Boxing legend Muhammad Ali was a champion in and out of the ring. He lived up to the title he gave to himself — “The Greatest” — by not only emerging victorious with one of boxing’s most impressive records, but for standing up for social justice as an activist and capturing the popular imagination as a poet who packed a punch with his rhymes.
To remember the champion, who passed away a year ago on June 3, we’re revisiting some of his best quotes:
"Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee. His hands can't hit what his eyes can't see. Now you see me, now you don't. George thinks he will, but I know he won't."
"The best way to make your dreams come true is to wake up."
"I'm young; I'm handsome; I'm fast. I can't possibly be beat."
"I know where I’m going and I know the truth, and I don’t have to be what you want me to be. I’m free to be what I want."
"Don’t count the days; make the days count."
“It's hard to be humble when you're as great as I am."
“It’s not bragging if you can back it up.”
"Champions aren’t made in gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them—a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have last-minute stamina, they have to be a little faster, they have to have the skill and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill."
"I should be a postage stamp. That's the only way I'll ever get licked."
"I shook up the world. Me! Whee!"
“I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.'”
"I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was."