Who do you like? Mayweather or McGregor? A recent visit to two vastly different gyms in Oakland, California, revealed a range of stark emotions and hardened viewpoints, from Floyd is crafty/arrogant/unbeatable to Conor is out of his depth/brash/stands an underdog’s chance. By and large, the rooting for either fighter did not seem to turn on […]
More than a year in the making, the fight pits perhaps one of the greatest boxers of all time against one of the leading mixed-martial artists. Despite the hype, there is no title at stake, but perhaps something more important is — namely, bragging rights, not only between the two verbose combatants, but also between their rival fan bases: traditionalists favoring the “Sweet Science” and the growing legion of mixed-martial arts enthusiasts.
Although Mayweather-McGregor is boxing match between foes representing two different martial-arts styles, it immediately prompts comparisons to a bout that occurred 41 years ago, more than 5,500 miles from Las Vegas. That’s when arguably the world’s most famous man participated in a sporting spectacle that tarnished his legacy and almost cost him much more.
It happened June 26, 1976, when world’s heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali took on Japanese wrestler Antonio Inoki in a glorified exhibition that was billed then as “The Martial Arts Championship of the World…”
Leigh Montville outlines Muhammad Ali’s allegiance to the Nation of Islam in the new book “Sting Like a Bee: Muhammad Ali vs. the United States of America.” (Charles Harrity/Associated Press) By Sunni M. Khalid June 23 Sunni M. Khalid is a former foreign correspondent currently writing a book on modern Egypt. In “Sting Like a […]
My younger brother, Paul Lee, managed to unearth some of 37-year old CBS video of the White House press conference where I confronted former heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali. Close by Ali was Jeremiah Shabazz, a longtime “handler” from the infamous Nation of Islam (NOI) Mosque No. 12 in Philadelphia, as well as a member of […]