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James Naismith
Spy Chiefs, Volume 1
Submarine Commander
Sherman's Mississippi Campaign
The Memoirs of Harry S. Truman
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Gray Ghost
Envy Up, Scorn Down
The Conquest of Texas
Peace and Freedom

Muhammad Ali and the Greatest Heavyweight GenerationMuhammad Ali and the Greatest Heavyweight Generation

Tom Cushman

Narrated by Todd Belcher

Available from Audible

Book published by Southeast Missouri State University Press

Tom Cushman, one of boxing’s great sportswriters, followed the “Ali generation” of fighters from New York to Las Vegas, Nassau to Zaire, reporting for the Philadelphia Daily News from 19661982 and for the San Diego Tribune, 19821992. Muhammad Ali and the Greatest Heavyweight Generation chronicles the behind-the-scenes stories of the great athletes in boxing’s biggest-and-best age—their victories and struggles, crimes and passions, heydays and swansongs.

This collection of essays, gleaned from Cushman’s personal files as well as his recent research, brings to light the backgrounds of the fighters, in and out of the ring: Liston’s tragic death, Foreman’s rise from hell to heaven, Holmes’s crushing defeat and his great heart, Everett’s murder—and everywhere, always, the unforgettable voice and charismatic volume of the astounding Muhammad Ali.

Tom Cushman worked as a reporter for the Colorado Springs Gazette Telegraph (19591966), as reporter and eventually staff columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News (19661982), as Sports Editor and columnist for the San Diego Tribune (19821992), and as Sports Editor and columnist for the San Diego Union-Tribune (19922002).


“Written by an outstanding sportswriter/columnist, this book chronicles the richest age in the 120-year history of gloved prizefighting’s heavyweight division. Baby-boomer fight fans are spoiled, conditioned as they are to believe that the division should ALWAYS be populated by the likes of Ali, Frazier, Foreman, Norton, Quarry, Bonavena, Terrell, Shavers, and the like. The truth is it has happened once and only once. Tom Cushman’s stirring remembrance of that time and those personalities is a great read for those who saw it and those who can only wish they had.”

—Jim Lampley, HBO Boxing Commentator

“Tom Cushman, the sportswriter who knew every square of the old square jungle. During the time I was in boxing and he was writing, he tried to help make boxing better.”

—George Foreman, Two-time World Heavyweight Boxing Champion

“Tom Cushman looked at boxing with a clear eye and listened to boxers and boxing people with a keen ear. Here, he delivers a one-two punch of the sights and sounds of boxing during the golden era of heavyweights. Oh yes, the reader also gets a whiff of the sordid side of the fight game.”

—Ed Schuyler, Longtime national boxing writer for the Associated Press

“Tom Cushman is introspective and the best writer in any phase of sports that I have ever known. This book reflects just that.”

—Bob Knight, Hall of Fame basketball coach

“In writing about the last great era of heavyweights, Tom Cushman brought back some wonderful and some embarrassing memories I had long forgotten. Like the athletes he covered, he, too, was a heavyweight journalist. Without his help, I never would have made it.”

—J. Russell Peltz, boxing promoter, International Boxing Hall of Fame, class 2004

“A sports editor’s primary priority is to recruit the best possible writers and editors. Occasionally, among the talents acquired to attract and to hold readers, you get a super star who is also a super person. I hit the jackpot when I lured Tom Cushman away from Colorado to Philadelphia nearly 50 years ago. This master storyteller’s “good guy” quality has enabled him to click with characters who were unapproachable to other scribes. Cushman can play hardball when called for, but always with a fair shake—one communicator that sources and readers know they can trust. This (book) is sports writing at its finest.”

—Ben Callaway, former sports editor, Philadelphia Daily News

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