Introduced To Boxing
While Lewis's mother worked in a Styrofoam factory, he attended schools in Kitchener, Ontario. A hyperactive child, he began getting into fights in Canada as well. Lewis told Pat Putnam of Sports Illustrated, "That's when I became a fighter. All the kids made fun of my accent, and I punched out the lot. After my third strapping with the belt, my teacher advised I take my aggressions out in sport."
In 1978, Lewis had his first amateur bout. He calmed down, and learned to love boxing. He told William Nack of Sports Illustrated, "I liked it. It was ego against ego. Both looking at each other all the time. A chess game. The oneon-one is what appealed to me about boxing." Lewis was growing so large that he boxed against boys older than him.
In high school, however, Lewis did not just box. While attending Cameron Heights Collegiate High, he played fullback on football team, power forward on basketball team, and did track as a shot-putter. But boxing was his focus after a while, and Lewis was a big fan of Muhammad Ali.