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  • >> Stephen: WE HAD ONE BIT OF SAD NEWS OVER THE BREAK AND NAT

  • IS THE WORLD LOST A TRUE ICON, MUHAMMAD ALI.

  • HE WAS ONE OVER THE MOST INFLUENTIAL PEOPLE OF THE 20TH

  • CENTURY AND ONE OF THE MOST DOMINANT ATHLETES IN THE HISTORY

  • OF SPORTS.

  • DURING THE 1960 OLYMPICS, AT AGE 18, HE WON THE GOLD OLYMPICS

  • MEDAL FOR THE U.S. BOXING TEAM, AND IN 1964, HE BECAME

  • HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION OF THE WORLD, UPSETTING SONNY LISTON,

  • THE 7-TO-1 FAVORITE.

  • WOW.

  • 7-TO-1 ODDS.

  • HE WAS TRULY THE BERNIE SANDERS OF HIS TIME.

  • LAUGH A LAUGH (APPLAUSE)

  • BACK THEN, AFRICAN AMERICANS WERE EXPECTED TO BE DEFERENTIAL

  • IN PUBLIC, BUT HERE'S YOUNG CASSIUS CLAY RIGHT AFTER THAT

  • FIGHT.

  • >> I AM THE GREATEST.

  • I DON'T HAVE A MARK ON MY FACE AND I UPSET SONNY LISTON AND I

  • JUST TURNED 22 YEARS OLD.

  • I MUST BE THE GREATEST.

  • I TOLD THE WORLD.

  • I SHOOK UP THE WORLD, I SHOOK UP THE WORLD, I SHOOK UP THE WORLD!

  • >> STEPHEN: THAT TYPE OF OUTRAGEOUS BRAGGING PAVED THE

  • WAY FOR SO MANY OTHER PEOPLE OF COLOR.

  • (LAUGHTER) (APPLAUSE)

  • ALI PAID A HIGH PRICE FOR HIS BELIEFS.

  • HE WAS STRIPPED OF HIS TITLE AND BANNED FROM BOXING AFTER HE

  • REFUSED TO FIGHT IN VIETNAM.

  • HIS BAN WAS EVENTUALLY OVERTURNED BY THE SUPREME COURT,

  • AND ALI WENT ON TO WIN THE WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE THREE

  • TIMES AND FOUGHT IN SOME OF THE MOST FAMOUS BOXING MATCHES OF

  • ALL TIME: THE "RUMBLE IN THE JUNGLE," THE "THRILLA IN

  • MANILA," AND THE LESS SUCCESSFUL "ADEQUATE IN CONNECTICUT."

  • (LAUGHTER) AND HE DIDN'T JUST CHANGE

  • BOXING, HE CHANGED TRASH TALK.

  • HE TURNED IT INTO PERFORMANCE ART.

  • "I FLOAT LIKE A BUTTERFLY, STING LIKE A BEE."

  • JUST LAST WEEK, I MURDERED A ROCK, INJURED A STONE,

  • HOSPITALIZED A BRICK.

  • I'M SO MEAN, I MAKE MEDICINE SICK."

  • "JOE FRAZIER IS SO UGLY THAT WHEN HE CRIES, THE TEARS TURN

  • AROUND AND GO DOWN THE BACK OF HIS HEAD."

  • THAT'S COLD.

  • THE CHAMP APPEARED ON LATE NIGHT SHOWS, SITCOMS, AND COMMERCIALS

  • AND EVEN IN THE COMIC BOOK "SUPERMAN VS MUHAMMAD ALI!" --

  • ALTHOUGH THE MOVIE VERSION FLOPPED WHEN BEN AFFLECK WAS

  • CAST AS MUHAMMAD ALI.

  • (LAUGHTER) NOTHING SUMS UP THE DEFIANT,

  • CULTURE-CHANGING SPIRIT OF ALI LIKE WHEN HE SAID:

  • "I AM AMERICA.

  • I AM THE PART YOU WON'T RECOGNIZE.

  • BUT GET USED TO ME.

  • BLACK, CONFIDENT, COCKY; MY NAME, NOT YOURS; MY RELIGION,

  • NOT YOURS; MY GOALS, MY OWN; GET USED TO ME."

  • (CHEERS AND APPLAUSE) HE HELPED CREATE THE AMERICA WE

  • LIVE IN TODAY-- AND I MEAN THE GOOD THINGS ABOUT AMERICA, NOT

  • THAT WHOPPERITO THING.

  • (LAUGHTER) JOINING ME NOW TO DISCUSS

  • MUHAMMAD ALI'S LEGACY IS A HALL OF FAME BASKETBALL PLAYER AND

  • SIX-TIME NBA CHAMPION WHO WAS A FRIEND OF ALI'S AS WELL AS A

  • FELLOW CONVERT TO ISLAM.

  • PLEASE WELCOME, KAREEM ABDUL JABBAR!

  • (CHEERS AND APPLAUSE) GOOD TO SEE YOU AGAIN.

  • THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR BEING HERE.

  • >> NICE TO BE WITH YOU.

  • >> Stephen: I'M SORRY ABOUT THE LOSS OF YOUR FRIEND MUHAMMAD

  • ALI.

  • HOW DID THE TWO OF YOU GET TO KNOW EACH OTHER?

  • >> I RAN INTO ALI AT A PARTY HERE.

  • I WAS A FRESHMAN AT U.C.L.A., AND I WENT TO A PARTY, AND ALI

  • WAS THERE.

  • THERE WAS A LITTLE BAND THERE, AND I WAS FOOLING AROUND WITH

  • THE DRUMS, AND JUST GOOFING AROUND, AND MUHAMMAD ALI AND HIS

  • PHOTOGRAPHER CAME UP.

  • SO HE PICKED UP THE GUITAR AND STARTED ACTING LIKE HE WAS

  • PLAYING THE GUITAR.

  • I ACTED LIKE I WAS PLAYING THE DRUMS.

  • >> Stephen: ALI WAS ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT BOTH CULTURAL AND

  • POLITICAL FIGURES OF THE 20t 20th CENTURY.

  • WHY WAS HE IMPORTANT TO YOU?

  • >> MY DAD BOXED, SO, YOU KNOW, BOXING WAS A BIG SPORT FOR ME

  • WHEN I WAS A KID AND KNEW THAT THE HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMP WAS

  • SOMEBODY TO BE RESPECTED.

  • HE HANDLED ALL THAT.

  • ON TOP OF THAT, HE HANDLED A WHOLE LOT OF ISSUES THAT HAD

  • NOTHING TO DO WITH SPORTS, YOU KNOW, CIVIL RIGHTS AND HUMAN

  • RIGHTS ISSUES.

  • >> Stephen: AS A CHAMPION YOURSELF, TALK TO ME A LITTLE

  • BIT LIKE WHAT HIS GAME WAS LIKE BEFORE THE CONTEST STARTED, THE

  • WAY HE PSYCHED OUT HIS OPPONENTS AND USED THE MENTAL GAME AGAINST

  • THE PEOPLE HE WAS ABOUT TO BOX.

  • >> ONE OF THE THINGS THAT REALLY GOT TO ME AND MADE ME TOTALLY

  • THINK HE WAS INCREDIBLE WAS THE WAY, LIKE, WHEN HE WENT TO SONNY

  • LISTON'S CAMP WHERE HE WAS TRAINING AND STARTED HECKLING

  • HIM WHILE HE WAS TRYING TO TRAIN.

  • SONNY LISTON CAME OUT AND TRIED TO CATCH HIM AND START A FISCAL

  • CONFLICT RIGHT THERE.

  • ALI TOTALLY GOT INTO THE GUY'S HEAD, AND HE DIDN'T EVEN REALIZE

  • IT IN HIS REACTION.

  • HE SAID, I'LL KILL HIM!

  • YOU KNOW, AND, OF COURSE, ALI WENT OUT THERE AND EMBARRASSED

  • SONNY LISTON.

  • THAT WAS THE TYPE OF GUY HE WAS.

  • YOU HAD TO LOVE HIM FOR THAT.

  • >> Stephen: YOUR DAD WAS A BOXER.

  • YOU TRAINED WITH BRUCE LEE.

  • >> YEAH.

  • >> Stephen: DO YOU THINK YOU COULD HAVE GONE FIVE ROUNDS WITH

  • MUHAMMAD ALI?

  • YOU'VE GOT THE REACH, TALE OF THE TAPE IS ON YOUR SIDE.

  • >> WOULDN'T WANT TO DO THAT.

  • HE WAS MY BROTHER AND MY FRIEND.

  • WILT WANTED TO BOX HIM.

  • >> Stephen: WILT CHAMBERLAIN DID?

  • >> YEAH, HE WAS DREAMING.

  • HE WOKE UP AND WAS DREAMING HE WAS GOING TO BOX MUHAMMAD ALI.

  • (LAUGHTER) BUT THAT'S WHERE EGO WILL GET

  • YA.

  • >> Stephen: IS THERE ANYTHING PEOPLE DON'T KNOW ABOUT YOUR

  • FRIEND THAT THEY SHOULD BE THINKING ABOUT RIGHT NOW?

  • >> HIS UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT INTEGRITY WAS ALL ABOUT WAS

  • REMARKABLE AND IT'S AN EXAMPLE FOR US TO REPEAT FOR OUR KIDS

  • AND GRANDKIDS BECAUSE IT WAS THE REAL DEAL.

  • >> Stephen: KAREEM ABDUL JABBAR, EVERYBODY.

>> Stephen: WE HAD ONE BIT OF SAD NEWS OVER THE BREAK AND NAT

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Stephen Pays Tribute To Muhammad Ali, With Help From Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

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    VoiceTube posted on 2016/07/08
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