Oliveira promises to school Hatton Dec. 11 in London
08.11.04 – “I’m going to school Ricky Hatton like I did Vivian Harris,” promises ‘Sucra’ Ray Oliveira. Hatton (37-0, 27 KOs) defends his WBU light welterweight title for the 15th time December 11 in London against cagey Oliveira in what Hatton has termed as a “tune-up fight” for his IBF mandatory against champion Kosta Tszyu sometime in 2005.
Article posted on 08.11.2004
Oliveira (47-9-2, 22 KOs), 36, vows to be a spoiler. He is exactly 10 years older than Hatton – they share October 6 birthdays – and the Massachusetts (New Bedford) boxer has much more ring experience than Hatton, 440-182 in rounds.
In addition to handing present WBA light welterweight champion Harris his lone defeat (WUDEC 10 – 98-93, 97-93, & 97-93), Oliveria’s 14-year pro career includes victories against former world champions Charles Murray (twice) and Vince Phillips, and most of his losses have been to former world champions and/or top 10 contenders such as Vernon Forrest, Reggie Green, Ben Tackie, Jake Rodriguez and Zack Padilla.
“Nobody’s ever stopped me and only two men have ever floored me, Jake ‘The Snake’ (Rodriguez) and (Vernon) Forrest,” Oliveira noted. “It’s funny. I always wanted to fight Micky Ward (who lives in the same state as Ray) and now I’m getting a British guy who fights a lot like a young Ward. I can’t brawl with him. He’s too tough, plus he’s fighting at his weight (Oliveira hasn’t fought at 140 pounds in three years). I’m going to box him, throw a lot of punches, like I’m known for. Now, though, my punches have more power behind ‘em.
“It’s going to be a tough fight. I just hope he keeps preparing for this as a tune-up fight. He keeps looking ahead to Tszyu and that’s fine with me; I know, I’m old, slowing down, and can’t hurt anybody. Hey, Hatton’s going to be in for the surprise of his life if he believes any of that BS. I’ve seen everything in the ring and my experience is going to be the difference. I read where he said he’s going to keep me running the whole fight. I hope so because I fight my best backing up. Only once did anybody fight me like that, Zack Padilla, and the first four rounds I was on my toes whopping him the entire time. But then I heard the crowd and sat down on my punches (Oliveira lost a 12 round decision for the WBO light welterweight title). That was the fight where we set the record for most punches throw (3,020 in a single fight).
“‘Sucra’ Ray Oliveria’s never been a tune-up for anybody, never mind this English kid. Hatton will find out December 11 for himself. He’s going to be Professor Oliveira’s student in Boxing 101. I can’t wait.”
Oliveira’s promoter, Jimmy Burchfield (Classic Entertainment & Sports, Inc., made the deal with Hatton’s promoter, Frank Warren. “This is Ray’s opportunity to get the respect he deserves, but hasn’t received over the years,’ Burchfield added. “He’s been a true warrior, never turning down a fight, and this is his time to shine.”
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