Minister Louis, who became Louis Farrakhan, was right about me. I didn't belong. The music had stopped, Ali had come down off his toes, the entourage swarmed and squabbled. I went on to other things; Ali, too—the Rumble, the Thrilla, great flat-footed fights. But once in a movie house in Greenwich Village, since razed, after a boxing match on theater TV, I heard a familiar voice boom out, "Giiil Rogin, world's greatest spoatswritah!" The Champ.
In the ensuing years I told that story to other writers who covered him, and each one said Ali had said the same thing to him. Ali was right. There were a lot of us greatest. But there was only one of him, never be another. On his toes, dancing, hands held lightly at his sides, wicked smile, feeling nothing but the wind.