Ali Timeline-The Orlando Times

The Orlando Times

Ali Timeline

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Timeline of the Champ


January 17, Muhammad Ali was born in Louisville, Kentucky.
His name at birth was Cassius Clay.


His bicycle was stolen and he told the policemen, Joe Martin, that he wanted to "whup" whoever had stolen his bike. Martin trained young boxers and started to train Clay.


He wins the novice Golden Gloves Championship as a light heavyweight.


He wins the the AAU light heavyweight title at the Golden Gloves Tournament of Champions.


In September he won the light heavyweight gold medal at the Rome Olympics, his first major success in athletics.

In October he wins his first professional bout with Tunney Hunsaker.


In October he wins his first foreign professional bout with Henry Cooper in London before 55,000 fans.


February 25, he knocked out Sonny Liston.
This defeat allowed him to become the heavyweight champion.

February 26, he joined the Nation of Islam.

March 6, at the age of 22, he changed his name from
Cassius Clay to Muhammad Ali.


Ali is drafted and he files for conscientious objector status as a Muslim minister. 



In April, the government denies his filing for conscientious objector status and he was drafted into the Army. He attends the induction ceremony, but he refused to step forward.

In June, Ali is found guilty of refusing induction into the Army. His passport is revoked.

The boxing association takes back his boxing titles and bans him from boxing for three years.

He married his second wife, Belinda Boyd.
They would go on to have four children together.


On October 26, Ali returns to fighting in Atlanta and wins over Jerry Quarry.


In March, in a famous match called "The Fight of the Century," Joe Frazier knocked Ali down, but Ali got up. However, after 15 brutal rounds, it was still ruled that Frazier won.

In June, the Supreme Court reverses its 1967 conviction and ruled that he was not guilty of evading the military, since he should not have been drafted in the first place due to his religious beliefs.


January 28, he won over Joe Frazier.

October 30, he defeated George Foreman and reclaimed the title of Heavyweight Champion of the World. This fight was a very famous fight event known as the "Rumble in the Jungle" since the fight was at a stadium in Zaire.


October 1st, Ali beats Joe Frazier in Manila.


September 28, Ali beats Ken Norton in Yankee Stadium in New York.


February 15, Ali lost the heavyweight title to Leon Spinks in a split decision.

September 15, Ali wins the heavyweight title back from Leon Spinks after a battle at the Superdome in New Orleans.



Ali came back and fought with Harry Holmes. Ali lost the fight.


December 12, once again, Ali came back and fought with Trevor Berbick. Ali lost the fight.

December 13, at the age of 39, Ali announces his retirement from boxing.


He was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease.


In December, Ali secures the release of 14 American hostages held in Iraq during the run-up to the Gulf War. Ali had gone to Iraq at the invitation of Saddam Hussein, who met with the former champion for 50 minutes


Ali was invited to light the Olympic flame in Atlanta, Georgia. He accepted.


He received the Arthur Ashe Courage Award.

His picture is placed on the front of the Wheaties cereal box.

He is named Sportsman of the Century by Sports Illustrated.


Secretary-General Kofi Annan names Ali a United Nations Messenger of Peace.


He is awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest U.S. civilian honor.


28 July: is among a number of dignitaries and other special guests to escort the Olympic flag during the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in Stratford, east London.



April: makes last known public appearance at Parkinsonís fundraiser Muhammad Ali's Celebrity Fight Night XXII.

                                June 3 dies in Phoenix, Arizona, at the age of 74