Wow — We’re absolutely speechless after watching the beautiful tribute for Muhammad Ali at the 2016 ESPY’s. Chance the Rapper owned the stage after Kareem Abdul-Jabbar shared his memories of the late boxing legend.
The 2016 ESPY awards paid tribute to Muhammad Ali, who sadly passed away at the age of 74 on June 3, after a 32-year battle with Parkinson’s disease. The heartfelt tribute gave everyone a glimpse back at the legend’s iconic career, as Chance the Rapper, 23, performed a beautiful song dedicated to Muhammad’s memory. But first, the boxer’s good friend, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, 69, took the stage to honor his longtime pal. Get the details here.
Kareem, who has called Muhammad his mentor, played a major part in the tribute as he took the stage to share memories of his good friend. He shared his memory of meeting Muhammad while walking down the street one day. He said Muhammad “spoke fearlessly about injustice and he sacrificed tremendously for his principles.” With a proud smile Kareem continued, saying, “I hope his death spurs his successors to remember what truly made him the greatest.”
There was no acknowledgement whether Muhammad’s daughter, Laila Ali, 38, who originally paid tribute to her father upon his passing, and at the 2016 BET Awards, was there. But, we are sure she enjoyed the wonderful tribute.
Muhammad’s career is widely considered as the greatest heavyweight boxer of all time. He won his first championship at the age of 22 in 1964, then took the title again in 1974 and 1978. The boxing icon announced his retirement in July 1979, but didn’t wind up having his last fight until Dec. 11, 1981. Muhammad was married four times and has nine kids — his youngest daughter, Laila Ali, is a professional boxer herself.
HollywoodLifers, what did you think of Muhammad Ali’s tribute? Tell us what you think in the comments below!