Floated Like a Butterfly, and Stung Like a Bee

Dave Meltzer By on March 30, 2017

On October 1st in his hometown of Louisville, Sports Illustrated (“SI”) honored one of the greatest and most inspirational athletes, fighters and people of all time; the man who “Floated like a butterfly, stung like a bee…and others couldn’t hit what their eyes couldn’t see.” Yes ladies and gentlemen of all ages—it’s the Great Muhammad Ali. SI’s Legacy Award celebrates former athletes whose dedication to sportsmanship, leadership, and philanthropy has directly or indirectly impacted the world over decades, and who better to rename it after then boxing legend Muhammad Ali. David Meltzer sports technology

With fellow boxing legends George Foreman and Larry Holmes by his side, the Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award was rightfully named and awarded after the 6’3” Louisville native – who sported an astonishing 56-5-0, 37 KO’s, throughout his 21 year career – on the 40th anniversary of his 1975 Championship ‘Thrilla in Manila’ fight with then former Heavyweight Champion Smokin’ Joe Frazier. This fight went on to become a landmark within not just the boxing world, but sports as a whole. David Meltzer sports technology

In furtherance of this award, Ali recently appeared for the 39th time on the cover of SI. The only other athlete to have more cover appearances is Michael Jordan. In response to being honored on the cover, Ali stated:  David Meltzer


“When I was featured on my first Sports Illustrated cover in 1963, it was a huge turning point in my career…documenting the great moments of my life, a relationship that has been integral to both my boxing career and now, the mission and legacy of the Muhammad Ali Center. It’s a relationship for which I will always be grateful…I am truly touched. I know there will be a great tradition of champions to receive this award in the future and I look forward to celebrating their spirit and accomplishments.”


Ali emphasizes the importance of athletes’ sportsmanship, not just their athleticism, being acknowledged by all generations across the international community for the greater good. As I have long been teaching: content, medium, and access play critical roles in positively being portrayed as a role model to all. sports technology David Meltzer

Muhammad Ali inspired many with his ability to box. However, his imagination or ideas (content) allowed him to dream bigger than most. Using boxing and his pride as a “talented black boxer” as his platform, he shared his perspective (access) to forever change the world of sports by becoming one of the pioneers on the road to desegregation and turning this perspective into a material reality (medium). sports technology

To this day, the name “Muhammad Ali” is internationally renowned, and now with the “Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award”, his legacy will live on forever. sports technology