The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Breaking News

Sam Pollak

March 30, 2013

Remembering the glory of their times

(Continued)

But it wasn’t just Ali, and it wasn’t just boxing. Also striding the narrow world like a colossus were (to name just a few) Joe Namath and Johnny Unitas in football, Johnny Bench and Henry Aaron in baseball, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Walt “Clyde” Frazier in basketball.

Even horse racing demanded our attention back then, when in all three epic 1978 Triple Crown races, Affirmed just wouldn’t allow Alydar to beat him to the finish line.

Shuffled off this mortal coil are Frazier (who nearly drowned in a 25-meter swimming pool during a filming of the “Superstars” television show in 1973), Unitas, Liston, Cosell and Red Smith.

Ali was diagnosed with Parkinson’s syndrome in 1984, probably the result of the beatings he took in a ring career that lasted far too long. The disease has stilled the voice that thrilled and infuriated us.

But as the reaction of those University of Miami basketball players proves, while Ali’s body is frail, the athletic glory of his time outshines anything going on now.

Sam Pollak is the editor of The Daily Star. He can be reached at spollak@thedailystar.com or at (607) 432-1000, ext. 208. His columns can be found at www.thedailystar.com/sampollak.

Text Only
Sam Pollak

Additional Content
Join the Debate
Helium
Additional Resources
CNHI News Service
Poll

Is Israel justified to conduct its military campaign against the Hamas in Gaza?

Yes
No
Undecided/no opinion
     View Results