Muhammad Ali, born  Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr., January 17, 1942 – June 3, 2016

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Very sorry to hear that.

Popularly the greatest boxer ever, and a figure of world importance.

He really was larger than life.

Doggone it. I saw him at the Civil Rights Game down in Cincinnati back in 2009. They had him stand up to say a few words, and he couldn't even string two words together; it was so sad. He has been pretty sick for awhile.

I had a big fold-out poster of him hanging in my classroom for a long time from Sports Illustrated until it finally just fell apart. His name always comes up in karate classes when we talk about using your footwork during sparring sessions.

This has been a really bad year for legends -- six months in, we've lost Natalie Cole, Maurice White of Earth, Wind and Fire, David Bowie, Jefferson Airplane founding members Paul Kantner and Signe Toly Anderson (on the same day!), Garry Shandling, George Kennedy, Glenn Frey of the Eagles, Harper Lee, Vanity, Morley Safer, Prince, and now Muhammad Ali, too? I hope Stevie Wonder and Sidney Poitier are keeping healthy ... 

Lots of memories watching boxing with my father when I was a kid. Back then, pay-per-view television hadn't been developed, so all the big championship matches were on network television, and Muhammad Ali was on TV as much as any prime-time actor. 

The Greatest? No doubt. How great? Dig this: Once, Muhammad Ali went up against the national heavyweight boxing champion of England. And Ali beat this guy so bad --

"How bad did Muhammad Ali beat this guy?"

-- Muhammad Ali beat this guy so bad, that when he went back home to England, he got suspended from boxing for a year for embarrassing the nation! And not only that, Ali beat this guy SO BAD -- 

"HOW bad did Muhammad Ali beat this guy?"

-- his manager was banned from boxing for life!

There were times during his championship when he was defending the title every on almost a monthly basis, something unimaginable in these days.

Don Mankowski said:

There were times during his championship when he was defending the title every on almost a monthly basis, something unimaginable in these days.

Today they delay as long as possible to avoid defeat and/or to drive up their price.

Rest in peace, champ.  You were, and always will be, the greatest of all time.

Don Mankowski said:

There were times during his championship when he was defending the title every on almost a monthly basis, something unimaginable in these days.


Richard Willis said:

Today they delay as long as possible to avoid defeat and/or to drive up their price.

Back in those days, they hadn't yet developed pay-per-view, and even basic cable TV was something only for people in Appalachia or otherwise places where a broadcast signal couldn't reach, meaning boxers made their money by actually fighting boxing matches. Muhammad Ali's heyday was 20 or 30 years before the real money was available via fat TV contracts and endorsements. He might have quadrupled if not quintupled his income that way. Being an Olympic medalist alone would make Ali some serious cash if he was starting out today ...

... although that whole business about refusing the draft and taking it all the way to the Supreme Court would have made most endorsers skittish, I have to admit. 

As I grew up largely in the 70's and 80's Ali was a large part of my childhood, particularly as a sports and boxing fan. It wasn't just his ability to deliver a promo, it was also his tremendous ability and caginess in the ring. I'll never forget his fight against George Foreman and the "rope-a-dope".

In many ways, he was the last truly great boxer. Boxing hasn't been the same since that era, and while there have been some standouts, the field is not what it used to be. He was truly a legend.

From Darrin Bell, a great newspaper comics creator and a great editorial cartoon creator.

Difficult to find this on the GCD. You won't get it by typing in his name.

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