Sugar Ray Leonard is one of the most legendary sports icons of the 20th century. Fighting since the age of 14, this master of the sweet science of boxing had already racked up a staggering 155 fights before he even went pro, which ultimately culminated in three national Golden gloves titles, two AAU championships, the pan-American games crown, and a very memorable gold medal at the 1976 Olympic games. However, what Sugar Ray did as an amateur pales in comparison to his subsequent 20 year reign as one of the most dominant professional boxers. Sugar Ray’s feats in the ring captured the imagination of an entire generation as he defeated a litany of the finest boxers of the modern era in some of the most celebrated fights in the history of the sport. He's a six-time champion who was the first boxer ever to win a championship title in five different weight classes. By the time he retired, he was the first fighter to earn more than $100 million in prize money. And his accomplishments in the ring firmly established his position in the pantheon of all-time greats.
Not content to just retire, Sugar Ray has gone on to add a new dimension to his legacy as the unofficial ambassador for the sport of boxing and become a wildly active philanthropist. Sugar Ray and his wife, Bernadette, have created a foundation that amplifies the efforts in that fight against diabetes and obesity. And to top it all off, Sugar Ray has penned a raw and powerful autobiography titled "The Big Fight: My Life in and Out of the Ring.” In this episode, Sugar Ray dives deep into what it took for him to become a champion, and how in his darkest moments he learned to pivot.
What You'll Learn in this Episode: