Great ones lost: The magical moment when Prince and Muhammad Ali shared a stage

The great ones.
The great ones.
Image: AP Photo/Karin Cooper/Rogers & Cowan
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In 1997, boxing great Muhammad Ali and pop legend Prince met in Washington, DC on warm day in June to announce an upcoming benefit concert. It was one of those rare, heartwarming moments when two cultural icons shared their mutual admiration onstage.

Prince began: ”My friend called me a couple of days ago and asked me—he said, ‘Muhammad wants you to,’ and I said, ‘Yes.’ I didn’t even let him finish. He could have said, ‘[Muhammad wants you to] mow the lawn,’ and I would have been down with it.”

“Muhammad’s my hero,” Prince went on. “He has been since I was a child.”

Prince and Ali were promoting called ”The World Healing Honors,” according to the Los Angeles Times. At the press conference, Ali said, “I wish people would love everybody else the way that they love me… I hope I can encourage people to show the same love and respect for each other. If so, it would be a better world.”

When Prince died last month, Ali tweeted this photo of them, taken at that press conference: