Muhammad Ali took turns in wrestling ring as well as boxing ring
Schwartz: What was it that made you decide you wanted to go to North Korea?
Flair: Well, initially it was going to be Ted Turner, Jimmy Carter, me and Muhammad Ali — in the end it just ended up being myself and Muhammad Ali and some other guys that worked on the undercard (the Steiner brothers, the Road Warriors, Chris Benoit, Dean Malenko, and Scott Norton to name a few). I just thought, number one, it’d be cool to travel with Muhammad Ali. Number two, it was a challenge, and I just thought it would be an experience to remember later in life.
Flair: They wouldn’t let us take pictures. You know what they gave Ali and I? They gave each one of us a huge engraved vase, that was the extent of what I brought back. I didn’t go shopping or anything, I just stayed in the hotel and did the tours that were pretty much mandatory. In all fairness, I can’t say they treated me badly. The watch thing still cracks me up, the guy wouldn’t stop talking about my watch. I almost wanted to give it to him to make sure I was going to get out of there.
I got ahold of Kenny to recall the event on Saturday, following Ali’s death on Friday. Kenny was known as the "Sodbuster” – and also for generally winding up on the wrong end of results, particularly on the AWA’s weekly wrestling shows. Question: "What was the action taking place?” Sodbuster: "Ali boxed; I wrestled.” Question: "How did that work?” Sodbuster: "Actually, it went pretty well. I got Ali in some holds and he landed some punches.” Question: "How did this come about?” Sodbuster: "Verne Gagne called me the night before and said there was a ticket for me to go to Chicago and take on Muhammad Ali. So, that’s what I did.” Question: "What was the result?” Sodbuster: "He knocked me out at the end of the second round.” Question: "I assume you were told beforehand to get knocked out at the end of the second round.” Sodbuster: "No, no … Ali got me with a good one.” Qbservation: "Nice to see you’re still sticking to the story after all these years, Kenny.” Sodbuster: (No comment).