In the wake of comments by Muhammad Ali's brother to a London newspaper that Ali is in extremely poor health and can barely speak, two of Ali's daughters assured TODAY viewers that the Greatest of All Time has not taken any turn for the worse.
"He's doing really good, actually,'' daughter Hana Ali told Matt Lauer on TODAY Thursday. "We call him in the mornings, and he still enjoys being Muhammad Ali. He's not in any pain. He has a regular routine he does."
Ali's brother Rahman, 71, told The Mirror of London at a screening of the new Ali documentary "I Am Ali" last week that the boxing immortal, who has suffered from Parkinson's disease since 1984, is sick and "doesn't speak too well."
"Unfortunately certain family members that don't understand Parkinson's might misspeak because they don't see him as often, so when they do see him, they think he's doing worse than what he is. But he is fine,'' May May Ali told Lauer. "People, don't be worried."
Though Parkinson's has affected Ali's legendary booming voice, his daughters say he still can be heard.
"For me, it hasn't been frustrating,'' Hana said. "My father still communicates. We're lucky to be able to talk to him and see him more often than most people, so we still get it. It's just a softer voice."
Directed by Clare Lewins, the new documentary takes an intimate look at Ali's life through his personal audio recordings and clips of him speaking with his nine children.
"It shows him as a human being, I think — a father, a friend,'' Hana said "It gets into the essence of who he is, the spirit of who he is. For us, he was larger than life at home, too. He'd chase us around the house in Halloween masks when it wasn't Halloween. He was always playing jokes, doing magic tricks."
Ali's daughters are hoping viewers of the documentary will come away with more than just a glimpse of Ali's private life with his family.
"I want them to take away, 'Be free to be who you are' ... there's still a lot of discrimination and disparities in this country,'' May May said. "Be who you are and stand up. That to me would be the most powerful message."