It might sound nuts, but Joe Frazier’s jock strap, guardian of the family jewels and protector of the package, is up for auction and can be the crown jewel in someone’s boxing collection.
Worn on March 8, 1971 during his fight against Muhammad Ali, this is not your typical sports memorabilia item for obvious reasons. And unlike many cards, autographed baseballs, or game-worn jerseys, you’ll only find this one. No variations, no replicas, nothing else quite as personal as that which came from “where the sun don’t shine”, the only part of Frazier not bathed in spotlights and flash bulbs during one of boxing’s most historic nights.
Joe Frazier (Jan. 12, 1944 – Nov. 7, 2011) is boxing royalty. A legend. Twenty-seven KOs in 37 bouts, only four losses, and one of the meanest left hooks anyone had ever seen. Some say that Muhammad Ali’s success and popularity were largely thanks to the much hyped and heavily marketed rivalry with Smokin’ Joe. The significance of this item is largely because of that rivalry. “The Fight of the Century” was their first fight, and Frazier won by unanimous decision after 15 rounds. David Wolf, a member of Frazier’s camp during all three fights against Ali, asked Frazier if he could have the jock strap after Frazier’s victory. Many years later, after Wolf’s death, it was found in his home with other relics from Frazier’s career.
As collectibles and sports memorabilia go, Joe Frazier’s jock strap is definitely a rare item, but this is made all the more valuable by the fact that this legendary boxer who won this equally legendary fight is still a household name in a sport that doesn’t have as many of those as other popular spots in the United States. This was the heyday of boxing, the beginning of previously unheard of multi-million dollar fights and media blitzes.
From the same fight, Goldin Auctions also has the very items that posed a direct threat to Frazier’s manhood, Muhammad Ali’s fight-worn gloves. A collector’s match made in heaven?