Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Ken Norton, Boxing Champion

Ken Norton, a Championship Fighter Who Broke Ali’s Jaw, Is Dead at 70

Associated Press
Ken Norton connects with a left to the head of Muhammad Ali during a bout in Inglewood, Calif., in 1973.

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Ken Norton, who had three memorable fights with Muhammad Ali, breaking Ali’s jaw in winning their first bout, then losing twice, and who went on to become the World Boxing Council heavyweight champion, died Wednesday in the Las Vegas suburb of Henderson, Nev. He was 70.

Steve Marcus/Reuters
Ken Norton in Las Vegas in 2012 for the 70th birthday celebration for Muhammad Ali.
Associated Press
Muhammad Ali, right, knocking Ken Norton back in their third and final meeting, in Yankee Stadium in 1976. Ali won by a decision.
His death was confirmed by his son Ken Jr., an assistant coach with the Seattle Seahawks of the N.F.L. and a pro linebacker for 13 seasons, The Associated Press said. Norton had been in poor health for several years after sustaining a series of strokes, The A.P. reported.
Norton defeated Ali on a 12-round split decision in 1973 to capture the North American Boxing Federation heavyweight title. Norton was an exceptionally muscular 6 feet 2 inches and 220 pounds, but he was a decided underdog in the first Ali fight.
“Ali thought it would be an easy fight,” Norton’s former manager, Gene Kilroy, was quoted by The A.P. as saying. “But Norton was unorthodox. Instead of jabbing from above like most fighters, he would put his hand down and jab up at Ali.”
Kilroy said that after the fight, Norton visited Ali at the hospital where he was getting his broken jaw wired, and Ali told him he never wanted to fight him again.
But the second bout in their trilogy came six months later, when Ali rallied to win a narrow split decision. In their final bout, Ali retained his World Boxing Council and World Boxing Association titles when he defeated Norton on a decision that was unanimous but booed by many in the crowd of more than 30,000 at Yankee Stadium in September 1976.
“I was never the same fighter after that,” Norton told Red Smith of The New York Times in October 1979. “I never trained so hard again, never could put the same feeling into it. I was at my best that night, in the best shape I ever was.”
In 1977, Norton knocked out the previously unbeaten Duane Bobick in the first round and defeated Jimmy Young in a 15-round split decision in a W.B.C. title elimination series. He became the mandatory challenger for the winner of the coming fight between Ali and Leon Spinks. Spinks defeated Ali for the championship but shunned Norton for his first defense in favor of a rematch with Ali. The W.B.C. stripped Spinks of the title and awarded it to Norton.
Norton made his first defense of the W.B.C. title in 1978 against Larry Holmes and lost by a 15-round split decision in one of boxing’s most exciting fights.
Kenneth Howard Norton was born Aug. 9, 1943, in Jacksonville, Ill., and starred in high school football, basketball and track. He attended Northeast Missouri State University (now Truman State University) on a football scholarship but was hampered by a shoulder injury in his first two seasons and enlisted in the Marine Corps. Norton started boxing while he was in the Marines, compiling an amateur record of 24-2 and winning the All-Marine Heavyweight Championship three times.
He turned pro in 1967 and won 16 straight bouts before being knocked out by Jose Luis Garcia. Soon afterward, he read Napoleon Hill’s motivational book “Think and Grow Rich.”
“I must have read that book 100 times while in training, and I became a stronger person for it,” the Web site quoted him as saying. He said he believed in the book’s philosophy that a person could do the unexpected if he put his mind to it.
“So I train for my fights mentally as well as physically,” he said. “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.”
Norton fought the undefeated George Foreman for the W.B.C. and W.B.A. heavyweight championships in 1974 and was knocked out in the second round. He stopped Jerry Quarry in five rounds in 1975 to regain the N.A.B.F. crown. In his next fight, Norton avenged his 1970 loss to Garcia with a fifth-round knockout.
After retiring for a time, Norton returned in 1980 and defeated the previously unbeaten Tex Cobb on a decision. The next year, Gerry Cooney, ranked No. 1 by the W.B.A. and the W.B.C., knocked Norton out in the first round in what became his final fight. Norton won 42 fights (33 by knockout), lost seven times and fought one draw.
Norton acted in several movies, most notably “Mandingo” (1975), in which he played the slave Mede, who is trained to fight by his owner.
Ken Norton Jr. played linebacker for the Dallas Cowboys from 1988 to 1993 and for the San Francisco 49ers from 1994 to 2000. He was a three-time Pro Bowl player with the 49ers.
In addition to Ken Jr., Norton’s survivors include his wife, Rose Conant; two other sons, Keith and Kenny John; and a daughter, Kenisha.       
Kenneth Howard Norton Sr. (August 9, 1943 – September 18, 2013) was an American heavyweight boxer and WBC world Heavyweight Champion.[3] He was best known for his 12-round victory over Muhammad Ali, when he famously broke Ali's jaw, on March 31, 1973, becoming only the second man to defeat a peak Ali as a professional (after Joe Frazier, who won a 15-round unanimous decision against Ali on March 8, 1971).
He and Ali would fight twice more, with Ali officially winning narrowly both return bouts, although many felt Norton truly deserved their third fight. Norton was awarded the WBC title (by virtue of his win over Jimmy Young in a 1977 title elimination bout) when Leon Spinks declined a mandated title defense against Norton, the number one contender. However, Norton lost it in his first defense on a split decision by 1 point to Larry Holmes in a great contest (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).

Early years[edit source | edit]

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.[4]

Boxing career[edit source | edit]

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.[5][6] 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 Ring magazine had profiled him as a prospect, at the hands of Jose Luis Garcia in 1970. It was Garcia's career peak.
Norton was given the motivational book Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill,[7][8] which, as he states in his autobiography, Going the Distance, changed his life (Norton, et al., 2000, p. 46). Upon reading it, he went on a 14-fight winning streak, including a shocking victory over Muhammad Ali in 1973 to win the North American Boxing Federation heavyweight champion title.[9][10] 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."[11]
An article which appeared in The Southeast Missourian[12] 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!"[13]

Versus Ali, first & second fight[edit source | edit]

'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[14] 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.[15] Norton won a 12-round split decision over Ali in his adopted hometown of San Diego to win the NABF heavyweight title.[10] 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.[16] 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[edit source | edit]

In 1974, Norton fought George Foreman for the World Heavyweight Championship but was stopped in two rounds.
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[edit source | edit]

On September 28, 1976, at Yankee Stadium in New York City, Norton would again fight Ali,[16] 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.[17]
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[edit source | edit]

1977 was a top year for Norton. He knocked out previously unbeaten top prospect Duane Bobick in one round, and after despatching European title holder Lorenzo Zannon easily, he beat 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; however, observers thought the decision controversial.
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[18] rather than face the still dangerous Norton.[19] 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.[20][21]

Larry Holmes title fight[edit source | edit]

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.[22] The Associated Press scored it 143-142 for Norton.[23] 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.

Retirement looms[edit source | edit]

After losing to Holmes, Norton won his next fight by knockout over sixth-ranked Randy Stephens in 1978[24] before taking on Earnie Shavers in another compulsory.[25] 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 (Norton's peak was 1973-1978.)[26] Then, in his next fight, he fought to a draw with future 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).[27]
After the fight, Norton decided that at 37 it was time to retire from boxing.[28] 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.[29] 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.[30] Norton was considered past his prime in boxing from 1979 to 1981.[26]

Awards and recognitions[edit source | edit]

Ken Norton is a 1989 inductee of the World Boxing Hall of Fame,[31] a 1992 inductee of the International Boxing Hall Of Fame,[32] a 2004 inductee into the United States Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame,[5] 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 [33] (e.g. Think and Grow Rich [9][34] as noted above and Success Through A Positive Mental Attitude [19] by Hill and W. Clement Stone) also received the "Napoleon Hill Award" for positive thinking in 1973 (Norton, et al., 2000, p. 46).
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.[3] Norton was also inducted into the California Sports Hall of Fame in 2011. [35]

Unconventional style[edit source | edit]

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 defence 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[edit source | edit]

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 9 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.
Norton continued making TV, radio and public speaking appearances until suffering injuries in a near-fatal car accident in 1986. It left him with slow and slurred speech.[36][37][38]
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 (ISBN 1-58261-225-0).

Family[edit source | edit]

Ken Norton was twice voted "Father of the Year" by the Los Angeles Sentinel and the Los Angeles Times in 1977.[34][39] 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." [40]
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. He is now the linebackers' coach for the Seattle Seahawks.
Ken Norton's other son, Keith Norton, was once the weekend sports anchor for KPRC in Houston, Texas.[41]

Death[edit source | edit]

Norton died on September 18, 2013, at a care facility in Las Vegas. He was 70 years old and had suffered a series of strokes in later life.[42] Across the boxing world tributes were paid, with George Foreman calling him "the fairest of them all", and Larry Holmes saying that "[Norton] will be incredibly missed in the boxing world and by many."[43]

Professional boxing record[edit source | edit]

42 Wins (33 knockouts), 7 Losses, 1 Draw [4]
Loss42-7-1United States Gerry CooneyTKO1 (10)11/05/1981United States Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States
Win42-6-1United States Randall CobbSD1007/11/1980United States HemisFair Arena, San Antonio, Texas, United StatesPrior the Norton-Cobb matchup, Cobb beat Earnie Shavers by TKO in 8ht on August 2, 1980. Incidentally, Ken Norton was the Color Analyst for the TV broadcast of the Cobb-Shavers fight.
Draw41-6-1United States Scott LeDouxPTS1019/08/1979United States Metropolitan Sports Center, Bloomington, Minnesota, United StatesNorton was knocked down twice in round 10.
Loss41–6United States Earnie ShaversKO1 (12)23/03/1979United States Hilton Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win41–5United States Randy StephensKO3 (10)10/11/1978United States Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada, United StatesNorton hit Stephens with a good shot in the 3rd round that staggered him.
Loss40–5United States Larry HolmesSD1509/06/1978United States Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada, United StatesLost WBC Heavyweight title. Norton was late in his prime for his first title defense vs. Holmes, who was early in his peak.
Win40–4United States Jimmy YoungSD1505/11/1977United States Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada, United StatesEliminator 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.
Win39–4Italy Lorenzo ZanonKO5 (10)14/09/1977United States Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win38–4United States Duane BobickTKO1 (12)11/05/1977United States Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States
Loss37–4United States Muhammad AliUD1528/09/1976United States Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York, United StatesFor WBC & WBA Heavyweight titles.
Win37–3United States Larry MiddletonTKO10 (10)10/07/1976United States Sports Arena, San Diego, California, United StatesThis fight was billed as "The Battle of the Jaw Breakers" as Middleton had broken Joe Bugner's jaw and Norton had broken Muhammed Ali's jaw.
Win36–3United States Ron StanderTKO5 (12)30/04/1976United States Capital Centre, Landover, Maryland, United States
Win35–3Argentina Pedro LovellTKO5 (10)10/01/1976United States Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win34–3Venezuela Jose Luis GarciaKO5 (10)14/08/1975United States Civic Center, Saint Paul, Minnesota, United StatesGarcia was knocked down once in the 3rd, 4th, and 5th rounds.
Win33–3United States Jerry QuarryTKO5 (12)24/03/1975United States Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United StatesWon vacant NABF Heavyweight title. Title had been vacated by Muhammad Ali.
Win32–3United States Rico BrooksKO1 (10)04/03/1975United States Red Carpet Inn, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States
Win31–3United States Boone KirkmanRTD7 (10)25/06/1974United States Seattle Center Coliseum, Seattle, Washington, Washington, United StatesKirkman was knocked down in the 7th, and did not answer the bell for the 8th round.
Loss30–3United States George ForemanTKO2 (15)26/03/1974Venezuela El Poliedro, Caracas, VenezuelaFor WBC & WBA Heavyweight titles. Norton down 3 times. This fight would became known as the "Caracas Caper".
Loss30–2United States Muhammad AliSD1210/09/1973United States Forum, Inglewood, California, United StatesLost NABF Heavyweight title.
Win30–1United States Muhammad AliSD1231/03/1973United States Sports Arena, San Diego, California, United StatesWon NABF Heavyweight title. Ali suffered a broken jaw during this bout. There were no knockdowns.
Win29–1United States Charlie RenoUD1013/12/1972United States San Diego, California, United States
Win28–1United States Henry ClarkKO9 (10)21/11/1972United States Sahara Tahoe Hotel, Stateline, Nevada, United States
Win27–1United States James J. WoodyTKO8 (10)30/06/1972United States San Diego, California, United States
Win26–1United States Herschel JacobsUD1005/06/1972United States San Diego, California, United States
Win25–1United States Jack O'HalloranUD1017/03/1972United States Coliseum, San Diego, California, United States
Win24–1United States Charlie HarrisKO3 (?)17/02/1972United States San Diego, California, United States
Win23–1United States James J. WoodyUD1029/09/1971United States Coliseum, San Diego, California, United States
Win22–1United States Chuck HaynesKO7 (10)07/08/1971United States Civic Auditorium, Santa Monica, California, United States
Win21–1United States Vic BrownKO5 (10)12/06/1971United States Civic Auditorium, Santa Monica, California, United States
Win20–1United States Steve CarterTKO3 (10)12/06/1971United States Valley Music Theatre, Woodland Hills, California, United States
Win19–1United States Roby HarrisKO2 (?)16/10/1970United States Coliseum, San Diego, California, United States
Win18–1United States Chuck LeslieUD1026/09/1970United States Valley Music Theatre, Woodland Hills, California, United States
Win17–1United States Roy WallaceKO4 (?)29/08/1970United States Coliseum, San Diego, California, United States
Loss16–1Venezuela Jose Luis GarciaKO8 (10)02/07/1970United States Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United StatesNorton knocked down in 1st and 8th rounds.
Win16–0United States Ray Junior EllisKO2 (?)08/05/1970United States San Diego, California, United States
Win15–0United States Bob MashburnKO4 (10)07/04/1970United States Arena, Cleveland, Ohio, United States
Win14–0United States Stamford HarrisTKO3 (10)13/03/1970United States Coliseum, Arena, San Diego, California, United States
Win13–0United States Aaron EastlingKO2 (10)04/02/1970United States Coliseum, Silver Slipper, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
Win12–0United States Julius GarciaKO3 (10)21/10/1969United States San Diego, California, United States
Win11–0United States Gary BatesKO8 (10)25/07/1969United States San Diego, California, United States
Win10–0United States Bill McMurrayTKO7 (10)25/07/1969United States Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United StatesA cut over McMurray's left eye, ended the bout.
Win9–0Puerto Rico Pedro SanchezTKO2 (10)31/03/1969United States Sports Arena, San Diego, California, United States
Win8–0United States Wayne KindredTKO9 (10)20/02/1969United States Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States
Win7–0United States Joe HemphillTKO3 (10)11/02/1969United States Valley Music Theatre, Woodland Hills, California, United States
Win6–0United States Cornell NolanKO6 (10)08/12/1968United States Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States
Win5–0United States Wayne KindredTKO6 (10)23/07/1968United States Circle Arts Theater, San Diego, California, United States
Win4–0United States Jimmy GilmoreKO7 (8)26/03/1968United States Community Concourse, San Diego, California, United States
Win3–0United States Harold DutraKO3 (6)06/02/1968United States Memorial Auditorium, Sacramento, California, United StatesNorton knocked down in the 2nd round.
Win2–0United States Sam WyattPTS616/01/1968United States Community Concourse, San Diego, California, United States
Win1–0United States Grady BrazellKO5 (6)14/11/1967United States Community Concourse, San Diego, California, United States
  • KO - knock-out
  • PTS - decision on points
  • RTD -
  • SD - split decision
  • TKO - technical knock-out
  • UD - unanimous decision



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