Muhammad Ali was an inspiration to many people, and the current WBC heavyweight champion, Tuscaloosa's own Deontay Wilder, was also touched by the life and career of the greatest boxer to ever live.

Wilder joined Ryan Fowler inside "The Game" on Thursday to look ahead to his next fight against Chris Arreola on July 16, but also to reflect back on the life of Ali and how he impacted Wilder's life, both in and out of the ring.

"It was a sad, sad moment for me. When I first found out it was like, I really felt like one of my siblings died, or my grandfather or something had passed away. He definitely was a big motivation for me, he was a mentor, he definitely was an icon."

Since Ali retired in in 1981, there hasn't been an American heavyweight champion who has been able to enchant fans all over the world, but Wilder has taken the responsibility to bring boxing back to the mainstream.

"He showed us how to promote fights, how to put our hype to a fight and live up to the hype of that fight... And on the outside, how he was a small man with a big voice to captivate the world. So it was amazing, the things he did, inside and outside the ring."

You can listen to Wilder reflecting on Ali's life and the impact he had on him in the video below, and you can also hear the entire interview in our podcast center.