Others, Ali suspects, still won't respect his upset victory over Miguel Cotto on Saturday night at Madison Square Garden.
He went on to win six world titles - most recently a vacant 154-pound belt on August 26 against Yoshihiro Kamegai that Cotto was defending for the first time on Saturday - in four weight divisions: junior welterweight, welterweight, junior middleweight and middleweight.
Cotto had come to his house, Madison Square Garden, where he headlined for the 10th time, to say goodbye to fans who have supported him throughout his career.
Is this the last we've seen on Cotto in the ring?
Cotto had won four titles in four different weight categories, but struggled against the quick hands of 29-year-old Ali. And he had some fans chanting his name as well.
Numerous 12,371 fans booed the decision, and again when Ali spoke in the ring.
But there would be no movie-like ending for Cotto. Had he dominated Ali, one could imagine him perhaps getting the itch to take on a Canelo Alvarez or Gennady Golovkin, which was the initial plan.More news: Woman Arrested After Testing Toxic Substance on Senior Home Residents
"Feeling good with the performance", Cotto said. "Something happened to my left bicep, seventh round". Sadam won the fight. It is my last fight.
In the second round, Ali appeared to stagger Cotto momentarily with an overhand right. Ali repeated the feat in the third round also this time from a left hand, rocking Cotto once again as Ali's confidence grew. Ali was more then content to allow Cotto come to him and utilise his speed and accuracy against the industrial Cotto. Cotto picked up the pace for the final round of his career, but Ali won that round unanimously, too.
Ali added: "Good things happen to good people". "I have been training since I was 8 years old, and I am glad I got this win at MSG, in my hometown".
Holder of six belts in four weight classes in his distinguished career-and the only boxer from the tradition-rich Caribbean island to own four such titles-he retires with a reputation as one of the classiest and fearless fighters of his era. Miguel made the MSG his second home with many of his world title fights at the venue. I had the opportunity to provide the best for my family because of the sport, was Cottos farewell acknowledgement at The Mecca of Boxing.
Angel Acosta plowed through his first 16 pro fights, winning by KO or TKO against everyone who dared get in the ring with him. This was Acosta's first start since losing a 12-round decision in Japan to defending WBO 108-pound champion Kosei Tanaka. The popular fighter from Caguas, Puerto Rico, has called New York City his second home and The Mecca of Boxing as his primary boxing residence.
The WBO junior flyweight title was at stake again. A right to the ear. Alejo went down. And it was over at 1:33 of the 10th round. "But I didn't want to get over myself and get caught with a shot".
Vargas stayed that way, surviving cuts above both eyes from head butts to win a 12-round unanimous decision. The Mexican champion improved to 31-0, while Negrete, of Colombia, lost for the first time in 18 bouts.