October 25: The Legend of Sonny Liston: Cracking the Cold Case in Las Vegas
The Legend of Sonny Liston.
Cracking the Cold Case in Las Vegas.
Author Talk with Shaun Assael. Book signing to follow.
In the early 1960s, Sonny Liston was on top of the world as boxing’s heavyweight champion, but after he lost the title his life spiraled to a tragic end when he was found dead in his Las Vegas home in 1971.
In The Murder of Sonny Liston, investigative journalist Shaun Assael digs into the mysteries surrounding Liston’s death, links Liston to a prominent Mob figure and tells a fascinating story about the boxer’s tortured final years.
Following the heavyweight champion’s death, the Clark County coroner determined Liston had died of natural causes related to heart and breathing problems. As a result, Las Vegas Police did not investigate the case as a homicide.
But in a new book, , to be released just days before this event, Assael raises questions about whether Liston might have been murdered. He pursues leads suggesting several potential suspects who might have had motives to see Liston dead.
Assael’s story is set against the backdrop of Las Vegas in 1970, when Elvis Presley was performing at the International Hotel, Howard Hughes was running his empire from a penthouse suite at the Desert Inn and the Mob was still skimming millions from Strip casinos.
Shaun Assael, who has been with ESPN The Magazine since its launch in 1996, is a member of ESPN’s investigations unit and a regular contributor to the prime-time show E:60. He is also the author of four books: Wide Open: Days and Nights on the NASCAR Tour; Sex, Lies, and Headlocks, a New York Times best seller; and Steroid Nation, a definitive account of the steroid era, as well as his most-recent book, The Murder of Sonny Liston: Las Vegas, Heroin, and Heavyweights.