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Did Muhammad Ali say the following quote? Or was it created by Adidas?

Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they've been given than to explore the power they have to change it.

Impossible is not a fact. It's an opinion.

Impossible is not a declaration. It's a dare.

Impossible is potential.

Impossible is temporary.

Impossible is nothing.

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    This video claims to be an interview in which he said it. If you would like to watch it, please let me know if it is in there. – DJClayworth Aug 27 '12 at 18:52
  • It's "Adidas" by the way. One D. :) – Alenanno Aug 28 '12 at 9:21
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    I have tried hard to find when he actually said that. No luck. I checked the video, and he didn't say it. I have seen LOTS of videos which have those lines in the description. No where have I found him saying it. – Wertilq May 10 '13 at 12:30
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No it was most probably not made by Muhammad Ali

Searching the web, and I haven't been able to find anywhere he actually said it. Only things I find is the adidas ad. Looking at the words "Impossible is nothing" through books it only appeared after 2004. Google Ngrams search for Impossible is nothing

Looking at wikiquotes and the impossible quote is not listed there. When looking at the web, it's probably the most famous quote "by him", so it's very surprising it's not listed by wikiquotes, if he actually said it.

"Impossible is Nothing" was the previous mainstream marketing slogan for Adidas. This campaign was developed by 180/TBWA based in Amsterdam but also with significant work being done by TBWA/Chiat/Day in San Francisco – particularly for its basketball campaign "Believe in Five".TBWA\Chiat\Day commissioned Zane Peach[41] to produce images for 2007 international ad campaign.

Wikipedia link about adidas marketing

QuoteVadis: Impossible is nothing gives the credit for the quote to "— Anonymous for Adidas advertisement campaign."

The quote is probably made by Adidas and not Muhammad Ali, but I don't have conclusive proof.

The quote might have been made by John C. Maxwell in his book THE DIFFERENCE MAKER; page 53(Credits to Urthone), I haven't found the full quote in use before that time.

“Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.” Page: 53

  • The last citation from John C Maxwell is actually referencing the addias slogan in the book. – darethas Feb 10 '16 at 15:10
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In Maxwell's book, he cites that Adidas ad as the source. So far it appears the most likely answer is that it was created by Adidas' marketing people and they used Ali in the ads.

Some of the information contained in this post requires additional references. Please edit to add citations to reliable sources that support the assertions made here. Unsourced material may be disputed or deleted.

  • Presumably you are talking about the book that you saw was cited by @Wertliq's existing answer (via an answer that has since been deleted.) You should cite it more definitively, in case Wertliq removes his answer. I am interested in how you think this answer improves on the existing one. – Oddthinking Jun 10 '14 at 3:26

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