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Multiple Years / Boxer Ron Lyle 1941-2011
Former heavyweight contender Ron Lyle died on November 26, 2011 as a result of complications from stomach surgery. He was 70. Lyle spent more than seven years in a Colorado prison for his part in a 1961 gang murder. He took up boxing while incarcerated. Lyle, paroled in 1969, did not have his first pro fight until 1971 when he was 30. He compiled an excellent 43-7-1 professional record, but his two most famous fights were losses. Lyle was stopped by Muhammad Ali in a May 16, 1975 world title fight in Las Vegas. Lyle was leading on the judges' scorecards when the fight was stopped, somewhat controversially by the standards of the day, in the 11th round. On January 24, 1976, Lyle engaged in a memorable crossroads fight versus George Foreman, also in Las Vegas. It was a wild, nationally televised brawl that featured both men in trouble several times. Each man was knocked down twice. Foreman eventually prevailed by a fifth-round knockout. Boxing historian Bert Sugar claimed it was "the most two-sided fight" he had hever seen.