Boxing is one of my passion sports this man will be missed. Floats like a butterfly and stung like a bee. Muhammad Ali, the silver-tongued boxer and civil rights champion who famously proclaimed himself "The Greatest" and then spent a lifetime living up to the billing, is dead. Ali died Friday at a Phoenix-area hospital, where he had spent the past few days being treated for respiratory complications, a family spokesman confirmed to NBC News. He was 74.