Though boxing is an individual sport every successful fighter has a support team behind him. Next to trainer Angelo Dundee, the key member of Ali’s team was Drew “Bundini” Brown. It has been said that while Dundee was the trainer who directed Ali’s body, Bundini Brown was the one who massaged his soul. Called Ali’s “spirit coach,” he was the court jester while Ali was the king. Bundini was Ali’s co-conspirator in many of his pre and post-fight antics as well as co-author on many of his rhyming recitations. Prior to becoming part of Ali’s inner circle, he worked in the corner of the great Sugar Ray Robinson. Bundini was introduced to Ali by Sugar Ray in New York in 1963 prior to Ali’s fight there against Doug Jones. He remained in Ali’s corner throughout the rest of Ali’s career with one notable exception. Shortly after Ali’s embracing of the Black Muslim faith, Bundini was exiled from Ali’s camp for his mixed marriage to a Russian-Jewish woman. Brown briefly joined Canadian George Chuvalo’s corner for his 1966 title bout against Ali. He was then re-instated to Ali’s entourage and was back in the corner for Ali’s defense against Zora Folley in 1967. He remained with Ali thereafter. Brown also did some work as an actor. He had bit parts in Shaft, Shaft’s Big Score, and The Color Purple as well as several other films. In addition, he portrayed himself in a few more. Ali was able to visit with Brown one last time just prior to his death. Brown passed away in 1987.