The little fighters

Fusion

Kids try to box their way out of poverty. But is the sport that claims to save lives actually slowly killing them from the inside?

The Old And The New

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Boxers die.

It happens. In the amateurs and in the pros, in the ring or in the hospital, by hemorrhage or by hematoma: Every year, boxers are killed or seriously injured by fighting.

“You can play everything else, you can’t play boxing,” says Bernard Hackett, who was coaching his 12-year-old son, Durnell, at the Junior Golden Gloves National Championships in Nevada. “Boxing is a sport you don’t play.”

Young boxers and their coaches and parents know the immediate risk. As with football, hockey, gymnastics, lacrosse and rugby, they weigh it against so much else, and take comfort that catastrophic injuries are rare.

But, there is another danger: chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE.

The disease, which rots brains from…

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