4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
The Human side of a legendary fighter!!!!,
This review is from: The Big Fight: My Story (Paperback)
This is an excellent book. Ray Leonard's honesty about his past and experiences is what makes this book so special. I am a boxing fan and I was drawn in from page one. Even people who are not boxing fans should read this book. Simply because it really highlights the mental side of the game. It is these mental facilities that made Leonard into one of the greats, yes he had to train hard and out work everybody in the gym, but what set him apart was his mental abilities. For psyching out his opponents, to being charming and articulate enough to win the hearts and imagination of the world.
The first chapter starts out with Leonard looking in the mirror figuring out who Marvin haggler will be fighting. The superstar boxing champion Sugar Ray or Ray the fighter and man along for the ride. Then a summary of the fight from Leonards first hand perspective. This alone is worth the price of the book. The book then goes back in chronological order. Starting with Ray's father. This part of the book reminded me of how racist America (actually the whole world) was at that time period. By Ray's time the seeds of equality had been set but they roots of racism were still very deep. Ray speaks openly about the time he was reminded of this or people tried to "put him back in his place".
Like I said earlier Ray's honesty is what makes this book special. He talks openly about his flaws, the temptations, and abuse he endured and or succumbs to. he say he knew what he was doing but at the time coming from nothing to becoming one of the most famous and biggest box office draw of his era. Again it is the mental side of dealing with things that where more a problem then the physical side. Not to say he had it easy physically either; damaged nerves in his hands among other injuries and the wear and tear of training and fighting at that level. I can't say it any better the Leonard; "people see our bulging muscles, and think we are superman, not feeling the fatigue and insectaries everyone else does".
Leonard does not blame anyone for his mistakes he take full responsibility for them. He gives all the credit due to his trainers and everyone who helped him. He does take this opportunity to set the record straight about things people have said about him in their own books and the media, but he does take the high road and does not name and shame other people he could have got into trouble especially when he is talking about his drug problems. Yes he made mistakes but he owns up to them and he give the facts like he is asking me (or any other reader) if suddenly you are in a situation you have everything you have worked you whole life for and more, do you think you are entitled to the excess and temptations the life of a superstar celebrity offers? The more mature Sugar Ray Leonard looks back and say nobody held a gun to his head but saying do this but in that situation what would anyone do? Say no to the women, the power player, yes man feeding his ego, and even the "friends" looking for hand outs. Many of who would encourage him to stay past his time.
One thing that comes through in this book is how grateful Leonard is about the life and opportunities he was given/earned. Also how thankful he is to have left boxing better then he went into it. His money well managed, still possessing his mental facilities, when so many of the boxers of her era suffering from everything including brain damage to bankruptcy.
This is a great book for everyone. Tremendous story. Brutally honest about the pit falls and rewards or success. Coming from some who has lived through more than most people have it mean so much more. You can even learn about the finer points of boxing and showman ship which people can use to further themselves in any walk of life or career. Great book, about a great career, and a man finding what he wants and what he needs including redemption.
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Initial post: 8 Jul 2013 14:54:44 BDT
K. G. A. Alavi says:
I just got my copy signed by thhe man himself. I love comic con
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