INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Indianapolis Colts owner says his memorabilia collection purchased the dress that world heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali wore before his 1965 knockout rematch with Sonny Liston.
The Jim Irsay Collection bought the going out dress used by ‘The Greatest’ on Saturday for $438,000, according to New Jersey-based Goldin Auctions.
“When Ali wore the white terry cloth robe – which features ‘MUHAMMAD ALI’ embroidered in bright red – that day was the first time he appeared in the ring wearing the name that would soon be known in the world. world,” a press release said. released Sunday night by Colts Communications.
Cassius Clay Jr. at age 22 defeated Liston for the first time on February 25, 1964, to become the world heavyweight boxing champion. After gaining the title, he joined the Nation of Islam and changed his name to “Cassius X” and later Muhammad Ali.
He wore the robe on May 25, 1965 in Lewiston, Maine where Ali in the rematch with Liston threw a “phantom punch” and was declared the winner by knockout. “Many boxing fans and news outlets have refused to acknowledge his new name,” the Colts Communication statement said.
Ali held the world heavyweight boxing title over three periods: February 1964 to April 1967; October 1974 to February 1978; and from September to October 1979.
Two years after revealing he had Parkinson’s disease, Ali lit the torch for the opening ceremonies of the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. By age 18, Clay had won a gold medal in the light heavyweight division at the 1960 Summer Olympics and turned pro later that year.
Sports Illustrated and the BBC in 1999 named him the greatest athlete of the 20th century.
The Louisville, Kentucky native died in June 2016 at the age of 74.
“Muhammad Ali was not only one of the greatest athletes the world has ever known, but he was also a trailblazer for so many people across our country and the world. Whatever is used in the ring by “The Greatest” is special. But this dress represents a pivotal moment in his career when he was criticized for standing up for religious freedom and against racism and bigotry. I can’t think of anything more important at the time. or today, and I’m proud to add this piece to my collection.
Jim Irsay, owner and general manager of the Indianapolis Colts