Norton, who defeated Ali in 1973 after breaking his jaw, had been undergoing rehabilitation since suffering a stroke last year, his friend and manager Patrick Tenore tells the LA Times. Norton’s son, Ken Norton Jr., a former NFL player who now coaches for the Seattle Seahawks, confirmed his father’s passing with the AP.
After defeating Ali, the two heavyweights faced off at the Inglewood Forum in a rematch that same year. Norton lost. Ali defeated Norton once again in a decision match at Yankee Stadium in 1976.
Norton finished his boxing career with a record of 42-7-1 and 33 knockouts. He went on to an acting career.
Our thoughts remain with his family and friends.