Ike Fluellen, a policeman in the Houston suburb of Bellaire, Tex., has told the Washington Post he was asked by a District Heights, Md., man to compete in the U.S. Boxing Championships even though Fluellen had not fought for 1 1/2 years.
Fluellen said the man who invited him to box in the tournament was Chris Cline, who has managed fighters in this area for many years.
Fluellen said he has given an affidavit to the American Broadcasting Company in which he said he was subsequently rated among the top 10 junior middleweights by Ring magazine.
Fluellen added that ABC has forwarded the affidavit to a federal grand jury in Baltimore.
He said he agreed to participate for a $5,000 purse, saying he had never earned more than $700 for about before, and told Cline, "I'd fight anybody for that much."
Cline, whose son, Biff, a heavyweight, lost a fight in the tournament, told Fluellen his purse would be either $5,000 or $10,000. Later, the purses were set on the basis of weight divisions.
Fluellen said he received a contract from promoter Don King, via Cline. "But," he added, "all of a sudden after Kenny Weldon and Scott LeDoux brought to light their charges against the tournament, I wasn't able to reach Cline or anybody.
"I realized they were under scrutiny. I think I'd still be in the tourney if those things had not come to light."
Fluellen said he did not compete in the tournament, nor did he receive any money.
"Me and Cline never got down to how much I would pay him. He said he ought to get a manager's cut or one-third to one-half of my purse."
"I didn't ask for anything," Cline said. "He's told some lies. He had lost only two bouts. I checked his record and took it to Ring magazine. He called me first; ask Doc Denaux in Houston. They called me together. Doc asked me to help Fluellen."
Denaux said "Fluellen wanted to buy a house and me and him called Cline together. Fluellen called Cline a few times himself. Cline was just trying to help him."
"I had been retired for 1 1/2 years when I was contacted by Chris Cline and asked if I'd like to get in the tourney. I didn't see how I could because my last bout had been in October, 1975," Fluellen said.
"He told me he would get me in, get me rated in the top 10. I was a middleweight but I got down to a junior-middleweight and was rated No. 3 in the United States and 12th in the world by Ring magazine.
"I had never gotten more than $700 in tank towns around Texas and in Mexico. If you don't have connections, you don't get big fights, no matter what your record is.
"Almost immediately (after talking with Cline) I got an invitation from Don King, in a letter mailed to me in care of Cline, which Cline forwarded to me.
"King said it was because of the rating I picked up in the January issue of Ring. I was ranked No. 10 in the U.S. junior-middleweights. It was the first time I was ever in the rankings. I had been 14-0 once in my career but I did not get in the top 10. Then I got in the top 10 with no fights at all.
"Without any fights I went from 10 to three.
"Did you see the film "Rocky"? I felt just like him, getting a chance to prove I was somebody. I had fought since 1969, but never made any money."
Cline denies ever asking Fluellen for any money. "I said, 'Win the tournament, if you want to take care of me, O.K.' I never asked for a penny. All I did was to try to help him to win."
The CBS "Who's Who" television program last week asserted that Cline and the tournament listed Biff Cline's record as 13-0, when the heavyweight had been knocked out by Johnny Blaine in Providence, R.I., on June 26, 1976. Reporter Dan Rather pointed out that Blaine's record in Ring was listed as no victories in seven bouts.
Cline said his son was illegally hit on the back of the head. Cline demanded the bout be called "no contest."
A spokesman for the Rhode Island boxing commission told CBS, ABC and The Washington Post that Cline was told he could have a hearing on his version, but that Cline never appeared and the bout was listed as a knockout.