" Moore PTS 10 19/04/1966 United States Houston, Texas
Win 6-4 United States M.J. Turnbow UD 10 22/03/1966 United States Houston, Texas
Win 2-1-1 United States "Big" Ben Black KO 1 08/02/1966 United States Houston, Texas
Win 19-5-1 United States Billy "The Barber" Daniels PTS 10 30/09/1964 United States Houston, Texas
Win 18-5 United States Sonny Banks KO 6 21/07/1964 United States Houston, Texas
Win 16-10-3 United States Tommy Fields PTS 10 07/04/1964 United States Houston, Texas
Win 22-7-2 United States Roger Rischer KO 3 08/10/1963 United States Houston, Texas
Win 27-10-2 United States Kirk Barrow KO 3 13/08/1963 United States Houston, Texas
Loss 30-4 United States Ernie Terrell SD 10 13/04/1963 United States Philadelphia Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 44-46, 46-44, 44-46.
Win 24-19-1 United States Young Jack Johnson TKO 10 02/04/1963 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas
Win 18-1 United States Billy "The Barber" Daniels UD 10 09/03/1963 United States Miami Beach Convention Hall, Miami Beach, Florida 97-92, 98-93, 98-91.
Win 14-7-2 United States David E. Bailey KO 5 23/10/1962 United States Houston, Texas
Draw 42-4-1 United States Eddie Machen PTS 10 10/07/1962 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas 96-96, 96-96, 97-94.
Win 20-10 United States Alonzo Johnson KO 1 15/05/1962 United States Houston, Texas
Win 24-3 United States Ernie Terrell TKO 7 03/04/1962 United States Houston, Texas Referee stopped the bout at 1:43 of the seventh round.
Win 7-15-3 United States Jim Wyley KO 1 19/12/1961 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas Wyley knocked out at 0:44 of the first round.
Win 23-8-1 Argentina Alex Miteff TKO 5 16/05/1961 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas Referee stopped the bout at 1:32 of the fifth round.
Win 22-13-2 United States Wayne Bethea PTS 10 07/02/1961 United States Houston, Texas
Win 26-16 United States Johnny Hayden KO 2 07/12/1960 United States Miami Beach Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida
Win 13-0 United States "King" George Moore KO 4 01/11/1960 United States Houston, Texas
Win 5-4 United States "Big" Ben Marshall KO 2 24/10/1960 United States Dallas Memorial Auditorium, Dallas, Texas Marshall knocked out at 2:24 of the second round.
Loss 27-1 United States Sonny Liston TKO 2 21/03/1960 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas Referee stopped the bout at 2:13 of the second round.
Win 18-1 United States Curley Lee KO 10 14/10/1959 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas Lee knocked out at 0:58 of the tenth round.
Win 13-10-1 United States Ernie Cab KO 3 26/05/1959 United States Sam Houston Coliseum, Houston, Texas Cab knocked out at 1:05 of the third round.
Loss 23-1 United States Sonny Liston TKO 3 15/04/1959 United States Miami Beach Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida Referee stopped the bout at 2:13 of the third round.
Win 10-15 United States Ollie Wilson KO 3 13/01/1959 United States Houston, Texas Wilson knocked out at 1:36 of the third round.
Win 20-6-6 United States Howie Turner PTS 10 09/12/1958 United States Houston, Texas
Win 34-14-2 United States Frankie Daniels UD 10 03/06/1958 United States Houston, Texas
Win 23-6-2 Wales Dick Richardson DQ 4 25/03/1958 United Kingdom Empress Hall, Earl's Court, Kensington, London
Win 18-12 United States Gene "Rock" White TKO 1 04/02/1958 United States Houston, Texas Referee stopped the bout at 2:38 of the first round.
Win 31-13-2 United States Frankie Daniels UD 10 03/12/1957 United States Miami Beach Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida
Win 27-16-1 United States John Holman KO 7 15/10/1957 United States Houston, Texas
Win 21-6-3 United States Bob Albright KO 7 17/09/1957 United States Houston, Texas
Win 2-6-1 United States Clifford Gray KO 1 23/07/1957 United States Houston, Texas
Win 7-2 United States J.D. Marshall KO 2 15/07/1957 United States Tyler, Texas
Win 4-5 United States Johnny Mason KO 1 11/06/1957 United States Houston, Texas
Win 8-5-1 United States Johnny Hollins KO 3 06/08/1956 United States City Coliseum, Austin, Texas
Loss 33-16-2 United States Bob Satterfield KO 3 22/06/1954 United States Miami Beach Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida
Win 8-4 United States Sylvester Jones KO 7 08/06/1954 United States Tampa, Florida
Win 18-28-2 Bermuda Jimmy Walls TKO 1 09/03/1954 United States Tampa, Florida
Win 14-15-5 United States Claude Rolfe KO 3 21/10/1953 United States Charlotte, North Carolina
Win 3-3 United States Bo Willis KO 2 20/10/1953 United States Miami Beach Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida
Loss 7-3 United States Sylvester Jones PTS 4 24/09/1953 United States Polo Grounds, New York City
Win 8-18-1 United States Keene Simmons PTS 10 02/09/1953 United States Tampa, Florida
Win 46-19 Cuba Omelio Agramonte PTS 10 12/05/1953 United States Tampa, Florida
Win 11-17-4 United States Ponce DeLeon Taylor KO 2 24/03/1953 United States Tampa, Florida
Win 6-21-2 United Kingdom Terry O'Connor KO 3 12/03/1953 United States Minneapolis, Minnesota
Win 11-16-4 United States Ponce DeLeon Taylor PTS 8 04/03/1953 United States Miami Stadium, Miami, Florida
Win 0-2 United States Abie Gibson KO 1 13/01/1953 United States Fort Homer W. Hesterly Armory, Tampa, Florida
Win 1-0 United States Graveyard Walters KO 2 08/12/1952 United States Daytona Beach, Florida
Win 8-12-3 United States Claude Rolfe KO 9 25/11/1952 United States Tampa, Florida
Win 5-0-1 United States Johnny Hollins KO 1 03/10/1952 United States Coliseum Arena, New Orleans, Louisiana Hollins knocked out at 2:48 of the first round.
Win 5-4-1 United States J.J. McFadden KO 6 23/09/1952 United States Philadelphia Municipal Stadium, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Win 16-23-1 United States Art Henri TKO 8 16/09/1952 United States Miami Beach, Florida
Win 1-2 United States Roosevelt Holmes KO 1 12/09/1952 United States Coliseum Arena, New Orleans, Louisiana Holmes knocked out at 2:10 of the first round.
Win -- Baby Booze KO 1 02/09/1952 United States Tampa, Florida
Win 5-0-1 United States Candy McDaniels KO 2 12/08/1952 United States Miami Beach Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida
Win 3-1 United States Sam Harold KO 4 25/07/1952 United States Macon, Georgia
Win 0-1 United States Lee Raymond TKO 5 22/07/1952 United States Miami Beach Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida
Win -- United States Jimmy Felton KO 3 08/07/1952 United States Miami Beach Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida
Win 0-1-1 United States Eddie Lee Williams KO 1 24/06/1952 United States Daytona Beach, Florida
Win -- Harry Turner KO 1 17/06/1952 United States Tampa, Florida
Win -- United States Paul Favrot KO 4 10/06/1952 United States Tampa, Florida
Win 1-2 Ray Brown KO 3 28/05/1952 United States Miami Beach Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida
Win 4-1-1 Johnny Fowler KO 5 15/04/1952 United States Tampa, Florida
Win 1-2 United States Ray Banks KO 1 28/03/1952 United States Coliseum Arena, New Orleans, Louisiana Banks knocked out at 1:35 of the first round.
Win 1-1 United States Roosevelt Holmes UD 6 29/02/1952 United States Coliseum Arena, New Orleans, Louisiana
Win -- Rudolph Wood KO 2 26/02/1952 United States Fort Homer W. Hesterly Armory, Tampa, Florida
Win 1-1 United States Ray Banks TKO 1 15/02/1952 United States Coliseum Arena, New Orleans, Louisiana
Win 1-4-1 United States Lee Hunt KO 3 11/12/1951 United States Tampa, Florida

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.boxrec.com/list_bouts.php?human_id=9382&cat=boxer
  2. ^ net Foreman interview watched Nov 2013

2. ALI's DOZEN, ESPN Home Entertainment/Genius Entertainment, 2007.

External links[edit]