Former heavyweight boxing champ Ken Norton, who once broke Muhammad Ali's jaw in the ring, died at a nursing home in Las Vegas, his son said. He was 70.

Norton compiled a record of 42-7-1 with 33 knockouts.

For boxing fans, Norton will be forever linked to Ali.

The ex-Marine broke Ali's jaw in their first confrontation, a 1973 non-title bout in San Diego.

Norton won that fight on a split decision, but went on to lose - narrowly - his other two clashes with Ali, including a 1976 title bout at Yankee Stadium.

The following year, Norton prevailed in a heavyweight title eliminator and the World Boxing Council proclaimed him the champion. He lost the crown on June 9, 1978, in a legendary 15-round battle with Larry Holmes.

Norton, who fought for the last time in November 1981, went on to appear in several films and work as a boxing commentator.

The boxer's son, Ken Norton Jr., was a linebacker with the NFL Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers and is now an assistant coach with the Seattle Seahawks. EFE