Sep 22, 2012 — Boxer Ray "Boom Boom" Mancini won the championship his fighter father never could — but his life was marred by tragedy when he defended his title against a South Korean boxer who died after the match. A new biography of Mancini describes how his life changed after that fateful fight.
Jun 16, 2012 — Years before Jack Johnson and decades before Muhammad Ali, a man named Joe Gans was blazing trails as the first African-American boxing champion. Gans is mostly forgotten now, but a new book uncovers the story of his epic 42-round title defense against a white boxer in 1906.
Jun 7, 2012 — Julian Barnes returns with a Booker Prize-winning novel while Michael Parker wins big praise for his historical story set in North Carolina. In nonfiction, there are memoirs by writer Joan Didion and boxer Sugar Ray Leonard, plus David M. Eagleman looks into the secret life of the brain.
Jun 22, 2011 — Sugar Ray Leonard was feared in the boxing ring and adored outside of it. He captured the world's attention when winning gold at the 1976 Olympics, and is credited with keeping boxing relevant to a new generation. But a complex personal tale lies behind that bright personality. Host Michel Martin speaks with Sugar Ray Leonard about his new autobiography The Big Fight: My Life In and Out of the Ring.
Jun 6, 2011 — The former boxing champ won world titles in five weight divisions and received a gold medal at the 1976 Olympics. In his new autobiography, The Big Fight, Leonard details the obstacles he battled — including sexual abuse and addictions — during his career.
Dec 30, 2009 — Wil Haygood talks to Steve Inskeep about the life and career of Sugar Ray Robinson, including his many fights against rival boxer Jake LaMotta. Haygood is the author of a new biography of Robinson called Sweet Thunder.
Feb 20, 2008 — Evander Holyfield began his boxing career as a 65-pound eight-year-old and eventually became the world heavyweight champion. The boxing legend talks about his career, his new book Becoming Holyfield, and the infamous ear-biting incident.
Dec 2, 2006 — Ali Rap collects more than 300 quotable moments from the life of The Greatest, beginning with the days of the brash young fighter Cassius Clay and following him through trials and tribulations, victory and defeat as he grows into Muhammad Ali, the global icon.
Mar 22, 2006 — The relationship between champion boxer Muhammad Ali and TV sports personality Howard Cosell made for some of the best theater in American sports. Sportswriter David Kindred to write Sound and Fury: Two Powerful Lives, One Fateful Friendship.
May 13, 2005 — Most boxing fans reserve the phrase "pound for pound" — used to describe a boxer of tremendous skill, regardless of the weight category — for the man considered the best fighter in history: Sugar Ray Robinson. A new biography charts the fighter's rise and fall in and out of the ring.