wrestling / News

Bruce Prichard Recalls Muhammad Ali’s Match With Gorilla Monsoon, Ali Being a Wrestling Fan

February 10, 2019 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas

– Bruce Prichard discussed boxing legend Muhammad Ali’s pro wrestling experiences on his latest Something to Wrestle podcast. Highlights are below, per Wrestling Inc:

On Ali being a fan of pro wrestling: “Ali grew up as a wrestling fan. He got his wrap from Gorgeous George back in the ’50s. He loved Bruno and those guys from that era. Monsoon to him was like a larger than life character. A boxer, even Mike Tyson, they were afraid of the wrestler because they knew if the wrestler ever got you down you were dead. As good as you are with your hands if that wrestler gets you down and ties you up in a knot there’s not much you can do, especially with boxing gloves on.”

On Ali’s experience with Gorilla Monsoon : “What they had to do [to promote Ali vs. Antonio Inoki] was they had to bring Ali into these different territories and do something with their local guy. In Minneapolis, they did it with Buddy Wolfe, in New York, they did it with Gorilla Monsoon. Monsoon’s whole thing is that you’re (Ali) not going to embarrass me. Just to let Ali know that he can take him anytime he wanted to, Monsoon went and got him and did the airplane spin. Bundini Brown’s on the outside of the ring, Ali’s manager, they didn’t know, so they’re all upset. Not everybody was smartened up. Monsoon does this airplane spin, drops Ali and Ali’s dizzy, and it was picked up by everybody. I remember seeing it in Houston as a kid.”

On the Ali vs. Antonio Inoki match: “It became a shoot to a point, but it was always designed to be a work.”