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#143739 - 05/14/05 06:19 AM Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter?
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
Recently Ive been watching a lot of classic boxing matches and have been paying a lot of attention to Ali in particular. Its easy to see why Bruce liked him so much. There footwork is almost identical. Bruce worked the jab alot, something Ali was famous for. Also, when watching Ali fight, you observe him gauging and tempting his opponent. He almost always waited for the opponent to strike before he began his attack often intercepting them or countering just a second later. He could also draw them too close with his footwork, leaving an excellent attack opportunity as the opponent moved forwards. If only he knew how to kick...
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#143740 - 05/15/05 06:34 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Chen Zen]
Ayub Offline
heartbreaker, lifetaker

Registered: 11/26/04
Posts: 825
Loc: London, UK
Ali actually had a black belt in TKD so he could kick!!!! I cant find proof of the blackbelt on the net, just saw it on a dvd about Ali. He was taught by TKD master Jhoon Rhee (search him and Ali to see proof of Alis links to TKD), who also crossed paths with Bruce Lee. He chose not to continue the TKD or kicking training to my knowledge. Perhaps he was a JKD practitioner and his interpretation was very different from most other peoples..... We can't say he wasnt an effective fighter.

Ayub

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#143741 - 05/15/05 07:54 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Ayub]
DragonFire1134 Offline
Former Moderator

Registered: 08/25/03
Posts: 1479
Loc: Theodore (mobile), Alabama
He didn't need to kick.

His legs did EXACTLY what they were designed for him to do! The man was awesome! Its ashame the way his health has gone.

I never knew he trained in TKD or even crossed paths with Bruce...although I know Bruce admitted he would more than likely get creamed by Ali if they were to go at it!
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#143742 - 05/15/05 08:21 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: DragonFire1134]
someotherguy Offline
Member

Registered: 04/20/05
Posts: 69
i thought ali has said the same?

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#143743 - 05/15/05 12:43 PM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: someotherguy]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
Interesting. I never knew about him and Jhoon Rhee. He was exceptional TKD artist, one that bruce respected highly. I'll have to look into that more. Its hard to say who would have won between the two. Given more options to work with Id have to give the edge to Bruce although Ali had powerful fists and used them well. What a match that could have been.
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#143744 - 05/17/05 02:51 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Chen Zen]
Cord Offline
Prolific

Registered: 01/13/05
Posts: 11399
Loc: Cambridge UK.
Ali was, at one point matched against Jim Kelly for an exhibition fight, but for various reasons it never happened. That would have been an interesting match.
Bruce said that for punching and timing he was a huge admirer of western boxing, as arguably the greatest exponent of queensbury rules, it is not so strange that Ali should display many of the aspects of the art that Bruce distilled into his style. Maybe the question should be, Bruce Lee...A flyweight boxer? Would have been great to see him fight within that environment, his speed and timing would have made him pretty good IMO
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#143745 - 05/18/05 12:13 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Cord]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
He would have been good, but in my eyes one of the most striking aspects about Bruces abilities was his kicking speed and power. Not to take away from his boxing abilities at all, but he seemed to be able to crush a man to dust with a kick.
_________________________
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
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#143746 - 05/18/05 06:21 PM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Chen Zen]
JohnL Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 03/24/03
Posts: 4309
Loc: NY, NY, USA
Quote:

Interesting. I never knew about him and Jhoon Rhee. He was exceptional TKD artist, one that bruce respected highly. I'll have to look into that more. Its hard to say who would have won between the two. Given more options to work with Id have to give the edge to Bruce although Ali had powerful fists and used them well. What a match that could have been.




Wouldn't even have been close. Comparing BL with Ali is almost an insult to Ali. The man competed over decades in the heavyweight boxing division when there were good boxers around. He met all comers and beat them.

And you're comparing a 5' nothing guy who appeared in films and whose skills were not pressure tested against top fighters.

As I said. There's no comparison.
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#143747 - 05/18/05 11:37 PM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: JohnL]
DragonFire1134 Offline
Former Moderator

Registered: 08/25/03
Posts: 1479
Loc: Theodore (mobile), Alabama
Well...

In a boxing match, I'd bet on Ali.
In a MMA match, I'd bet on Bruce.

Its pretty ignorant to dismiss Lee so quickly, I'm sorry.

It would have been an awesome match either way... wouldn't been easy on either one of them! I'm sure Ali wouldn't be "insulted" to have been compared to Mr. Lee.
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#143748 - 05/19/05 03:05 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: JohnL]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
Quote:

Quote:

Interesting. I never knew about him and Jhoon Rhee. He was exceptional TKD artist, one that bruce respected highly. I'll have to look into that more. Its hard to say who would have won between the two. Given more options to work with Id have to give the edge to Bruce although Ali had powerful fists and used them well. What a match that could have been.




Wouldn't even have been close. Comparing BL with Ali is almost an insult to Ali. The man competed over decades in the heavyweight boxing division when there were good boxers around. He met all comers and beat them.

And you're comparing a 5' nothing guy who appeared in films and whose skills were not pressure tested against top fighters.

As I said. There's no comparison.




A insult to Ali, I think not. If anything it should be considered a compliment. Im sure he would have been honored to have a match with Bruce, or vice versa. Dont dismiss Bruces ability to generate power just because of his size. He did many studies with UCLA to prove the scientific effectiveness of his technique in regards to power and speed.

Also never pressure tested against skilled fighters? What about Jhoon Rhee, or Chuck Norris or Joe Lewis? Dan Inosant was a skilled MA before training with Bruce as well. What about his teacher, Yip Man? Or the famous Wong Jack Man confrontation? Surely any one of those men could be considered men of skill.
_________________________
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
Lao Tzu

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#143749 - 06/12/05 06:54 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Chen Zen]
trevek Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/15/05
Posts: 3337
Loc: Poland
I didn't know about TKD but Ali was great friends with George Dillman, who actually bought Ali's old training camp. I thought he gave him a Black Belt. Mind you, Dillman once said Ali didn't learn karate system while he was competing in case he threw a kick in the ring.
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#143750 - 06/23/05 02:39 PM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Chen Zen]
etaks86 Offline
Member

Registered: 04/14/05
Posts: 161
chen, man your right i was watching a ali fight the other night and he reminded me alot of bruce. as for being a jkd fighter i would say yes he was. i don't think he had any training from bruce or anything like that but i would consider him a jkd fighter. yeah man he moved like poetry in motion. peace

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#143751 - 06/25/05 11:14 PM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: etaks86]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
I just got a new set of Ali fights on DVD. Cant wait to watch em.
_________________________
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
Lao Tzu

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#143752 - 06/25/05 11:51 PM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Chen Zen]
laf7773 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/05/04
Posts: 4064
Loc: Limbo
The only issue i have with Bruce Lee isn't actually with him; it's with many of his fans. He was a good martial artist and teacher, he also had a lot of good theories but unfortunately many don't know that many of his theories and quotes weren't exclusively his own. Bruce learned and taught to many people and many of the theories he had were a culmination of him and the vast majority of people he trained with but not exclusively his as many would believe. Too many people put him on a pedestal based on his movies and the "stories" they have heard. Bruce was good but FAR from being the unstoppable force so many paint him to be. For those who have seen live footage of him sparring know what i mean. I'm not talking about his demonstration footage either. He was far from dominating anyone with experience in his day or today. Unfortunately the myth and legend out weigh the facts these days. When you hear people who knew him talk about him today you don't hear them talk about how impossible he was to beat, they talk about how he was ahead of his time in his training and the great lengths he went through in his physical training. He had a very good understanding of the mechanics of fighting and power generation, that is obvious in his writings and it shows. His one inch punch that is so famous is nothing new though, its mechanics are evident in many Chinese systems. Unfortunately nothing can be proven today about Bruce due to the fact that there was little footage showing his skill other than demo footage, and we all know how demos can go.

With that being said there is also nothing to say Bruce wasn't what everyone makes him out to be. He could very well have been the best ever. My point is there is no actual proof that can ever lay things to rest. One thing Bruce was and still is today is an excellent example of how the martial arts should be practiced, regardless of what style you study. There are so many studying good valid systems but only practice while in the dojo and never look at any practical application of their art. Even some so called masters are a pathetic sign of what the martial arts have become (in general).

Personally i think Ali would have taken him. While Bruce was capable of generating a lot of power for his size so was Ali. Ali was also more apt to be able to absorb the force given. Ali was an outstanding tactician and i don't think anyone can argue with his speed. Given that i think after a short feeling out session Ali would have taken Bruce out.
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Enjoy life while you can, you never know when things will change.

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#143753 - 06/26/05 12:06 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: laf7773]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
You make an interesting argument. One thing that cannot be ignored though was Bruces reliance on the kick. Surely against a boxer, he would begin the fight this way and attempt to keep it that way. He would have to keep the range and the best way to do that would be attack the legs. Bruce new it. Whether it was exclusively his own doesnt matter, he still knew it. The question then becomes, could he take out Ali's legs before Ali got the rush and dominated on the inside?
_________________________
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
Lao Tzu

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#143754 - 06/26/05 01:08 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Chen Zen]
laf7773 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/05/04
Posts: 4064
Loc: Limbo
I think Ali would have capitalized on his reliance on kicks. Ali was fast enough on his feet to stay out of range but still close the gap fast enough to do the damage needed. Of the footage i've seen Bruce in i have yet to see him against someone with Ali's speed and understanding of timing and distance. Ali knew how to read body language and had very good timing which made him very good at jamming people up. I think he would have been able to read Bruce's intentions and closed enough to make his kicks less effective and subsequently putting himself at a huge advantage. There is no way Bruce could have with stood Ali's power while recovering from a kick.

Then you also have to wonder if Bruce would have known that as well and tried to stick with more evasive tactics. There is always the fact that not only is Ali very fast, powerful, accurate and extremely skilled he's also 6'3" with an 84" reach. Bruce was only 5'7". Ali would have been able to stay just on the edge of Bruce’s kicks while still being able to reach him, kind of like big brother/little brother.
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Enjoy life while you can, you never know when things will change.

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#143755 - 06/26/05 10:24 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: laf7773]
MattJ Offline
Free Rhinoplasty!
Prolific

Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
*Quietly laughing at the irony of 2 moderators having a "who would win, Bruce Lee vs..." discussion*

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#143756 - 06/26/05 01:56 PM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: MattJ]
laf7773 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/05/04
Posts: 4064
Loc: Limbo
Yeah i thought about that myself. At least it wasn't 3 pages of "Bruce would kick his but because he's the baddest".. "no he's not".."yes he is"..."nuh uh, your stupid"..."@#$% you punk".
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#143757 - 06/27/05 01:09 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: laf7773]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
Yeah, it definately could have been worse. At least let it be an example of how this type of discussion should go.

Ok, back to the discussion, you must remember that Bruce had an invaluable sparring partner and student in Abdul Jabbar. He had some experience with a larger opponent with dominating reach. Now Karreem was no Ali, but the strategy would spill over some. Also what of his other students, who had martial arts training and a good understanding of timing and good speed such as Inosanto or Norris? He also sparred with Jhoon Rhee, who would have to have amazing timing to make traditional TKD effective, IMO. The only real disadvantage I see for Bruce is the body size and Ali's ability to dominate the inside. Not that we will ever know for sure but its a fun discussion anways.
_________________________
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
Lao Tzu

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#143758 - 06/27/05 01:18 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Chen Zen]
laf7773 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/05/04
Posts: 4064
Loc: Limbo
There is also the fact that Ali had a jaw of stone. Bruce would have to work much harder not only for a connection but enough of them to see results. Bruce's best bet in my opinion would be to go after his limbs and make it painful for Ali to maneuver or punch. Try to sap some of Ali's speed and agility from him. But if Ali got inside and got a rhythm on him i think Bruce would have been done for.
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Enjoy life while you can, you never know when things will change.

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#143759 - 06/27/05 01:23 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: laf7773]
Chen Zen Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/09/03
Posts: 7043
Loc: Ms
Agreed. I think Bruce's best bet would have been for lower leg attacks, trying to take away his footwork and then structural stability.
_________________________
"When I let Go of who I am, I become who I might be."
Lao Tzu

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#143760 - 07/20/05 09:35 PM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: laf7773]
Neonomide Offline
Member

Registered: 03/01/05
Posts: 37
Loc: Finland
Lee adviced Jabbar that his opponents would go for his feet. Lee countered a lead punch ith a sidekick to a knee in series called Longstreet. "It can be compared to left jab in boxing, yet is much more damaging"

Lee had utmost respect for boxers, especially Sugar Ray and Ali. Sugar Ray said that he did really dig Lee in Way of the Dragon. So they took stuff from each other. There is no proven connection between Lee and Ali, other than Lee incorporated some of the "the Ali shuffle" into his delivery system.

One of Lee's boxer students (the one with 90-0 wins in army or so) said, that "Lee would be killed in the ring by Ali, but it would be the other way on the street". I think this goes to "having no limitation as limitation", nut if Ali really had TKD-training, that would definitely had made the street match more interesting. But still, no rules + Bruce Lee was exactly what he was training for and could do it with frightening efficiency. No money for Ali from me in this case.

I bet that one eyejab from Bruce would have ended it, he penetrated full cans of Coke with one strike and could make it blindingly fast. In the boxing ring with boxing rules, it would had been a different story altogether. Lee was much smaller, with much less range with his weapons. Joe Lewis also stated that though Lee could well have been one of the top boxers with his boxing skills, he did not see Lee standing ten full boxing rounds during sparring. They didn't train like that. Lee also had tall neck, which is not a good attribute when one is taking a lot of hits to the head. So I think Lee would have been in trouble in the ring. Lee reportedly "trained" for a possible match between him and Ali during the shoot of Enter The Dragon.
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#143761 - 08/24/05 06:53 PM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Chen Zen]
gracerx Offline
Stranger

Registered: 08/24/05
Posts: 1
This is a great topic. I think that I read that Bruce dreamed of actually fighting Ali, but he admitted that if Ali ever connected he would get "killed". Referring to their comparative sizes. Bruce's later footwork was most certainly learned from watching Ali move. Watch Way of the Dragon and then watch Ali, their footwork is so similar, BL obviously got it from Ali and Bruce's power is undeniable, he could move that giant 500-600 pound bag that hangs at Guro Inosanto's school, with his one inch punch. I think their speed was comparable, Bruce could take a quarter out of your hand and give you change before you could close it, and Ali would just devastate with his speed. Supposedly BL could bridge a 10 foot gap before someone could move to stop him. That's fast.
In Bruce's defense, he had a variety of tools and experiences that Ali didn't, namely the different strategies and philosphy that make up JKD. Ali had the experience of competition and the ability to take tremendous punishment. They just trained for totally different arenas. Still would've been a great matchup.

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#143762 - 08/25/05 10:34 AM Re: Muhammad Ali...JKD fighter? [Re: Chen Zen]
BigRod Offline
Does it all

Registered: 02/10/05
Posts: 736
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Bruce Lee was a great martial artist. He was not a fighter. HUGE difference between the two.

Ali was a battled test veteran of the ring, who had the ring savvy, experience, power and conditioning to hand Bruce is a$$ on a silver platter. Not to mention the weight advantage. The rules of a competition between them would go a long way in dictating who would win.

Even if you had put them in a ring/octagon and let them go at it UFC 1 style, Ali would have devasted Lee, kicks or no kicks. Think Johnny Rhodes vs Fred Ettish. The only chance Bruce would have had is if had he grappling skills.

I think JohnL said Bruce was never pressure tested against skilled fighters. This true. He trained with some great martial artists and fighters, but training isn't fighting.

There's a saying, "The myth is often bigger than the man". This is case with Bruce Lee. Too many people get wrapped up in the myth, and ignore the realities of the man.

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