Shortly after the release of Ali, I was contacted about contributing to this massive coffee table book (75 pounds, 27" x 27") by publisher Benedikt Taschen, a lovely German fellow.
Believe it or not, I had to be talked into this by my then girlfriend. Benedikt just wasn't paying very much. He was assuming a lot of financial risk and wanted to minimize his downside. I understand that now. But I was so much Hollywood bullshit about getting paid a lot to write, I wasn't thinking clearly.
So glad my girlfriend prevailed, because it made me part of history, part of the champ's history. And since he was my idol, that's where I needed to be. I wrote four essays for G.O.A.T.. They are included below. My favorite was "Rumble In An Urban Jungle." I got to read this to Ali himself at his 70th birthday in Louisville, one of the greatest honors of my life.