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Muhammad Ali

Muhammad Ali: Portrait of a Champion – Book Excerpts

An abstract portrait of legendary boxing champion Muhammad Ali, uniquely composed of memories, anecdotes, interviews, personal encounters, insider stories, artwork, photos, sketches, etc. 220 pages.

BOOK EXCERPTS
Bob Foster (Ali opponent and former Light Heavyweight champion): “I was on the same card at Caesars with Muhammad Ali. He fought Jerry Quarry and I was fighting his brother Mike Quarry (billed as “The Quarry Brothers vs. The Soul Brothers”). Before the fights that night, Ali bet me $1,000 that he could stop Jerry Quarry before I could stop Mike. I said, ‘I’ll take that bet.’ Because I knew Ali couldn’t punch that hard. And Jerry was tough. I ended up winning the bet. I knocked Mike Quarry out with one shot. And Ali paid me too. ‘Cause he knew if he didn’t, I’d have kicked his ass, right there in Caesars Palace!”
 
Mrs. Deanna Dempsey (Wife of former Heavyweight champion Jack Dempsey): “We met Muhammad Ali in San Juan, Puerto Rico after he beat Jean-Pierre Coopman in 1976. He was young and handsome and vital and so full of life. After the fight, as he was coming down the steps from the ring, Ali spotted Jack and he said, ‘Mr. Dempsey, can I call you Jack?’ Jack said, ‘Everybody calls me Jack.’ Then Muhammad said, Oh Jack, you were the greatest!’ And Jack said, ‘But Muhammad, I thought you always said YOU were the greatest?’ Ali said, ‘Jack. When I say I’m the greatest, it’s all bullshit!'” Continue reading

Muhammad Ali “And In This Corner” Premiere in Louisville

StageOne Family Theatre, Louisville, KY’s professional theatre for young audiences, presents a new look at the life and legacy of Muhammad Ali with the world premiere production of And in This Corner…Cassius Clay, on January 17, 2015, Ali’s 73rd birthday. Dubbed “Play it Forward: Champions Night,” the evening will feature a gala dinner as well as the play, and a post-show champagne reception honoring the Champ and the new production. The event will be co-hosted by StageOne Family Theatre, The Muhammad Ali Center and The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts. Performances will continue atThe Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts from January 19th to February 14th. Continue reading

This Day in Boxing History: Ali vs. Spinks II – September 15, 1978

Approximately 13 years before Muhammad Ali ever stepped into a boxing ring with Leon Spinks, then Cassius Clay had overcome great odds by defeating Sonny Liston to become World Heavyweight Champion.

Ali went on to successfully defend that title nine times against such legendary boxers as George Chuvalo, Cleveland Williams, and Floyd Patterson.

However, Ali was stripped of the belt because of his refusal to report for induction into the U.S. military for the Vietnam War.

Continue reading

Gloves worn by Muhammad Ali sold at auction Thursday for $388,871

Everlast, the global leader in fight sports, is indisputably the most iconic and recognizable brand in the sport of boxing. The Everlast gloves worn by Muhammad Ali in his 1971 fight against rival Joe Frazier sold at auction Thursday for $388,871. The fight, nicknamed “Fight of the Century”, ended by unanimous decision and solidified Frazier as the Heavyweight Champion of the world. The gloves were purchased by an anonymous bidder at an auction in Cleveland, OH. Continue reading

Tonight on HBO2 – Ali-Frazier I: One Nation… Divisible

Recognized as sports television’s best storyteller and the leading TV platform for boxing, HBO Sports presents five of its acclaimed boxing documentaries on consecutive Thursday evenings this summer on HBO2. Featuring HBO Sports’ trademark blend of unseen archival footage, home movies, revealing interviews and unique storytelling, the festival launches June 26 with the powerful ALI-FRAZIER I: ONE NATION… DIVISIBLE and concludes with the celebrated 2013 presentation LEGENDARY NIGHTS: THE TALE OF GATTI-WARD. Continue reading

Counterpunch: Ali, Tyson, the Brown Bomber, and Other Stories of the Boxing Ring

In feature stories and his “Sports of the Times” column for The New York Times, Ira Berkow intimately covered boxing, interviewing some of the best fighters in the sport’s history and writing about them with his signature warm and personal prose. From memories of Muhammad Ali, Joe Louis and Jack Dempsey to reflections on Mike Tyson and Floyd Mayweather, Berkow has reported on many of the boxing greats first-hand and focused on the special significance that boxing has had on American culture. Continue reading

Muhammad Ali statement regarding the death of Jimmy Ellis

Lonnie and I are very saddened by the loss of our friend, and fellow Louisvillian, Jimmy Ellis. Our friendship began on the local Louisville boxing show “Tomorrow’s Champions” and continued to grow throughout the years. In the ring he was tough. In the world of heavyweights, I have always thought that Jimmy was one of the best. As a former champion, Jimmy was known for exceptional hand speed and a strong chin. He was a master in the ring. Jimmy and I were both trained by Angelo Dundee, who would often say that Jimmy “packed more punch” than he was ever given credit for. Strong chin and punching power aside, it was his gentle manner and the compassion in his heart that I found most worthy of admiration. I had a kinship with Jimmy and felt like he and I were of the same cloth. He was a great athlete and a caring man. Great competitors who happen to be great friends are rare. Jimmy Ellis was that to me and I will miss him.

–Muhammad Ali

Muhammad Ali wants Mayweather to fight Pacquiao

Much of boxing made a mistake underestimating the capability of the underdog champion to beat a pound-for-pound god. Floyd Mayweather Jr. must have realized he committed an equally big mistake handpicking the Argentine assault guru, Marcos Maidana.

Heavy favorite Mayweather lost yesterday many times over and in ways more than one even though the bias opinions didn’t reflect the judgment and cards didn’t read the way it should. However, Floyd’s poor performance in the fight didn’t cause him less a superb boxer in my estimation because I never was ever blinded by the facade and shows in the past like the jerks. I remain a fan and admirer of Floyd’s wizardry in the ring. Maidana was not underrated. It was Mayweather who was overrated by the normally jerk “experts.” And for them, it was well worth it as they all cry a bucket now and ask “bakit” (why). Continue reading

NIASHF Congratulates Muhammad Ali

Chicago, IL (February 24, 2014) – February 25 marks the 50th anniversary of Muhammad Ali’s historic victory over Sonny Liston to become the World Heavyweight Boxing Champion. The National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame (NIASHF) not only recognizes Ali for his extraordinary accomplishment, they thank him for his continued and ongoing support of their organization and charitable programs. Continue reading

Ali’s gloves from historic Liston fight fetch $836,000 at auction

The unforgettable first fight between Muhammad Ali and Sonny Liston is 50-years old on Tuesday and yesterday, the gloves the then Cassius Clay wore when he shook up the world sold at auction for just under $900,00. An anonymous bidder now owns this piece of fistic history and the bounty he or she paid goes to show how big and important and just plain special Ali was, is and always will be.

Back a half century ago, nobody thought the brash, somewhat annoying loudmouth would really amount to too much; certainly nobody from the fight fraternity thought Clay stood any chance against the fearsome “unbeatable” Liston. Even today, with Ali’s legend secure, there are many people who refuse to accept Clay’s 7th round retirement victory as legit. Liston took a dive they claimed then and they claim today; and as for the massive controversy the second fight and its “Phantom Punch” caused – forget it! Continue reading