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Everything You Need to Read and Watch About Muhammad Ali

Getty Images
Getty Images

Muhammad Ali has died at the age of 74. Ali, born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr. in Louisville, Kentucky, was admitted to a Phoenix-area hospital earlier this week due to respiratory issues, and his condition quickly worsened. His death was confirmed in a statement by a family spokesperson late Friday night.

A boxing legend, an unapologetic iconoclast, and a relentless cultural lightning rod at a time when American society was most in need of a shock, Ali left as deep an imprint on this country as any athlete ever has. He was the first man to win the heavyweight title three times, and he continued to influence the world long after he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 1984. In honor of the Greatest, here is a guide to appreciating his life and legacy — and the undeniable impact he left behind.

What to Read

“Alex Haley Interviews Cassius Clay (Muhammad Ali),” Playboy, October 1964

“‘Lawdy, Lawdy, He’s Great,’” by Mark Kram, Sports Illustrated, October 1975

“Watching ‘Rocky II’ With Muhammad Ali,” by Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times, July 1979

“My Dinner With Ali,” by Davis Miller, Louisville Courier-Journal Magazine, January 1989

“Ali and His Entourage,” by Gary Smith, Sports Illustrated, April 1988

“American Hunger,” by David Remnick, The New Yorker, October 1998

“What Muhammad Ali means to me,” by Barack Obama, USA Today, November 2009

“Muhammad Ali: What I’ve Learned,” by Cal Fussman, Esquire, January 2012

“The story behind the greatest photograph in sports history,” by Jai Bednall,, May 2015

“The Legacy: At 73, Muhammad Ali remains an inspirational force,” by Tim Layden, Sports Illustrated, September 2015

What to Watch

Radio broadcast of Clay vs. Sonny Liston, Round 1:

Ali vs. George Foreman, the full fight:

Malcolm X talks about Clay, soon to become Ali:

Ali talks about the Vietnam War:

Ali mocks Joe Frazier on The Dick Cavett Show:

Ali “attacks” Howard Cosell:

The Mike Douglas Show with Sly Stone and Ali:

A child asks Ali what he’s going to do after he retires from boxing:

I Am the Greatest: The Adventures of Muhammad Ali:

Ali lights the torch at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta:

Part 1 of When We Were Kings:

Trailer to Michael Mann’s Ali:

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