|Real name||Kenneth Howard Norton, Sr.|
|Nickname(s)||"The Black Hercules"
"The Jaw Breaker"
"The Fighting Marine"
|Height||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|Reach||80 in (203 cm)|
August 9, 1943|
Jacksonville, Illinois, U.S.
|Died||September 18, 2013
Henderson, Nevada, U.S.
|Wins by KO||33|
Ken Norton, Sr. (August 9, 1943 – September 18, 2013) was an American professional boxer. Norton was vacated the WBC heavyweight championship in 1978 for his impressive victory over Jimmy Young, the original title holder was Leon Spinks who was stripped of the title for refusing a mandatory defense against Norton. His greatest ring victory was his split decision win over Muhammad Ali in March 1973, which is sometimes dubbed "The Jawbreaker" after Norton broke Ali's jaw during the fight. Despite losing by knockout to heavy hitters such as George Foreman in 1974 and Earnie Shavers in 1979, Norton did defeat many top contenders during his career such as Jerry Quarry, Ron Stander, Duane Bobick, Jimmy Young and Randall Cobb. His final professional contest was in May 1981, at the age of 38. Norton was well past his prime and was knocked out in the first round against Gerry Cooney. He died in September 2013 after a long battle with stroke complications, Norton was 70 years old.
- 1 Early years
- 2 Boxing career
- 3 Later media career
- 4 Family
- 5 Death
- 6 Professional boxing record
- 7 References
- 8 Bibliography
- 9 External links
Norton was an outstanding athlete at Jacksonville High School. He was a member of the state championship football team and was selected to the all-state team on defense as a senior in 1960. His track coach entered him in eight events, and Norton placed first in seven of them. As a result, the "Ken Norton Rule," which limits participation of an athlete to a maximum of four track and field events, was instituted in Illinois high school sports. After graduating from high school, Norton went to Northeast Missouri State University (now Truman State University) on a football scholarship and studied elementary education.
Norton started boxing when he was in the United States Marine Corps from 1963 to 1967, compiling a 24–2 record en route to three All-Marine Heavyweight titles. In time, Ken became the best boxer to ever fight for the Marines, and was awarded the North Carolina AAU Golden Gloves, International AAU and Pan American titles. Following the National AAU finals in 1967, he turned professional.
Norton built up a steady string of wins, some against journeyman fighters and others over fringe contenders like the giant Jack O'Halloran. He was learning and improving. But he suffered a surprise defeat, ironically just after The Ring magazine had profiled him as a prospect, at the hands of Venezuelan boxer Jose Luis Garcia in 1970. It was Garcia's career peak.
Norton was given the motivational book Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill, which, as he states in his autobiography, Going the Distance, changed his life. Shortly before he died, Norton stated "Think and Grow Rich changed my life dramatically. I was going to fight Muhammad Ali. I was a green fighter, but yet I won, all through reading this book."  Upon reading Think and Grow Rich, he went on a 14-fight winning streak, including the shocking victory noted above over Muhammad Ali in 1973 to win the North American Boxing Federation heavyweight champion title. To quote Norton from his autobiography noted above, "These words (from Napoleon Hill's Think and Grow Rich) were the final inspiration in my victory over Ali: Life's battles don't always go to the stronger or faster man, but sooner or later the man who wins is the man who thinks he can."
An article which appeared in The Southeast Missourian discussed that Norton credited Napoleon Hill's philosophy for his success. To quote from the article, "Norton says he's a believer in Napoleon Hill's philosophy, that a person can do anything he puts his mind to. 'So I train for my fights,' he says, 'mentally as well as physically. One thing I do is only watch films of the fights in which I've done well or in which my opponent has done poorly.'"
Ken Norton once said, "In boxing, and in all of life, nobody should ever stop learning!"
Versus Ali, first and second fight
'Name' opponents were elusive in Norton's early career. His first big break came with a clear win over respected contender Henry Clark. This helped get him his world recognition break when Ali agreed to a match. Joe Frazier, who'd sparred with Norton, presciently said of Ali, "He'll have plenty of trouble!" Though both were top boxers in the mid 1970s, Norton and Frazier never fought each other, in part because they shared the same trainer, Eddie Futch.
On March 31, 1973, Muhammad Ali entered the ring at the San Diego Sports Arena wearing a robe given to him by Elvis Presley as a 5–1 favorite versus Ken Norton in a bout televised by ABC's Wide World of Sports. Norton won a 12-round split decision over Ali in his adopted hometown of San Diego to win the NABF heavyweight title. In this bout, Norton broke Ali's jaw (he maintains in round eleven, though Angelo Dundee said it was earlier), leading to only the second defeat for "The Greatest" in his career. (Ali's only previous loss was to Joe Frazier, and Ali would later go on to defeat George Foreman to regain the heavyweight title in 1974.)
Almost six months later, at The Forum in Inglewood, California, on September 10, 1973, Ali avenged the Norton loss, but only just, when he got the return by a split decision. Norton weighed in at 205 lbs (5 pounds lighter than his first match with Ali) and boxing scribes discussed that his preparation was too intense and that perhaps he had overtrained. There were some furious exchanges in this hard-fought battle. From Ali's point of view, a loss here would have seriously dented his claim of ever being "The Greatest."
Championship challenge against Foreman
In 1974, Norton fought George Foreman for the world heavyweight championship but was stopped in two rounds at Poliedro of Caracas, Venezuela. After an even first round, Foreman staggered Norton with an uppercut a minute into round two, buckling him into the ropes. Norton did not hit the canvas, but continued on wobbly legs, clearly not having recovered, and shortly he went down a further two times in quick succession, with the referee intervening and stopping the fight. This fight would became known as the "Caracas Caper".
In 1975, Norton regained the NABF heavyweight title when he impressively defeated Jerry Quarry by TKO in the fifth round. Norton then avenged his above-mentioned 1970 loss to Jose Luis Garcia by decisively knocking out Garcia in round five.
Third Ali match
On September 28, 1976, at Yankee Stadium in New York City, Norton would again fight Ali, who was now the world heavyweight champion since regaining the title with an eighth-round knockout of George Foreman in 1974. Many observers have felt this was the beginning of Ali's decline as a boxer. It was a tough bruising battle for Ali. In one of the most disputed fights in history, the fight was even on the judges' scorecards going into the final round, which Ali won on both the referee's and judges' scorecards to retain the world heavyweight championship. The judges scored the bout 8–7 for Ali, and the referee scored it 8–6 for Ali. At the end of the last round, the commentator announced he would be "very surprised" if Norton has not won the fight.
At the time of the third Ali-Norton bout, the last time a heavyweight champion had lost the title by decision was Max Baer to Jim Braddock 41 years earlier, and Ali-Norton III did not set a new marker. The January 1998 issue of Boxing Monthly listed Ali-Norton as the fifth most disputed title fight decision in boxing history. The unofficial UPI scorecard was 8–7 for Norton, and the unofficial AP scorecard was 9–6 for Ali.
But Ali had received a pounding. His tactics were to try to push Norton back, but they had failed. He'd refused to 'dance' until the 11th when in sheer desperation, although the crowd massively roared its appreciation. Norton has said the third fight with Ali was the last boxing match for which he was fully motivated, owing to his disappointment at having lost a fight he believed he had clearly won.
Aftermath: Norton becomes champion
1977 was a top year for Norton. He knocked out previously unbeaten top prospect Duane Bobick in just one round. Then dispatched European title holder Lorenzo Zannon in a 'tune-up' fight. Light hitting but fast Zannon was actually well ahead until a burst of heavy punches put him down and out. Norton next beat polished number two contender Jimmy Young (who himself had beaten George Foreman and Ron Lyle) in a 15-round split decision in a WBC big mandatory title-elimination fight, with the winner to face reigning WBC champion Ali, but Ali's camp told Ring Magazine they did not want to fight Norton for a fourth time. Both boxers fought a smart fight Norton pressing using a heavy body attack whilst Young moved well and countered. Many observers thought the decision controversial, most split decisions are by definition close.
Plans, however, changed on February 15, 1978. On that night, in front of a nationwide television audience, Ali lost his title to Leon Spinks. The WBC then ordered a match between the new champion and its number one contender, but Spinks chose instead to give the fallen champion the first shot at taking his title rather than face the still dangerous Norton. The WBC responded on March 18, 1978, by retroactively giving title fight status to Norton's victory over Young the year before and awarded Norton their championship, which split the heavyweight championship for the first time since Jimmy Ellis and Joe Frazier were both recognized as champions in the early 1970s.
Larry Holmes title fight
In his first defense of the WBC title on June 9, 1978, Norton and new #1 contender Larry Holmes met in a classic fight. After 15 brutal rounds, Holmes was awarded the title via an extremely close split decision. The three judges' cards were as follows: 143–142 for Holmes, 143–142 for Holmes, and 143–142 for Norton. The Associated Press scored it 143–142 for Norton. The March 2001 edition of The Ring magazine listed the final round of the Holmes-Norton bout as the 7th most exciting round in boxing history. As noted above, Holmes-Norton is ranked as the 10th greatest heavyweight fight of all time by Monte D. Cox, a member of the International Boxing Research Organization (IBRO). Holmes went on to become the third-longest reigning world heavyweight champion in the history of boxing, behind Joe Louis and Wladimir Klitschko. Years later, Holmes wrote of his experience that this was his toughest match in over 70 contests.
After losing to Holmes, Norton won his next fight by knockout over sixth-ranked Randy Stephens in 1978 before taking on Earnie Shavers in another compulsory. WBC title eliminator fight in Las Vegas on March 23, 1979. It appeared for the first time that Norton's career had perhaps hit a decline, as Shavers took the former champion out in the first round. But it also created a permanent view that his confidence wasn't good against really big hitters, the main three being Foreman, Shavers and later Cooney. Although Norton himself always denied this. (Norton's peak was 1973–1978.)
In his next fight, he fought to a draw with unheralded but durable lower ranked contender Scott LeDoux at the Met Center in Minneapolis. Norton carried the day until sustaining an injury when he took a thumb in the eye in the eighth round, which immediately changed the bout. LeDoux rallied from that point and Norton became decidedly fatigued. Norton was down two times in the final round, resulting in the draw; Norton fell behind on one scorecard, kept his lead on the second, and dropped to even on the third (the unofficial AP scorecard was 5–3–2 Norton).
After the fight, Norton decided that at 37 it was time to retire from boxing. However, not satisfied with the way he had gone out, Norton returned to the ring to face the undefeated Randall "Tex" Cobb in Cobb's home state of Texas on November 7, 1980. In a back-and-forth fight, Norton escaped with a split decision, with referee Tony Perez and judge Chuck Hassett voting in his favor and judge Arlen Bynum giving the fight to Cobb.
The win over the title-contending Cobb gave Norton another shot at a potential title-fight, and on May 11, 1981. at Madison Square Garden he stepped into the ring with top contender Gerry Cooney, who, like Cobb, was undefeated entering the fight. Very early in the fight it became clear that Norton was no longer the caliber of fighter he once was, as Cooney's first punch caused Norton's legs to buckle. Norton continued to take shots from Cooney in his corner for nearly a full minute before Perez, who refereed his last fight, stepped in to stop the bout 54 seconds in, as Norton was slumped in his corner. Norton decided to retire following the match and turned his attention to charitable pursuits. Norton's enduring legacy as a fighter is that he is considered second to Joe Frazier as Ali's main nemesis and toughest opponent. Norton fought Ali to three decisions and was never hurt or knocked down. All three bouts were close and subject to controversy. Unfortunately, Norton was less successful against three of the greatest punchers of all time, losing by KO to Foreman and Shavers and by TKO to Cooney. Norton was considered past his prime in boxing from 1979 to 1981.
Awards and recognitions
Ken Norton is a 1989 inductee of the World Boxing Hall of Fame, a 1992 inductee of the International Boxing Hall of Fame, a 2004 inductee into the United States Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame, and a 2008 inductee into the WBC Hall of Fame.
The 1998 holiday issue of The Ring ranked Norton #22 among "The 50 Greatest Heavyweights of All Time." Norton received the Boxing Writers Association of America J. Niel trophy for "Fighter of the Year" in 1977.
Norton, a proponent of motivational author Napoleon Hill's writings  (e.g. Think and Grow Rich  as noted above and Success Through A Positive Mental Attitude by Hill and W. Clement Stone) also received the "Napoleon Hill Award" for positive thinking in 1973.
In 2001, Norton was inducted by the San Diego Hall of Champions into the Breitbard Hall of Fame honoring San Diego's finest athletes both on and off the playing surface. Norton was also inducted into the Marine Corps Hall of Fame in 2004 and into the California Sports Hall of Fame in 2011.
Norton was a forward-pressing fighter/boxer who was notable for his unusual guard/stance characterised by arms held crosswise. The left arm low across the torso and right hand up by the right or left ear. But when under heavy pressure both arms were brought up high across at face level whilst one leant forward. This left the opponent little target in theory. The guard was also used by the legendary Archie Moore. George Foreman later used it very effectively during his famous comeback years. Tim Witherspoon was another practitioner. Joe Frazier even borrowed it for occasions in his third Ali match. The style is named the "cross-armed defense". It tends to look crablike. Norton would bob and weave from a crouch, firing well placed heavy punches. Norton was best when advancing. He'd drag or slide the right foot along from behind. By comparison, most conventional boxers have elbows in at the torso with forearms vertically parallel to each another, the gloves then being both near sides of the face. Most trainers believe the conventional style is a better defense and that the cross-arm style leaves the user open far too often.
But Norton's style was in itself fascinating. He gave Ali more trouble than anyone else in history over three contests – no small feat by any standard. He could, as they say in the trade, 'box' or 'fight'. Norton was never fazed by Ali's various famous tactics like clinching or rope-a-dope. In fact, Ali usually found rope-a-dope a particularly unpleasant experience with Norton, as Ken would get many punches through. He seemed to have a unique ability here. Then Ali's famous clinching and holding or launching sharp shots from a distance were all for various reasons not as effective as when Ali fought Frazier, the only other man he fought three times.
Angelo Dundee wrote that Ken's best punch was the left hook. Many others lauded his infamous overhand right. In a Ring Magazine article, Norton himself said that a right uppercut to Jerry Quarry was the hardest blow he recalled landing.
Unlike many boxers, Norton would often not attempt to stare down an opponent while announcements were made before the match started. Instead, he'd often look down at the floor and gather his thoughts. He was also widely noted for his fine athletic build.
Later media career
During the height of his boxing career, Norton started to appear in feature films. After two uncredited appearances in the early 1970s, he played the title characters in the 1975 film Mandingo and the 1976 film Drum. Norton played characters in nine motion pictures, and also appeared as himself in a number of documentaries and television films.
Norton additionally worked as a television and radio sports commentator and appeared in popular TV series, such as jailbird "Jackhammer" Jackson in "Pros and Cons", an early first-season episode of The A-Team (filmed 1982, broadcast 1983), and as boxer Bo Keeler in the fourth season Knight Rider episode "Redemption of a Champion" (1986). Norton also appeared on the Superstars sports competition on ABC TV (1976) and was a member of the Sports Illustrated Speakers Bureau. The character of "Apollo Creed" in Rocky was initially going to be played by Norton. However, when he pulled out, Carl Weathers was selected.
He appeared along with Ali, Foreman, Frazier and Holmes in a video, Champions Forever, discussing their best times, and in 2000 he published his autobiography, Going the Distance.
Ken Norton was twice voted "Father of the Year" by the Los Angeles Sentinel and the Los Angeles Times in 1977. To quote Norton from his biography, Believe: Journey From Jacksonville: "Of all the titles that I've been privileged to have, the title of 'dad' has always been the best."
His son, Ken Norton Jr, played football at UCLA and had a long successful career in the NFL. In tribute to his father's boxing career, Ken Jr. would strike a boxing stance in the end zone each time he scored a defensive touchdown and throw a punching combination at the goalpost pad. Ken Jr was a member of three Super Bowl champion teams as a player and one as an assistant coach. He was the linebackers' coach for the Seattle Seahawks.
Norton died at a care facility in Las Vegas on September 18, 2013. He was 70 years old and had suffered a series of strokes in later life. Across the boxing world tributes were paid, with George Foreman calling him "the fairest of them all" and Larry Holmes saying that he "will be incredibly missed in the boxing world and by many".
Professional boxing record
|42 Wins (33 knockouts), 7 Losses, 1 Draw |
|Loss||42–7–1||Gerry Cooney||TKO||1 (10)||May 11, 1981||Madison Square Garden, New York, United States|
|Win||42–6–1||Randall Cobb||SD||10||Nov 7, 1980||HemisFair Arena, San Antonio, Texas, United States||Prior the Norton-Cobb matchup, Cobb beat Earnie Shavers by TKO in 8th on August 2, 1980. Incidentally, Ken Norton was the Color Analyst for the TV broadcast of the Cobb-Shavers fight.|
|Draw||41–6–1||Scott LeDoux||PTS||10||August 19, 1979||Metropolitan Sports Center, Bloomington, Minnesota, United States||Norton was knocked down twice in round 10.|
|Loss||41–6||Earnie Shavers||KO||1 (12)||March 23, 1979||Hilton Hotel, Las Vegas, United States|
|Win||41–5||Randy Stephens||KO||3 (10)||Nov 10, 1978||Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, United States||Norton hit Stephens with a good shot in the 3rd round that staggered him.|
|Loss||40–5||Larry Holmes||SD||15||June 9, 1978||Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, United States||Lost WBC Heavyweight title. Norton was late in his prime for his first title defense vs. Holmes, who was early in his peak.|
|Win||40–4||Jimmy Young||SD||15||Nov 5, 1977||Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, United States||Eliminator for WBC Heavyweight title. Shortly after this fight, Norton was awarded the WBC title as Leon Spinks signed to fight Muhammad Ali in a rematch instead of WBC #1 ranked Norton.|
|Win||39–4||Lorenzo Zanon||KO||5 (10)||September 14, 1977||Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, United States|
|Win||38–4||Duane Bobick||TKO||1 (12)||May 11, 1977||Madison Square Garden, New York, United States|
|Loss||37–4||Muhammad Ali||UD||15||September 28, 1976||Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York, United States||For WBC & WBA Heavyweight titles.|
|Win||37–3||Larry Middleton||TKO||10 (10)||July 10, 1976||Sports Arena, San Diego, United States||This fight was billed as "The Battle of the Jaw Breakers" as Middleton had broken Joe Bugner's jaw and Norton had broken Muhammad Ali's jaw.|
|Win||36–3||Ron Stander||TKO||5 (12)||April 30, 1976||Capital Centre, Landover, Maryland, United States|
|Win||35–3||Pedro Lovell||TKO||5 (10)||January 10, 1976||Convention Center, Las Vegas, United States|
|Win||34–3||Jose Luis Garcia||KO||5 (10)||August 14, 1975||Civic Center, Saint Paul, Minnesota, United States||Garcia was knocked down once in the 3rd, 4th, and 5th rounds.|
|Win||33–3||Jerry Quarry||TKO||5 (12)||March 24, 1975||Madison Square Garden, New York, United States||Won vacant NABF Heavyweight title. Title had been vacated by Muhammad Ali.|
|Win||32–3||Rico Brooks||KO||1 (10)||Mar 4, 1975||Red Carpet Inn, Oklahoma City, United States|
|Win||31–3||Boone Kirkman||RTD||7 (10)||June 25, 1974||Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle, United States||Kirkman was knocked down in the 7th, and did not answer the bell for the 8th round.|
|Loss||30–3||George Foreman||TKO||2 (15)||March 26, 1974||El Poliedro, Caracas, Venezuela||For WBC & WBA Heavyweight titles. Norton down three times. This fight would became known as the "Caracas Caper".|
|Loss||30–2||Muhammad Ali||SD||12||Sep 10, 1973||Forum, Inglewood, California, United States||Lost NABF Heavyweight title.|
|Win||30–1||Muhammad Ali||SD||12||March 31, 1973||Sports Arena, San Diego, United States||Won NABF Heavyweight title. Ali suffered a broken jaw during this bout. There were no knockdowns.|
|Win||29–1||Charlie Reno||UD||10||December 13, 1972||San Diego, United States|
|Win||28–1||Henry Clark||KO||9 (10)||November 21, 1972||Sahara Tahoe Hotel, Stateline, Nevada, United States|
|Win||27–1||James J. Woody||TKO||8 (10)||June 30, 1972||San Diego, United States|
|Win||26–1||Herschel Jacobs||UD||10||June 5, 1972||San Diego, United States|
|Win||25–1||Jack O'Halloran||UD||10||March 17, 1972||Coliseum, San Diego, United States|
|Win||24–1||Charlie Harris||KO||3 (?)||February 17, 1972||San Diego, United States|
|Win||23–1||James J. Woody||UD||10||September 29, 1971||Coliseum, San Diego, United States|
|Win||22–1||Chuck Haynes||KO||7 (10)||August 7, 1971||Civic Auditorium, Santa Monica, California, United States|
|Win||21–1||Vic Brown||KO||5 (10)||June 12, 1971||Civic Auditorium, Santa Monica, California, United States|
|Win||20–1||Steve Carter||TKO||3 (10)||June 12, 1971||Valley Music Theatre, Woodland Hills, California, United States|
|Win||19–1||Roby Harris||KO||2 (?)||October 16, 1970||Coliseum, San Diego, United States|
|Win||18–1||Chuck Leslie||UD||10||September 26, 1970||Valley Music Theatre, Woodland Hills, California, United States|
|Win||17–1||Roy Wallace||KO||4 (?)||August 29, 1970||Coliseum, San Diego, United States|
|Loss||16–1||Jose Luis Garcia||KO||8 (10)||July 2, 1970||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, United States||Norton knocked down in 1st and 8th rounds.|
|Win||16–0||Ray Junior Ellis||KO||2 (?)||May 8, 1970||San Diego, United States|
|Win||15–0||Bob Mashburn||KO||4 (10)||Apr 7, 1970||Arena, Cleveland, Ohio, United States|
|Win||14–0||Stamford Harris||TKO||3 (10)||March 13, 1970||Coliseum, Arena, San Diego, United States|
|Win||13–0||Aaron Eastling||KO||2 (10)||February 4, 1970||Coliseum, Silver Slipper, Las Vegas, United States|
|Win||12–0||Julius Garcia||KO||3 (10)||October 21, 1969||San Diego, United States|
|Win||11–0||Gary Bates||KO||8 (10)||July 25, 1969||San Diego, United States|
|Win||10–0||Bill McMurray||TKO||7 (10)||July 25, 1969||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, United States||A cut over McMurray's left eye, ended the bout.|
|Win||9–0||Pedro Sanchez||TKO||2 (10)||March 31, 1969||Sports Arena, San Diego, United States|
|Win||8–0||Wayne Kindred||TKO||9 (10)||February 20, 1969||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, United States|
|Win||7–0||Joe Hemphill||TKO||3 (10)||February 11, 1969||Valley Music Theatre, Woodland Hills, California, United States|
|Win||6–0||Cornell Nolan||KO||6 (10)||December 8, 1968||Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, United States|
|Win||5–0||Wayne Kindred||TKO||6 (10)||July 23, 1968||Circle Arts Theater, San Diego, United States|
|Win||4–0||Jimmy Gilmore||KO||7 (8)||March 26, 1968||Community Concourse, San Diego, United States|
|Win||3–0||Harold Dutra||KO||3 (6)||February 6, 1968||Memorial Auditorium, Sacramento, California, United States||Norton knocked down in the 2nd round.|
|Win||2–0||Sam Wyatt||PTS||6||January 16, 1968||Community Concourse, San Diego, United States|
|Win||1–0||Grady Brazell||KO||5 (6)||November 14, 1967||Community Concourse, San Diego, United States|
- KO – knock-out
- PTS – decision on points
- RTD –
- SD – split decision
- TKO – technical knock-out
- UD – unanimous decision
- de Beauchamp, Joseph (November 30, 2004) Rocky The Movie: The Kenny Norton Story or the Real Apollo Creed? saddoboxing.com
- Ebony. Johnson Publishing Company. June 1973. pp. 152–. ISSN 0012-9011.
- Ken Norton. MCCS Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame
- Newman, Eric (April 25, 2013) Best Late Bloomers in Sports, 4. Ken Norton. Bleacher Report
- Hypnotist Aided Norton – Confidence Key To Upset Of Ali, AP, April 2, 1973
- Positive attitude key to Norton's boxing, AP, March 27, 1975
- Think and Grow Rich. Life Training (Discusses that Ken Norton attributed his win over Muhammad Ali to the principles he learned in Think and Grow Rich.)
- Norton, p. 46
-  Ken Norton about Napoleon Hill's "Think and Grow Rich"
- Murray, Jim (August 7, 1973) Ken the conqueror. The Free Lance-Star
- Johnson, R.T. (March 16, 2012) Ken Norton: The Man Who Shut Up Ali. The History Rat
- Norton, p. 60
- The Southeast Missourian. March 12, 1976
- The Ring Magazine, September 1976, p. 43
- Maffei, John (July 6, 2013). "Sports site No. 3: San Diego Sports Arena". U-T San Diego. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
- Today in Sports History: Elvis and Ali. Mettachronicles.com (January 2, 2013). Retrieved on June 21, 2014.
- Pacquiao-Marquez III: Celebrating the trilogies (Muhammad Ali–Ken Norton). Espn.go.com (November 7, 2011). Retrieved on June 21, 2014.
- Video on YouTube
- Spinks Snub Miffs Norton, AP via Ludington Daily News, March 11, 1978
- Anderson, Dave (March 9, 1978) No. 1 Contender – Norton only boxer behaving like a champion, N.Y. Times via Star-News
- "Norton-Young Bout May Be for the Title", Milwaukee Journal, November 5, 1977
- "The judges' cards for Holmes vs. Norton". boxrec.com. June 9, 1978. Retrieved March 17, 2011.
- Holmes get boxing title. Associated Press via The Tuscaloosa News, June 10, 1978
- A Lesson in Manliness From the Ex-Marine: Ken Norton, The Art of Manliness, November 12, 2012
- Norton's biography Going the distance
- Julian Compton. boxrec.com
- LeDoux, Norton draw, UPI via The Bryan Times, August 20, 1979
- Norton, p. 164
- Grimsley, Will (November 10, 1979) "Ken Norton: Now He's Fighting For Children", AP via The Evening Independent
- The 100 Greatest Punchers of All Time! boxrec.com
- Ken Norton. International Boxing Hall of Fame
- Norton Has Philosophy Of Success. AP via Lewiston Morning Tribune. July 28, 1973
- Norton, Ken; Hennessey, Donald, Jr. & Amodeo, John (2009). Believe: Journey From Jacksonville. Fairfield, IA: 1st World Publishing. ISBN 978-1-4218-9119-4.
- Ken Norton at the Wayback Machine (archived January 3, 2009). San Diego Hall of Champions
- KENNETH HOWARD NORTON – California Sports Hall of Fame 2011 Inductee at the Wayback Machine (archived August 31, 2013). California Sports Hall of Fame
- Roberts, Rich (December 26, 1987) "Ken Norton Is Now Fighting Back: Former Champ Is Learning to Talk Again After 1986 Car Accident", Los Angeles Times
- Rosenthal, Phil (October 4, 1986) Ken Norton Jr. helps father overcome crippling injuries, Daily News Los Angeles
- City, Big. (June 17, 2012) "Ken Norton: Two-Time Father of the Year", The Art of Manliness, June 17,2012. Retrieved on June 21, 2014.
- Keith Norton at the Wayback Machine (archived October 15, 2008). KPRC Houston Sports News. 2008
- Served with him in 29 Palms
- Obituary Kenneth Howard Norton Sr. Jacksonville Courier, September 24, 2012
- "Ken Norton, heavyweight boxing legend, dies at 70". BBC. September 19, 2013. Retrieved September 19, 2013.
- Dirs, Ben (September 19, 2013). "Ken Norton was a colossal figure in heavyweight boxing's greatest era". BBC. Retrieved September 19, 2013.
- Ken Norton – Boxer. Boxrec.com (September 18, 2013). Retrieved on June 21, 2014.
- Norton, Ken et al. (2000). Going the Distance. Champaign, IL: Sports Publishing. ISBN 1-58261-225-0.
- Find A Grave Memorial
- Professional boxing record for Ken Norton from BoxRec
- Ken Norton's Biography at BoxRec Boxing Encyclopedia
- Ken Norton Gallery from BoxRec Boxing Encyclopedia
- San Diego Hall of Champions' page about Ken Norton
- World Boxing Hall of Fame
- Ken Norton at the Internet Movie Database
- Ken Norton's page at Fanbase
- California Sports Hall of Fame's page about Ken Norton
- Editorial: Norton was a positive role model
- Ken Norton's biography at BlackPast.org
|NABF Heavyweight Champion
March 13, 1973 – September 10, 1973
|WBC Heavyweight Champion
March 18, 1978 – June 9, 1978
U.S. Olympic Boxing Gold Medalists –
Sugar Ray Leonard,
Leo Randolph, Howard Davis, Jr.,
Leon Spinks and Michael Spinks
|BWAA Fighter of the Year