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Home » Sugar Ray Leonard: Without boxing I’d possibly be dead

Sugar Ray Leonard: Without boxing I’d possibly be dead

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Sugar Ray Leonard enjoyed one of boxing’s most remarkable careers ever. However, the former champion believes he’d be dead without the sport.

Speaking to the World Boxing Council for an exclusive interview, Sugar Ray admitted to Pepe Sulaiman.

“I wouldn’t have been here and possibly wouldn’t be alive? Boxing allowed my father to live to ninety-five,” said Leonard.

“But when I returned from the Olympics, he was in a coma and needed medical attention. I spoke to my mentor, Janks Morton, who advised me to turn pro.

“Boxing was a dream come true, and boxing is my life. Boxing is a friend.”

Leonard added on retirement and how he misses training: “It’s music to my ears. It’s a great feeling.

“You see the transformation in mind, body, and spirit. The anticipation of it. It’s a sign of life. These are the things I miss.

“I don’t fight anymore, but I’ll never stop hitting the bag and moving around. When I play tennis, I zoom in and run like a twenty-year-old, although I feel it later!”


Walking away with a Hall of Fame career, Leonard is revered to this day by boxing fans worldwide.

“When you win something, you’ve taken something away. Boxing is life, business, companionship, and friends. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

“Boxing is life, and fighting is life. I got into a zone. People tell you, you can’t do it because they can’t do it.

“Boxing is about being tough but also being smart. You have to listen to your body.

“Life is what you make of it. My way is to be nice and not to take things for granted. Respect others. My father told me, don’t forget where you come from.

“My father still plays into my head and my heart, saying hello sometimes, giving me encouragement and confidence.

“The last two years have been scary. I have some friends who’ve taken big blows because of this Pandemic. But they didn’t give up!

“It’s an incredible position to be in,” he concluded:

Listen to the full interview on the World Boxing Counicl YouTube.

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