|In 1986 Effanbee captured this great likeness of Muhammad Ali in doll form.|
Growing up in a house full of men: three brothers and my father, one of them was bound to enjoy sports. They all loved boxing and would watch boxing matches on TV whenever they aired. I was never a fan of that or any sport, but particularly boxing, which I find to be brutal and senseless. I do not like pain and do not like to see it inflicted upon anyone else, especially intentionally.
Why two men would dress in trunks and prance around in a boxing ring to brutalize one another for as many rounds as it took for one to be defeated, or for the match to be ended by the referee to stop the brutality, was beyond my scope of reasoning. But whenever Muhammad Ali was in the ring and before things became too brutal, I'd watch him fight for a while. I found his pre-fight bragging and boasting about what he was going to do to his opponent fascinating, and more times than not, his predictions came true within the round he predicted.
Muhammad Ali is the only boxer, professional or otherwise, that I have ever admired because he was his own man, who refused to be defined by others' rules and their attempted exploitation. Even at the expense of almost losing his career and becoming financially destitute because he didn't play by their game, he remained steadfast in his convictions. Overall he triumphed in his fight to maintain and practice his Islamic faith and was able to return to the sport that he so dearly loved, boxing.
|One of Ali's greatest rivals in boxing was Joe Frazier (Smokin' Joe). The two were captured in 12-inch action-figure form in this Ali vs. Frazier boxed set by Starting Lineup, 1998.|
It is unfortunate that the brutality of boxing eventually led to Ali's diagnosis of Parkinson's disease and his physical deterioration and demise. This grave diagnosis was most probably his greatest battle, over which he did not become the victor.
|Muhammad Ali, January 17, 1942 - June 3, 2016. He is still the GOAT. May he rest in powerful peace. |
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