It’s like a paradox. I’m a fighter but yet, I’m so fearful. I don’t fight back and I don’t tell anyone. I don’t confront it. So I lived with those periods for 30-some years but I remember too, that when I drank heavily, when my emotions were not as stable, I would cry, sob and the pain — it felt good. I felt embarrassed but it felt good because I released some of those memories or that poison that was in my stomach.
— In a new autobiography, The Big Fight, Sugar Ray Leonard details his own struggles with rage, addiction, sexual abuse and depression. Leonard talks with Fresh Air’s Dave Davies about how he battled these obstacles and went from a shy kid growing up around Washington, D.C., to a hugely successful boxer.