Muhammad Ali Story

by Geraldo Rivera | Jun 03, 2016

As we pray for his speedy recovery and send love and best wishes to his family, here is my favorite Muhammad Ali story:

In 1992 after making bail, I got out of jail in Janesville Wisconsin charged with assault for a fistfight with a Neo-Nazi who was also charged.

Upon release I drove to Rockford Illinois to catch a short connecting flight to Chicago.

As fate would have it, Muhammad Ali was also on the flight.

After re-arranging some other passengers, I was seated next to the Champ who I have known since his comeback in the early 1970s. We had even "sparred" for a profile of him I did for ABC.

By flight time the video of my brawl with the Nazi at the "Hate Summit" in Janesville had aired on every newscast.

"I got a beef with you," the Champ told me as the plane took off.

"What is it Champ?" I replied, horrified that I did anything to offend the 20th Century's greatest athlete and one of the grandest souls ever.

"How many times have I told you? You never lead with your right."

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