Following the last attempt of Mickey Ward to win a boxing title we dive into the people around him and shape him into the boxer he has become. Unfortunately the boxer he has become is on a losing streak and Mickey seems destined to be another one of the many has-beens of the boxing world. His brother Dicky is one of those has-beens but is thinking about making a comeback for which he is being followed around by an HBO camera crew. Dicky is the pride of Lowell, Mass., where the brothers are from and still reside, and Mickey has always played second fiddle to both Dickey and their Mom who seems most concerned about the elder sibling’s career. After getting his ass kicked by a last minute replacement in his apparent stepping stone match, Mickey and his new girlfriend Charlene begin to outline a new plan for him as his family life spins out of control.