Ali knocks out exhausted Foreman in 8th

Updated: October 17, 2005, 4:34 PM ET
By Larry Schwartz | Special to

Oct. 30, 1974

In the predawn hours under a pale African moon in Zaire, the Rumble in the Jungle takes place. The crowd of close to 60,000 chants, "Ali, bomaye," meaning "Ali, kill him."

For most of eight rounds, Muhammad Ali lets George Foreman try to kill him. Ali disdains his usual butterfly tactics and relies on a new strategy, the rope-a-dope. Ali lays on the ropes and lets the unbeaten heavyweight champ flail away at him, secure in his knowledge that he can either avoid or block the punches.

By the eighth round, Foreman, 25, is running on empty and the 32-year-old Ali takes advantage to knock out his exhausted opponent with a crisp left-right combination with two seconds left in the round. In handing the 4-1 favorite his first defeat in 41 fights, Ali becomes the second man to regain the heavyweight title (Floyd Patterson was the first).

"I told you he (Foreman) was nothing," Ali says to the media, "but did you listen?"