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Boxing Champion Muhammad Ali Dies at Age 74 in Phoenix, Arizona

Sat June 04 2016 5:01 am  http://www.arlingtoncardinal.com/?p=78764
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Muhammad Ali, the 74-year-old boxing champ, was fighting a respiratory infection with his family by his side when he died. CBSN’s Scott Pelley has a look back at his life.

Boxing legend Muhammad Ali has died in a Phoenix, Arizona hospital at the age of 74. The legendary fighter, thought by many to be the greatest heavyweight champion of all time, had battled multiple illnesses including Parkinson’s Disease.

He was born Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr. on January 17, 1942 in Louisville, Kentucky. In 1964 Ali joined the Nation of Islam and changed his name. He converted to Sunni Islam in 1975, and 30 years later began adhering to Sufism.

In 1967, three years after winning the heavyweight title, Ali refused to be conscripted into the U.S. military, citing his religious beliefs and opposition to American involvement in the Vietnam War. Ali was eventually arrested and found guilty on draft evasion charges. He was then stripped of his boxing title. He did not fight again for nearly four years, which occurred during a time of peak performance in an athlete’s career. Ali’s judicial appeals rose to the U.S. Supreme Court until 1971 when his conviction was overturned. Ali’s actions as a conscientious objector to the war made him a countercultural icon.

Ali remains the only three-time lineal world heavyweight champion — winning the title in 1964, 1974, and 1978. Between February 25, 1964 and September 19, 1964 Muhammad Ali reigned as the undisputed heavyweight boxing champion.

Ali’s signature punches included a left jab, among five other jabs, and an overhand right. One significant jab was called the ‘snake lick’, which Ali described as similar to cobra strike that comes almost from the floor from a low angle. Ali also had a rapid-fire jab of three to five jabs in rapid succession designed to disorient an opponent by hitting the opponent’s eyes to obstruct vision and interfere with detection of the right-hand punch coming next.


Muhammad Ali, the 74-year-old three-time heavyweight champ, was fighting a respiratory infection with his family by his side when he died.




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