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Sports in brief: Ali pays respects at Joe Frazier memorial

boxing

ali pays respects at memorial for former champ frazier

PHILADELPHIA — With his championship belt and a pair of gloves draped over his casket, Joe Frazier was going one more round.

The Rev. Jesse Jackson asked mourners to rise, put their hands together and for one last time "show your love" for the former heavyweight champion.

Muhammad Ali obliged.

A frail and trembling Ali rose and vigorously clapped for "Smokin' Joe," the fighter who handed Ali his first loss.

Ali was among the nearly 4,000 who packed the Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church on Monday for a two-hour "joyful celebration" of Frazier's life. He died last week of liver cancer; he was 67. Also attending were former heavyweight champion Larry Holmes and Don King.

Jackson delivered a stirring eulogy, describing Frazier as someone who "came from segregation, degradation and disgrace to amazing grace."

Mike Tyson sent a videotaped message of condolence, as did Donald Trump and Mickey Rourke.

autos

Power returns to track after fatal crash

Will Power was back in a race car for the first time since breaking his back in the IndyCar Series finale last month at Las Vegas.

Power ran 115 laps at Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama, and said he felt fine and had no soreness in his back.

"Physically, I felt absolutely fine, great, no soreness at all where I hurt my back," he said. "I felt bloody good."

Power had been sidelined since sustaining two compression fractures in his thoracic vertebrae in the Oct. 16 race at Las Vegas. Two-time Indianapolis 500 winner and St. Petersburg resident Dan Wheldon was killed in the 15-car accident.

soccer

Beckham, Arena honored by MLS

David Beckham has been voted Major League Soccer's comeback player of the year after missing most of the 2010 season because of a torn Achilles tendon.

The former England captain set up 15 goals for the Los Angeles Galaxy, which finished the season with the best regular-season record.

The Galaxy's Bruce Arena became the first three-time winner of coach of the year. He also won in 1997 with D.C. United and 2009 with the Galaxy.

et cetera

Cycling: Alberto Contador can expect to find out in January if he will keep his 2010 Tour de France victory. The Court of Arbitration for Sport said a verdict is expected in early 2012 after a four-day hearing into the Spanish rider's case next week. Contador is due to appear at the highest court in world sports in Lausanne, Switzerland, to present his defense that contaminated beef caused his positive test for clenbuterol.

Times wires

Sports in brief: Ali pays respects at Joe Frazier memorial 11/14/11 [Last modified: Monday, November 14, 2011 10:27pm]
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