Muhammad Ali

“Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee” -Muhammad Ali Muhammad Ali was born on January 17, 1942 and is from Louisville, Kentucky. When he was first born, his name was Cassius Clay Jr. (named after his father). His mother’s name is Odessa Clay. His boxing career started when he was around the age of 12. In 1954, his bike was stolen and began to have an interest in boxing.

He was taught by an officer named Joe E. Martin. Ali was dedicated and won most of his matches. His overall winning streak was superb since he improved throughout his years. In 1960, Muhammad Ali graduated from central High school in Louisville.

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He went to the Rome Olympics and won an Olympic gold medal in the light-heavyweight division. Ali also wins his first professional fight. On February 25, 1964, Muhammad Ali and Sonny Liston fought. He won because he was swift and was light on his feet. Ali did what exactly his quote said, “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.” In his career, Ali showed that he was Muslim after he fought Liston.

He was a member of the Nation of Islam. His leader’s name was Elijah Muhammad. Elijah gave Cassius Clay (Muhammad Ali) a new name because his old name sounded like a slave name. His new name is Muhammad Ali, which is the name that most people know him by. During that same year, he failed the U.S.

Armed Forces qualifying test because of his English abilities. In 1966, the tests changed and he was reclassified. This meant he could be drafted into the army when the U.S. was in the Vietnam War.

He refused to go several times and was arrested. Ali was found guilty and his case went to the Supreme Court and they reversed his conviction. The New York State Athletic Commission suspended his boxing license and took his away his title. Muhammad Ali fought many people and defeated them like Jerry Quarry and Joe Frazier. Ali fought Leon Spinks in February 1978, but Spinks won and Muhammad lost his heavyweight title.

Ali fought a rematch in the New Orleans Louisiana Superdome against Spinks and he won his heavyweight title for the third time. His final match was against Trevor Berbick. Muhammad lost after the 10th round. Muhammad Ali retired after his last match. He now lives in Scottsdale, Arizona, with his fourth wife Yolanda Ali.

They sold their old house and bought a new one in Jefferson County, Kentucky for $1,875,000 in 2007. He also has a daughter named Laila that followed in his footsteps and became a boxer.