“Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.” Everyone knows the catch
One of boxing’s most intriguing characters, Bundini was literally and figuratively a constant in Muhammad Ali’s corner, working forty-four of his sixty-one professional bouts—including all of his most significant ones. As his trainer, Bundini woke him up every morning and shadowed him in the gym every day. Over time, he became one of Ali’s closest confidants. He also served as Ali’s “hype man,” firing up the legendary boxer during every fight with interjections and exclamations that were as fierce as they were poetic.
While his impact on “The Greatest” cannot be overstated, Muhammad Ali was not the only fighter shaped by Drew “Bundini” Brown. Before ever meeting Ali, Bundini was a member of Sugar Ray Robinson’s entourage for seven consecutive years. As a primary figure in the lives of two of the biggest icons in the history of the boxing, Bundini’s impact on the sport is undeniable.
Todd D. Snyder is the son of a West Virginia boxing trainer and the author of 12 Rounds in Lo’s Gym: Boxing and Manhood in Appalachia. He holds a B.A. and an M.A. in English from Marshall University, and a Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Composition from Ohio University. An Associate Professor of Rhetoric and Writing at Siena College, he lives in Albany, New York.
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