Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali's "Fight of the Century" is now forever preserved in bronze.
The two athletes' likenesses were unveiled Monday in a statue commemorating the 50th anniversary of their famous heavyweight bout at Madison Square Garden in New York City, which took place on March 8, 1971.
The statue is expected to be displayed going forward at a planned sports museum in Pennsylvania, according to the Associated Press, while a mural honoring Frazier by artist Ernel Martinez is now viewable in North Philadelphia.
The AP shared a video of the unveiling of the 9-foot, 1,600-lb. statue during a ceremony in Feasterville, Pennsylvania — which included a speech from the late champion's son, Joe Frazier Jr.
"In 50 years, it's still the biggest event that has ever happened in the history of sports," Frazier Jr. said. "It transcends all generations."
"I have two 7-year-olds, an 18-year-old, I've watched the fight with them. They love it [and] they don't know anything about boxing," he continued. "But they just know what's happening. They can see the passion."
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"And I would say to everybody out there that you don't have to be great to start — you have to start in order to be great," Frazier Jr. added.
A plaque presented alongside the statue describes the fight, in which "two undefeated boxing Heavyweight Champions fought before the entire world for 15 rounds of gruesome combat" before Frazier won.
"There has not been a comparable sports contest since this event," the plaque continues. "Early in the 15th round, Joe Frazier sent Muhammad Ali to the canvas. At the time, Joe Frazier lived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Muhammad Ali in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. Both fighters and their amazing fight lore are part of the great sports heritage of the Greater Philadelphia area."
"In a time of civil unrest, these two gladiators united the country with their differing, but righteous, principles," it concluded.
Frazier died at age 67 in 2011 after a battle with liver cancer, while Ali died almost five years later following his hospitalization for respiratory complications. He was 74.
Before Frazier's death, his former competitor sent public prayers and well-wishes.
"The news about Joe is hard to believe and even harder to accept," Ali said in a statement to CBS back in November 2011. "Joe is a fighter and a champion and I am praying he is fighting now."
Saying he was keeping Frazier in his family's "daily prayers," Ali added, "Joe has a lot of friends pulling for him, and I'm one of them."
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