A huge number of heartwarming and inspiring stories have been told in the days following Muhammad Ali’s death, but one that particularly caught our eye was found by the guys at Mass Appeal who dug up a story from the 1987 book The Making of Enter the Dragon. In it, Enter the Dragon director Robert Clause tells a story where Bruce Lee settled a debate amongst the crew about who would win in a fight between Lee and Ali.
Here’s the story:
Another time Yeung, aka [Bolo] went to see Bruce at Golden Harvest Studios. Bruce was screening a Cassius Clay [Muhammad Ali] documentary. Ali was world heavyweight champion at the time and Bruce saw him as the greatest fighter of them all. The documentary showed Ali in several of his fights. Bruce set up a wide full-length mirror to reflect Ali’s image from the screen. Bruce was looking into the mirror, moving along with Ali.
Bruce’s right hand followed Ali’s right hand, Ali’s left foot followed Bruce’s left foot. Bruce was fighting in Ali’s shoes. “Everybody says I must fight Ali some day.” Bruce said, “I’m studying every move he makes. I’m getting to know how he thinks and moves.” Bruce knew he could never win a fight against Ali. “Look at my hand,” he said. “That’s a little Chinese hand. He’d kill me.”
Lee was 170cm and weight 65kg, while Ali was 190cm and weighed in at over 90kg, and is widely considered the greatest boxer of all time – so we think Lee might’ve be onto something there!