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Kevin Mitchell Quotes - How to Think Like Muhammad Ali

"And therein, surely, lies the clue to our fascination with Muhammad Ali. He is our champion of being human. We kind of get him: all the good and bad, the hilarious and the tragic."

"Yet Ali embraces his Parkinson’s disease as if he were holding another fighter in a clinch, kidding him to cease hisattack by sheer force of charm." 

"When you reach your goal, you have to be proud and dignified. You represent something and you have a responsibility to live up to it."

"In that single powerful declaration, Ali set the tone for the rest of his life – ‘I don’t have to be what you want me to be. I’m free to be what I want.’"

"Had Muhammad Ali been not much good at boxing, of course, we would never have heard about him. It was his fighting talent that propelled him into the eye of a different hurricane, one of words and principals rather than blood and bruises."

"As gentle and caring as he could be, Ali survived on his ability to bring animosity to nearly everything he did when he needed to."

"That’s it, yes. It’s focus, focus, focus and then you hit the little button right there."

"Ali needs to do nothing but be alive to engender love and admiration."

"Ali, however, had an inner strength that allowed him to rise above the crowd."

"Ali’s survival is not a badge he wears, it is just his lot in life."

"He has spread such love and affection, and opened so many eyes to various injustices, that we have to forgive him his sins – as if it is in our gift to do so in the first place. Certainly he would do so in reverse."

"What matters is that we see his achievements in a bigger context, his contribution to his race: the human race. We cannot walk in his shoes but we have witnessed him on that road to freedom."

"It doesn’t matter if he was better than Louis – or Dempsey or Marciano or any of the other heavyweights mentioned in the same breath; he was great in his own right and on many, many nights."

"He inspired so many fighters that followed. Ask boxers of a certain generation – say, anyone born in the 1960s – and they will invariably mention Ali as their favourite fighter, the one boxer who provided them with the belief and strength to give it a go. 

"Yet, for all that the image of Ali lighting that flame will never die, my recollections go further back, to the time when he was full of life, every muscle and bone moving in uncanny syncopation with his quicksilver brain."

"He was so wonderfully coordinated a mover, so smooth and powerful, yet light-footed and balletic, that everything around him moved to his rhythm."

"He embodied the other quality needed to box: courage. Few fighters had a better chin. Very few were as willing to get up once down. He lit a fire under the world in the twenty-one years he fought as a professional, and the embers are still glowing. Ali the boxer was also Ali the human being, loud in the beginning, humbled at the finish."

Quotes of wisdom by Kevin Mitchell
How to Think Like Muhammad Ali - The Paradox of Greatness and the Power of Mental Toughness

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