Bouts of Mania describes the glorious era when Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, and George Foreman fought each other in every possible combination, on nearly every possible continent. In their most memorable bouts from 1971 to 1975, the three men created athletic set pieces that continue to resonate: the Fight of the Century, Down Goes Frazier!, the Rumble in the Jungle, and the Thrilla in Manila. Their fights for the heavyweight belt (when that title still meant something) made for a roiling and convulsive tournament, all the more striking against a backdrop of national dysfunction. In fact, their heroic efforts—global spectacles that offered brief glimpses of clarity and confidence—may have been the only thing that made sense back home during the social and political morass of the 1970s.
In Bouts of Mania, Richard Hoffer, a longtime writer for Sports Illustrated, evokes all the hopes and hoopla, the hype and hysteria of boxing's last and best golden age.”