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Boxing legend Muhammad Ali dies at 74

38 Comments
By TIM DAHLBERG

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38 Comments
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Rest in Peace, Muhammad. The greatest boxer - and arguably sportsperson - of all time.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Legend. One of the greatest athletes ever lived. Clever, charismatic and outrageously talented.

RIP.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

I am not a fan of boxing. (Look what it does to the health of its practitioners.) But I remember getting into a taxi at the old Bangkok airport in March 1971 and on the way into town hearing the fight being broadcast on the local radio by an announcer screaming in Thai. "Who win?" we asked the driver in broken English. "Joe Fraza" the driver replied. Ali was probably the world's most popular sports figure. I noticed the hate sites are already filling up with how he is certain to be eulogized by "his fellow Muslim, Obama." I must say, Ali showed a lot more class than the people who appear bent on smearing his memory any way they can.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Am not sure they were that close but in my mind Ali was the Martin Luther King of sports. He changed the way black sportsmen (and Muslims) were perceived and treated.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

This say's all you need to know about the man - said in 1967 at the height of his career when he had everything to lose but refused to go to Vietnam (where he would only have done exhibition fights):

“Why should they ask me to put on a uniform and go 10,000 miles from home and drop bombs and bullets on Brown people in Vietnam while so-called Negro people in Louisville are treated like dogs and denied simple human rights? No I’m not going 10,000 miles from home to help murder and burn another poor nation simply to continue the domination of white slave masters of the darker people the world over. This is the day when such evils must come to an end. I have been warned that to take such a stand would cost me millions of dollars. But I have said it once and I will say it again. The real enemy of my people is here. I will not disgrace my religion, my people or myself by becoming a tool to enslave those who are fighting for their own justice, freedom and equality. If I thought the war was going to bring freedom and equality to 22 million of my people they wouldn’t have to draft me, I’d join tomorrow. I have nothing to lose by standing up for my beliefs. So I’ll go to jail, so what? We’ve been in jail for 400 years.”

RIP Ali, a good man.

14 ( +16 / -1 )

I still don't want to believe it even as I'm sitting here watching the breaking news special report. He was such an inspiration to me growing up as a child, and he made such an impact on my life. Greatest of all time is right because Muhammad Ali wasn't a legend, he was THE LEGEND!! Float on Mr. Ali, float on.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

RIP Muhammad Ali one of the greatest boxers of all times very sad news.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

May he rest in peace and may we see him again in the next life

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Ali was the greatest, he really was. The Champ, he transcended everything.

Young people you have no idea what you missed. For more than a decade, he made boxing respectable again, he was so unique, so special. He made it fun. He was the best there ever was, and he was quick, he was a wit.

There will never be another Muhammed Ali.

Rest in peace, Champ.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Think what you like about boxing (I think it's stupid), you cannot deny the man was a legend, and always will be. RIP

4 ( +9 / -5 )

A brave man who walked his talk, but had to pay a heavy price for doing so. RIP

3 ( +4 / -1 )

When I was a kid, my father told me that he had passed by Muhammad Ali several times in various airports across the U.S. My father said that Ali was always surrounded by groups of children and he'd be playing around with them as they followed him around. I asked him to get me an autograph the next time he saw him. My father did happen to see Ali again in an airport after that, and my father stood there amongst the children waiting to get his autograph. After giving his autograph, my father said, "Thank you very much, Mr. Ali.", and Ali said, "You're very welcome." A true gentleman.

RIP

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Sometimes annoying, always inspiring. He personified the expression "boys be ambitious".

0 ( +8 / -8 )

Yes ... Ali was a great boxer. Loved to watch him box. The Thrilla in Manila and the battle in Zaire were great fights ... but they surely took their toll on Ali ... especially in playing a big part in his bad health following his retirement.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The Greatest!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Is it 'great' to receive so many punches to your brain? He was an exceptional boxer but 'greatness' is much more than just out-maneuvering and out-talking your opponents. To purposefully put yourself in a situation where you have damage done to yourself doesn't seem 'great' to me. Skillful yes, a clever talker yes, great - not at all. IMO

-16 ( +0 / -16 )

Ali was not only boxing iconic legend,but a master of technique.The strategy he used to beat Foreman,the brutal unbeatable boxer was amazing,no one else did before.no one even imagine he could beat the horrible Foreman,but he did it and it was a shock and a miracle.Rest in peace Ali.All time iconic legendary boxer,its a sad day.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

It is difficult to assess Ali's true stature as a boxer because his career in the ring was interrupted and essentially destroyed by the white racist establishment. Blinded by the eulogies and encomiums of the hypocritical hyenas of the Fourth Estate many people have forgotten or have been distracted from viewing the historical record of how the US government and its minions waging a criminal war of aggression against the people of Vietnam were grimly determined to show Ali who really was "the Greatest". Fortunately, their vicious hounding of Ali and his public martyrdom at their blood-stained hands backfired forging the legend that has been burnished by the passage of time.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

From a very divisive figure to a revered humanity ambassador the world over. What a turnaround. Spent his later years a global traveler inspiring people. They're replaying his famous fights on TV right now. From America to Africa to the Philippines, places where he helped popularize the sport as well as its peoples, flags be flying half-staff. Rope a dope RIP

1 ( +2 / -1 )

To purposefully put yourself in a situation where you have damage done to yourself doesn't seem 'great' to me. Skillful yes, a clever talker yes, great - not at all. IMO

Obviously you don't know the first thing about him and what he stood for. He was suspended 3 years- the prime of his career and lost millions - because of his objection to the Vietnam War. He fought against racism when it wasn't a fad, but dangerous. He transcended boxing to become one of the most famous men on earth.

Its a shame you spout off without doing a bit of homework.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Some movie studio should come out of left field and make a movie based on the Superman vs. Muhammad Ali comic of the late 1970s. Ali won the fight of course.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Is it 'great' to receive so many punches to your brain? He was an exceptional boxer but 'greatness' is much more than just out-maneuvering and out-talking your opponents. To purposefully put yourself in a situation where you have damage done to yourself doesn't seem 'great' to me. Skillful yes, a clever talker yes, great - not at all. IMO

Yes, it is your opinion but he has just passed away so how about a bit of respect. To many of us he was more than a sportsman or boxer and we wish to express our admiration for him by responding to an article about his death without fear. Also, for me Ali was part of my childhood and I would watch the fights with my father. My father died about a year and a half ago from a Parkinson related disease (PSP) so Ali's death brings back memories of my father.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Muhammad Ali quips and witticisms were as potent as his boxing ...two of my favorites...

"Impossible is just a word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they've been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It's an opinion. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing."

"Silence is golden when you can't think of a good answer.".....

Muhammad Ali won't be forgotten..

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Ali really did float like a butterfly and sting lke a bee. RIP.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Impossible is nothing.

I am very ashamed to admit I thought this was a slogan coined by Adidas! Ali was super-articulate for a sports star. My fave will always be -- "Float like a Butterfly, sting like a bee."

4 ( +5 / -1 )

There are very few people who are recognized anywhere in the world; Ali was one, the other is Pele. Both black men. I grew up with them in the same way that young kids are now growing up with Usain Bolt. My friends who were black would dance on the back yard picnic table proclaiming, "I'm Cassius Clay, I'm Cassius Clay..."

We have to remember though, that he was shunned, ostracized, and hated when he stood as a man for his principals. There are many who laud him now, but how did they actually feel at that time? I was confused, I didn't know at that time exactly what he stood for, but as I said, I grew up with him, and as I began to know, I began to know. And as he passes now, with the name of Muhammad Ali, do we still shun and ostracize the ordinary Muslim who emigrated to the U.S. and wish harm on them just as some did to the "Greatest?" Ali's legacy is not only in the boxing ring, but his legacy should be for what he accomplished outside of the ring. He should be remembered for his principals which were important then as it is now. Because of his timelessness, he can share the name of "The Greatest."

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I doubt we'll see a sportsperson of his stature come along again in our lifetimes. Athletes just don't effect national and international "culture" in this way any longer. No doubt he was the greatest sports figure of the 20th century. He was a flawed individual though. What he did and said during the "thrilla in Manilla" just beggars belief. Really despicable. Yet, in other parts of his life he he showed a lot of character. A complicated person to be sure...a man for his time and for the times. The latter part of the 20th century wouldn't have been the same without him.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

One of the best! You can't get better and they don't come any better, a real true American hero. So many talents, so any accomplishments, the greatest boxer, won titles, lost them, fighter in and out of the ring, suffered Parkinson disease for a very long time and STILL continued to fight on for the causes that he believed in, cared about everyone, never giving in, giving up and never feeling sorry for himself. A true champion and a true legend. One of my biggest heroes. You will always be remembered for your bravery and determination and dedication. You were an inspiration to NOT only Americans, but to everyone in world, regardless of class, nationality, sex or religion.

RIP

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Very sad news. May the legend rest in peace.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Who cares? elevating a brutal expert in an absurd sport in which you win by hitting your opponent until he falls down and blacks out is silly beyond words. I am sorry he died but frankly dont care at all.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

Bumped into Muhammad once in San Francisco. he was staggering around the Embarcadero. I gave him directions to a restaurant

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

frankly dont care at all

Fair enough. But as you can see from the various posts here, his impact was immense. I said earlier that he was sometimes annoying; he was for sure a loud mouth. But, to coin a phrase, he put his money where his mouth was. When he refused to fight in Viet Nam, his words awoke the things I was taught from the Bible as a kid. "Shoot them for what? They never called me ni**er." A lesson I hope to take to the grave.

(rules caused me to edit. t)

3 ( +4 / -1 )

It's weird that some people think other people shouldn't box, because the thinker doesn't like boxing.

If the thinker doesn't like boxing, they shouldn't box. If the boxer likes boxing, they should be able to box.

RIP Ali. I've watched a few of his old fights from back in the day. Very entertaining fighter.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Thinking about him from those days, when I was a boy, ten. He was bigger than life, to me certainly, little white kid living in the suburbs. Not knowing much about much of anything of real importance. The nation becoming ripped apart by the war, black and white, Emmett Till, Malcolm X, King, JFK, Bobby, LBJ, Nixon. What more? How many more? I feel lucky. Lucky that I got out alive. Lucky that I lived with Muhammad Ali in my lifetime. Loud, proud, and not afraid. I AM THE GREATEST! Gives me courage. Me too. I AM THE GREATEST! Thanks champ.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Agree you cared enough to post in the negative, no matter what he was in your mind and posted.

Either way he touched your life and left an impression.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Truly among the best heavyweights of all time and very possibly the greatest.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The celebration of Ali's stature as "All-American Hero" has attracted the usual pack of vultures, the hypocritical honkie pols who can smell a chance to profit from the demise of "The Greatest" and polish their tarnished ( often racist) reputations. Perhaps the shame of Ali's victimization by Whiteamerika is too deep and raw thus explaining the deafening silence in the media surrounding his suffering at the hands of the political establishment and their henchmen from the Fourth Estate,but those of my generation who place the highest value on truth have not forgotten the sickening treatment meted out to Ali. Those of later generations have the duty to search through the historical record to uncover what his martyrdom meant and who his victimizers were. The popular media explanation for Ali's thirty years of suffering from Parkinson's is that the cause was the blows he sustained to his head during his boxing career. No media comment can be found connecting Ali's Parkinson's to the fact that his head injuries were sustained only in the latter half of his career AFTER he made his comeback. Had his boxing career not been stopped for political and racist reasons, I believe he would not have suffered so much brain damage. Those of us privileged to have seen him boxing in his prime remember that his proud, handsome face was unblemished, his head being almost untouchable as none of his opponents could get close to him. The unpalatable but probable truth is that the tragic consequence of his political persecution was Ali's ultimate physical destruction. Those who are today gladly celebrating his life, and yet are in full denial about the guilt of the white racists who destroyed him, should, as Bob Dylan righteously sang, " take the rag away from your face, now ain't the time for your tears."

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

U-S reamer, you shut down the discussion! Interesting thoughts.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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