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Muhammad Ali is in the hospital now with a respiratory ailment (he's going to be released soon), but that reminds me that we don't have a thread for the person who just might be the most famous athlete who ever lived. I've always felt badly for Joe Frazier, because he didn't get the accolades that Ali did, but most of Ali's extra accolades came from what he did outside of the ring - he, himself, said that "Frazier was the greatest fighter of all times, next to me." Ali may not be immortal, but in a sense, he is - people will be talking about him 500 years from now, and that's as close to immortality as you can come. "Muhummad Ali vs. Sonny Liston (1965) - A Look Back 50 Years Later" And for a taste of what it must have been like to fight Ali in his prime, scroll down to the bottom of the first post in "Requiem for a Heavyweight (1956)" and click on the scene from the 1962 film.
Today is the 40th anniversary of one of the biggest sporting events in the history of the world of professional sports, The Thrilla in Manilla, or the third fight and rubber match of the epic boxing matches between Mohammed Ali and Joe_Frazier, The Thrilla in Manilla. It was far bigger than a sporting event, as Mohammed Ali, the world's most famous athlete, an entertainer, a "poet", and an amazing promoter in his own right, moved this fight into a sociological battle. The fight itself was brutal. These two extraordinary boxers had three epic battles spread over 1/2 a decade. It was personal human warfare. It was extraordinary. Here is a short summary video of the epic battle and the build up: There are full videos of this fourteen round brawl and epic battle between two valiant, very evenly matched boxers of different styles....but I think this summary gives a sense of the event.
Muhammad Ali vs. Sonny Liston, May 22, 1965: