Like Ali was the man in Manilla
A reference to legendary professional boxer Muhammad Ali (who is very well known as the “People’s Champ”, a term that was mentioned in the intro and is the name of the song) and the final notorious match called Thrilla in Manila (October 1, 1975) between him and Joe Frazier for the Heavyweight Boxing Championship of the World. Ali won the match.
On a side note, boxing is R.A.’s favorite sport, and he has had some of his own discussions with some of today’s greats.
Also, the word “man” is in Manilla. And if you break it down, you can see “A Ill Man”. Odds are that this is not an intended meaning, but nonetheless, it is interesting.
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