The Miami Marlins informed fans at Friday night’s game that Muhammad Ali had died, despite no evidence at the time Ali had actually died.
It was officially announced early Saturday morning ET that the boxer had died at the age of 74.
“It was not an error,” Marlins president David Samson said according to the Miami Herald. “We were informed by someone close to the family that he had passed away. We wanted to get a tribute out as soon as we possibly could.”
Ali had been hospitalized since Thursday with a respiratory condition. NBC Nightly News reported earlier Friday that he was in “grave condition” but there were no media reports Ali had died at the time the Marlins made the announcement.
After the conclusion of the game, the team displayed a graphic on the scoreboard with a photo of Ali, his birth date and a date of death.
Fans stood to applaud after the announcement was made.
Ali is a three-time heavyweight champion. He retired from boxing in 1981 and was diagnosed with Parkinson’s three years later.