Diamonds In The Ring

Boosted by the daughters of Ali and Frazier, women's boxing is losing its novelty-act status and gaining real fans

Joe Frazier is--thwack!--training a boxer on the heavy bag at his North Philadelphia gym. "Don't reach," Frazier admonishes. Louder thwacks. Suddenly the former heavyweight champion stops, squints his eyes, then gently wipes the boxer's runny nose with his gloved hand. "What?" the younger athlete says, momentarily self-conscious. "Do I have snot there?"

Such intimate moments between the legend and his charges are rare, but the boxer Smokin' Joe is coaching today is his daughter Jacquelyn Frazier-Lyde, 39, who turned pro in January. Since Muhammad Ali's fierce 22-year-old daughter Laila made a splash in her pro debut last October, Frazier-Lyde has ratcheted...

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