Keyon Dooling abruptly ended his NBA career last week, when he retired from the Boston Celtics. In an interview with Jessica Camerato of CSNNE.com, he shared details of the personal demons that contributed to that decision, including the revelation that he’d been abused as a child.
“I actually had such a meltdown that I had to get professional help and I ended up in the hospital,” said Dooling. “It just all came to a head. To be honest with you, I blocked a lot of things out of my life. I’m a man who’s been abused, sexually, emotionally, mentally. I’ve been abused in my life, and there’s so many guys around the NBA who have been abused and I know it because I’ve been their therapist. I didn’t even have the courage because I blocked it out so much that I couldn’t even share that.”
“I just couldn’t embrace it at that time … I just wish I had the courage to talk about my abuses, and I’m not putting anybody out there because that’s neither here nor there. I was abused by some random people and some familiar people and it happened not frequently, but it happened. One time is too many. I just wish I had the courage because so many of our guys have been abused.”
Concussions have become big business in the football world. With 1,700 players in the NFL, 66,000 in the college game, 1.1 million in high school and 250,000 more in Pop Warner, athletes and families across the country are eager to find ways to cut the risks of brain injury, whose terrifying consequences regularly tear across the sports pages. And a wave of companies offering diagnostic tools and concussion treatments are just as eager to sell them peace of mind.
That’s actually a slogan for one company. ImPACT, the maker of the world’s most popular concussion evaluation system, offers a 20-minute computerized test that players can take via software or online to measure verbal and visual memory, processing speed, reaction time and impulse control. The idea behind ImPACT (Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing) and similar batteries is that doctors or athletic trainers can give a baseline test to a healthy athlete, conduct follow-up tests after an injury and then compare the results to help figure out when it’s OK to return the athlete to play. Selling itself as “Valid. Reliable. Safe,” ImPACT dominates the testing market and has spread throughout the sports world: Most NFL clubs use the test, as do all MLB, MLS and NHL clubs, the national associations for boxing, hockey and soccer in the U.S., and nine auto racing circuits.
for the full article visit – Neuropsychological testing for concussions might not be panacea – ESPN.
Wookieepedia: Via was a goddess worshipped by several ancient Human cultures during the Pre-Republic era including the Zhell of Coruscant and the Seoularians. →
(CNN) — With convicted serial child sex abuser Jerry Sandusky behind bars, new questions are surfacing about what Penn State officials knew about a 2001 incident involving the former assistant football coach’s encounter with a boy in the shower — and whether they covered up the incident.
After the 2001 incident, Sandusky sexually abused other boys over the course of years until his arrest.
CNN does not have the purported e-mails. However, the alleged contents were made available to CNN.
The messages indicate former Penn State President Graham Spanier and two other former university officials knew they had a problem with Sandusky after a 2001 shower incident, but apparently first decided to handle it using a “humane” approach before contacting outside authorities whose job it is to investigate suspected abuse.
“This is a more humane and upfront way to handle this,’ wrote Gary Schultz, then vice president at the university.
Records show no authorities were ever contacted and Sandusky was eventually charged with having sexual contact with four more boys after the 2001 incident. On June 22, Sandusky was convicted of abusing 10 boys over 15 years.
In an exchange of messages from February 26-28, 2001, Spanier allegedly acknowledges Penn State could be “vulnerable” for not reporting the incident, according to two sources with knowledge of the case.
“The only downside for us is if the message (to Sandusky) isn’t ‘heard’ and acted upon, and we then become vulnerable for not having reported it,” Spanier purportedly writes.
The alleged e-mails among Spanier, Schultz, 62, and former Athletic Director Tim Curley, 57, never mention Sandusky by name, instead referring to him as “the subject” and “the person.” Children that Sandusky brought on campus –some of whom might have been victims — are referred to as “guests.”
The exchanges began 16 days after graduate assistant Mike McQueary first told Coach Joe Paterno on February 9, 2001, that McQueary believed he saw Sandusky make sexual contact with a boy in a locker room shower.
Since the scandal broke, Spanier, Schultz and Curley have publicly maintained McQueary reported only inappropriate conduct — horsing around. The purported e-mails indicate the men could be at additional risk for not disclosing the matter to authorities. Schultz and Curley are currently charged with perjury and failing to report suspected child abuse. They have pleaded not guilty.
Paterno testified before a grand jury that McQueary was “very upset” and said he saw Sandusky “doing something with a youngster. It was a sexual nature,” according to a transcript. Paterno testified he told his boss, Curley. Curley and Schultz contacted McQueary about a week and half later about the incident.
In an alleged e-mail dated February 26, 2001, Schultz writes to Curley that he assumes Curley’s “got the ball” about a three-part plan to “talk with the subject asap regarding the future appropriate use of the University facility,” … “contacting the chair of the charitable organization” and “contacting the Department of Welfare,” according to a source with knowledge of the case.
Schultz refers to Sandusky as the “subject” and Sandusky’s Second Mile charity as the “charitable organization,” according to a source with knowledge of the e-mails.
Pennsylvania law requires suspected child abuse be reported to outside authorities, including the state’s child welfare agencies.
But then, something changes.
The next evening, February 27, Curley allegedly writes to Spanier. Schultz, who’s out of the office for two weeks, is copied.
Curley refers to a meeting scheduled that day with Spanier and indicates they apparently discussed the Sandusky incident two days earlier.
Curley indicates he no longer wants to contact child welfare authorities just yet. He refers to a conversation the day before with Paterno. It’s not known what Paterno may have said to Curley.
Curley writes: “After giving it more thought and talking it over with Joe yesterday, I am uncomfortable with what we agreed were the next steps.”
The athletic director apparently preferred to keep the situation an internal affair and talk things over with Sandusky instead of notifying the state’s child welfare agency to investigate Sandusky’s suspicious activity.
“I am having trouble with going to everyone, but the person involved,” Curley allegedly continues.
Curley writes he’d be “more comfortable” meeting with Sandusky himself and telling him they know about the 2001 incident and — according to a source with knowledge of the case — refers to another shower incident with a boy in 1998 that was investigated by police, but never resulted in charges against Sandusky.
Curley writes to Penn State’s president Spanier that he wants to meet with Sandusky, tell him there’s “a problem,” and that “we want to assist the individual to get professional help.”
In the same purported e-mail provided to CNN, Curley goes on to suggest that if Sandusky “is cooperative,” Penn State “would work with him” to tell Second Mile. If not, Curley states, the university will inform both Second Mile and outside authorities.
Curley adds that he intends to inform Sandusky that his “guests” won’t be allowed to use Penn State facilities anymore.
“What do you think of this approach?” Curley allegedly wrote to Spanier.
About two hours later, Spanier responded to Curley in another e-mail and copied Schultz. Spanier allegedly called the plan “acceptable”, but worries whether it’s the right thing to do, according to two sources.
“The only downside for us is if the message (to Sandusky) isn’t ‘heard’ and acted upon, and we then become vulnerable for not having reported it,” Spanier purportedly wrote.
“But that can be assessed down the down the road. The approach you outline is humane and a reasonable way to proceed,” he adds.
The next afternoon, Schultz allegedly responded to the Penn State president and its athletic director. Schultz signs off on handling the matter without telling anyone on the outside, at least for now.
“This is a more humane and upfront way to handle this,’ Schultz purportedly wrote. But he made clear Penn State should inform Sandusky’s charity Second Mile “with or without (Sandusky’s) cooperation.”
As for telling child welfare authorities, he added, “we can play it by ear.”
No one ever reported the 2001 shower incident. A decade later, a 2011 grand jury found no Pennsylvania law enforcement or child welfare agency was ever told.
“It was not only not humane to give Sandusky a pass, but inhumane towards young men who fell prey to him,” said attorney Tom Kline, who represents Victim 5. About six months after the February 2001 incident witnessed by McQueary, Victim 5 was molested. Last week, Sandusky was convicted of having unlawful sexual contact with Victim 5, among 44 other counts involving nine other boys.
Schultz and Curley already are charged with perjury fofr allegedly lying to a grand jury and failure to reported suspected child abuse.
Sources say based on the e-mails and other documents, they could face additional charges. Spanier, sources say, could also be charged, law enforcement sources and legal experts say.
As part of an ongoing grand jury investigation, state prosecutors are pouring over the e-mails turned over by Penn State as part of its own investigation, led by former FBI Director Louis Freeh.
According to court papers, the government is also examining a Sandusky file left behind by Schultz. In a statement, Schultz’s attorney Tom Farrell says Schultz who retired in 2009, did not keep any “secret” files.
Prosecutors say the file was created, maintained, and possessed by Schultz and assert documents in the file are “inconsistent” with statements made by Schultz and Curley to a grand jury.
One inconsistency may involve Schultz’s grand jury testimony stating the state’s child welfare agency was notified about the 2001 shower incident. “My recollection would be … (in 2002) … that they were asked to look into this allegation,” Schultz testified.
He also testified any notes he “probably” took about the 2002 incident may have been destroyed when he retired in 2009.
Curley’s grand jury testimony also appears inconsistent with the e-mails. In the messages, he refers to “a first situation” in 1998, yet he told a grand jury he wasn’t aware of any other allegations of alleged sexual conduct involving Sandusky.
A prosecutor asked Curley: “Specifically, a 1998 report, did you know anything about that in 2002?” Curley responded: “No, ma’am.”
Schultz and Curley, through their lawyers, consistently maintain McQueary didn’t tell them about a sexual assault in 2001, and instead said McQueary described “inappropriate conduct” or horsing around.
McQueary has repeatedly testified he told Penn State officials he saw a boy with his hands up against a wall with Sandusky behind him and heard slapping, rhythmic sounds. He added that someone wouldn’t have to be “a rocket scientist” to figure out what was going on.
A jury acquitted Sandusky of rape involving the 2001 incident, and instead found Sandusky guilty of several other counts involved in that shower incident including unlawful sexual contact.
Spanier’s lawyer did not respond to calls from CNN seeking comment for this story.
According to Penn State’s board of trustees, Spanier was fired last year because “he failed to meet his leadership responsibilities.”
Shortly after his dismissal, Spanier issued a statement that said, in part, “I was stunned and outraged to learn that any predatory act might have occurred in a university facility or by someone associated with the university. … I would never hesitate to report a crime if I had any suspicion that one had been committed.”
In a statement to CNN, lawyers for Schultz and Curley said both men were doing the best they could about a report of “inappropriate conduct” by a man with a stellar reputation.
“As Governor Tom Corbett stated, ‘If we were going to do this case, we had to have the best possible case to go against somebody like Mr. Sandusky who was … loved by everybody. Carried out of the football stadium on the shoulders of his football team. How can anybody say there must be something wrong with him?’” the lawyers’ statement read, citing Corbett’s remarks in a June 25 article by The Patriot News.
“For Curley, Schultz, Spanier and Paterno, the responsible and ‘humane’ thing to do was, like Governor Corbett (said), to carefully and responsibly assess the best way to handle vague, but troubling allegations. Faced with tough situations, good people try to do their best to make the right decisions.”
A spokesman for Paterno’s family, who has not seen any e-mails, told CNN Paterno didn’t communicate by e-mail and defended the coach.
“Everyone should want the truth … and Joe always told the truth,” Dan McGinn told CNN. “He did the right thing. He told his boss about McQueary.”
One thing is clear. There’s no evidence Penn State did anything to find the boy involved in the 2001 incident.
The night Sandusky was led away in handcuffs, Penn State issued a statement calling for healing. So did the family of Joe Paterno.
Healing might take time. Everyone is waiting for the results of Freeh’s investigation, anticipated by this fall. It’s unclear when state investigators will finish their work. The Justice Department is also conducting a probe, as is the U.S. Department of Education and the NCAA.
And Penn State is already reaching out to attorneys representing Sandusky’s victims.
Their lawsuits have yet to be filed.
Kline, Victim 5′s attorney, said he wants to see the results of Penn State’s investigation.
“Everything we saw in this trial could have been stopped by Penn State,” Kline told CNN.
“This is an American tragedy of monumental proportions.”
CNN’s Dana Garrett and Chris Boyette contributed to this report
Wikipedia: schultz definition: Theodore 1902–1998 American economist. →
Jeannine Donato’s life changed when she got a call two years ago that her youngest son Nolan was being rushed by ambulance to Children’s Hospital in Boston after being hit into the boards during a hockey game.
Donato is no stranger to head injuries or hockey. She worked as a nurse in the head trauma unit at Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston and she is the wife of Ted Donato, a 13-year NHL veteran who played for the Boston Bruins and now coaches the Harvard University men’s hockey team.
Donato’s son Nolan was diagnosed with a concussion and doctors asked if he had ever taken a baseline concussion test – a computerized exam that measures cognitive abilities such as recall, reaction time and pattern recognition.
Donato had never heard of it until that day but made it her mission to make the test available to athletes of all ages. So she founded the business, A Head of the Game.
Donato, now the Abington public health nurse and a board member at South Shore Hospital in Weymouth, is offering the test on Friday at the Abington senior center from 4 to 8 p.m. to any student athletes ages 10 and older.
A concussion is a traumatic brain injury caused by a blow that jars or shakes the brain inside the skull.
The test to be given on Friday measures visual and verbal memory and reaction times. It is taken before the athlete’s season begins, and then, if a concussion is sustained, the test is retaken and used to measure the severity of the injury, the part of the brain affected and the progress of recovery.
“If kids don’t have the baseline test, it’s a guessing game for when they’re ready to go back (after a concussion),” said Donato.
“Without baseline testing, 20 to 30 percent of athletes will report being symptom-free without being back to normal,” said Bill Meehan, director of the sports concussion clinic and director of research for the brain injury center at Children’s Hospital in Boston.
The risks of resuming sports play are serious, said Meehan. One of the most dangerous is “second impact” syndrome, which is caused when the brain is not fully healed from a concussion, is re-injured and can result in traumatic brain swelling.
“It is hard to tell when someone’s recovered,” said Meehan. “It takes longer to recover if someone continues to sustain injuries.”
The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association does not require baseline concussion testing but has increased concussion awareness over the last few years as head injuries continue to become more of a concern for student athletes and their parents.
A new state law requires all athletes, coaches, school nurses and parents to take a concussion education online test, requires schools to keep a record of all concussions and for each athlete to be cleared by a medical professional before returning to play after a concussion.
Abington’s youth sports teams, including the Abington Lacrosse League and Abington Youth Football, have been notified of the testing this week and league presidents say they have encouraged athletes to attend.
Most athletes who sustain one or two concussions will recover completely if the injury is treated correctly, said Dr. Meehan.
Erin Shannon may be reached at email@example.com.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The Daytona 500 has been halted by a fiery explosion caused when Juan Pablo Montoya slammed into a jet dryer under caution.
It’s the latest mess to hamper NASCAR’s season-opening race.
Montoya was driving well behind the rest of the field when something on his car broke, and he started sliding out of control toward the truck, which holds 200 gallons of jet kerosene.
Montoya’s No. 42 Chevrolet hammered the truck, setting off an explosion and sending fuel pouring onto the famed track.
Montoya got out unharmed, although he seemed to stagger around the infield grass. The driver of the truck had to be helped from the vehicle.
Dave Blaney was leading at the time of the wreck, followed by Landon Cassill, Tony Raines and David Gilliland. All of them are relative unknowns in the Sprint Cup Series.
The Daytona 500 was postponed more than 30 hours because of rain, rescheduled as a primetime event under the lights.
The delay came two years after the 500 was halted for hours because of a pesky pothole in turn two. That one damaged the track so much that officials moved up a scheduled repaving to the track.
The explosion and the eventual removal of the truck seemed to damage the track, gouging lines into the pavement.
By AL ARABIYA WITH AGENCIES
At least 73 people have been killed after a riot erupted during an Egyptian League football match in Cairo on Wednesday.
The Ministry of Health reported that hundredrs of people were injured after fans chased Al Ahly soccer players after they lost a match to the home team.
The fans cornered supporters on the field in the port city of Port Said and around the stadium, throwing stones and bottles at them.
The game was between Al Ahly, one of Egypt’s most successful clubs, and al-Masry, a team based in Port Said. Live television footage showed fans running onto the field and chasing Ahly soccer players.
By Linda Carroll
Teen athletes at risk for sudden cardiac death may be falling through the cracks because doctors are skipping parts of screening exams, a new study shows.
In pre-season physicals for high school sports, fewer than 6 percent of doctors followed the potentially life-saving screening guidelines suggested by the American Heart Association, according to a report presented at the Heart Association’s annual meeting.
While doctors typically listen to young athletes’ hearts and record blood pressures, they often fail to ask important questions designed to ferret out heart disease risk. For example, 67 percent of surveyed doctors said they didn’t always ask teens whether any family members suffered from heart problems.
Even more alarming – barely half of the physicians were even aware that the AHA guidelines existed.
More than 7 million teens play high school sports, according to Dr. Nicolas Madsen, a cardiology fellow at Seattle Children’s Hospital of the University of Washington. Studies show that sudden death occurs at a rate of one in 30,000 to 40,000. That translates into 175 to 233 deaths each year among high school athletes.
Perfect season ends in tragedy: High schooler dies after game-winning shot
Recently, there’s been a push to add more tests, such as electrocardiograms, to the standard student-athlete physical, said Madsen, the study’s lead author. But we can’t know whether those additional tests are necessary until all physicians are following current guidelines to the letter, Madsen added.
For the new study Madsen and his colleagues sent out surveys to every family practice doctor and every pediatrician in Washington State. The response was high with 72 percent of pediatricians and 56 percent of family practitioners returning surveys.
Doctors did most poorly when it came to asking about the heart health of teens and their families.
28 percent didn’t always ask if a teen had chest pain during exercise
22 percent didn’t always ask if the teen ever experienced unexplained fainting
26 percent didn’t always ask about a family history of early deaths
67 percent didn’t always ask about a family history of heart disease.
While it’s heartening to see that most doctors did remember to ask about sudden deaths in a teen’s family, it’s distressing to see that more than two thirds of doctors weren’t always asking about a family history of heart disease in their exams, Madsen said.
That means that doctors could be missing families in which there were recognized heart problems, but no one had died.
For Dr. Gaurav Arora the biggest surprise in the new study was the number of physicians who said they didn’t always ask about chest pain or fainting.
“Those are red flags in young athletes,” said Arora, associate director of electrophysiology at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh and an assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh.
One explanation for the new findings is that there is no single form being used by doctors doing pre-season physicals for student athletes, Arora said. Things would be a lot simpler if everyone used the same screening criteria.
Beyond that, Arora said, “we need better education across the board for all providers doing screening.”
Editor’s note: LZ Granderson, who writes a weekly column for CNN.com, was named journalist of the year by the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association and is a 2011 Online Journalism Award finalist for commentary. He is a senior writer and columnist for ESPN the Magazine and ESPN.com and the 2009 winner of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation award for online journalism. Follow him on Twitter at @locs_n_laughs.
Grand Rapids, Michigan (CNN) — If you haven’t heard the audio clip of high school football coach Shawn Abel going off, you need to take two minutes out of your life to do so.
It is classic.
Dude is yelling and screaming and you can hear stuff being banged around, and I don’t believe any actor outside of maybe Samuel L. Jackson could come close to re-enacting the level of passion that is wrapped around each curse word that comes flying out of this man’s mouth.
It is ^%$^&!! unbelievable.
But based on that clip — and the fact Abel is smart enough to teach A.P. precalculus — if my son played football at Collierville, I would be perfectly fine with him having Abel as his coach. Unfortunately Coach Abel resigned this week because, well, this audio clip exists. Some of the players secretly recorded Abel’s pregame speech, and one of them posted it on YouTube.
The actions of the players make me more upset than Abel’s rant.
Coach was ticked because they weren’t playing together as a team. What kind of player leaks his coach’s speech to the press?
A selfish one, thus proving his point.
While I’m sure it was uncomfortable for some of the players to sit through, I didn’t hear anything that was offensive. He cursed, he yelled. Big deal. It’s football, not Sesame Street.
If this is his only offense, the community should rally around the coach, encourage him to come back and tell the high school players to toughen up. They should not punish a man who has poured 25 years of his life into the community or someone who cares so much he talks about being a Collierville Dragon with pride.
Obviously if he’s been a teacher at the school for this many years, he clearly understands the difference between the field and the classroom, otherwise he would have been fired for going the ^%^%* off years ago. There is certainly language that I think is unacceptable under any circumstances, but I didn’t hear any of that on the clip.
He didn’t use any slurs; he didn’t threaten a player’s safety; he didn’t call the players anything other than apathetic and selfish. In some ways, it was one of the most respectful undressings I’ve ever heard. Since the story broke, there’s been a Facebook page established to show support. I’ve also seen anonymous quotes from Collierville players characterizing Abel as a “psycho” and noting that wasn’t his first rant. And I’m sure it wasn’t, given they had lost four of five games and need to win Friday to make the playoffs.
But funny, I didn’t see any quotes that denied Abel’s assessment of the team’s playing or their commitment to hard work. It was as if the players knew they weren’t playing up to their potential. They just didn’t like the way the coach said it. And having been around sports my entire adult life, I can tell you a lot of athletes — on every level — do not like it when a coach points out their faults. There is a line, but Abel didn’t cross it. There are some places in life where boo boos are met with a hug. The locker room is not one of them.
Near my home there is a gymnastics school, and plastered on the wall facing the highway it reads “Every child is a champion.” Each time I drive by, I just want to pull over, run inside and tell the kids the truth.
“Little Johnny, Little David, Mitch… these people are lying to you — only one of you can be a champion. They don’t hand out three gold medals… See you later.”
We are so obsessed with shielding kids from disappointment and discomfort that they have no idea how to deal with life when they leave the nest. That’s not parenting, that’s crippling.
Abel’s speech may have been shocking, but it may also have been the best thing to have happened to a kid in that locker room because it placed him in a highly stressful, highly confrontational situation, and the kid learned he can handle it.
I can hear parents now saying, “But this is just high school,” to which I say, yes it is, and Abel was trying to teach his players something. I hope they reinstate him as coach so he can finish the lesson.
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of LZ Granderson.
LAS VEGAS (AP) – Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon died Sunday in a fiery 15-car wreck at Las Vegas Motor Speedway when his car flew over another on Lap 13 and smashed into the wall just outside turn 2.
Wheldon was 33. Drivers were told of Wheldon’s death in a meeting about two hours after the fiery, smoky crash that many drivers said was the worst they had ever seen.
He won the Indianapolis 500 twice, including this year.
“IndyCar is very sad to announce that Dan Wheldon has passed away from unsurvivable injuries,” IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family today. IndyCar, its drivers and owners, have decided to end the race. In honor of Dan Wheldon, the drivers have decided to do a five-lap salute to in his honor.”
Three other drivers, including championship contender Will Power, were hurt in the pileup.
The wreck left Townsend Bell upside down and smoldering cars and debris littered the track nearly halfway up the straightaway of the 1.5-mile oval.
The track was red-flagged following the accidents while crews worked on fences and removed smashed cars.
Wheldon started in the back of the pack but quickly worked his way through the 34-car field before the wreck.
“It was like a movie scene which they try to make as gnarly as possible,” said Danica Patrick, making her final IndyCar start. “It was debris everywhere across the whole track, you could smell the smoke, you could see the billowing smoke on the back straight from the car. There was a chunk of fire that we were driving around. You could see cars scattered.
Drivers had been concerned about the high speeds at the track, where they were hitting nearly 225 mph during practice.
Their concerns became reality when contact on Turn 2 sent cars flying through the air, crashing into each other and into the outside wall and catch fence.
“I’ll tell you, I’ve never seen anything like it,” Ryan Briscoe said. “The debris we all had to drive through the lap later, it looked like a war scene from Terminator or something. I mean, there were just pieces of metal and car on fire in the middle of the track with no car attached to it and just debris everywhere. So it was scary, and your first thoughts are hoping that no one is hurt because there’s just stuff everywhere. Crazy.”
Ricky Hatton says depression almost drove him to suicide after he was knocked out by Manny Pacquiao in 2009.
In an exclusive interview on BBC Radio 5 live, Hatton explained how his life spiralled out of control in a battle with drink and drugs.
Hatton confirmed his retirement in July and now runs a successful promoting business.
But he said: “I was so down, I was crying and breaking out and contemplating suicide.”
Hatton lost to Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas in May 2009 with a brutal second-round knockout.
He said: “I was going deeper and deeper into depression.
“I was getting depressed. I was going out and having a few drinks. The worst thing you can do with depression is add alcohol to it.
“I needed something to get my backside into gear and pull my finger out. Sometimes you have to hit rock bottom to think, ‘Blimey Ricky, get a grip’.
“Depression is a serious thing and, after my defeat to Manny Pacquiao, I contemplated retirement and didn’t cope with it very well.”