Q & A With Mike Arnaoutis and Delvin Rodriguez
On Friday April 2nd, the Pride of Greece, "Mighty" Mike Arnaoutis (22-4-2, 10KO) will move up in weight as he looks to establish himself as a force to be reckoned with in the welterweight division when he challengers Delvin Rodriguez (24-4-2, 14KO) for the USBA welterweight championship in Rodriguez's backyard at the Mohegan Sun Resort and Casino. The fight is scheduled for twelve rounds and will be the main event bout of the evening on that night's ESPN "Friday Night Fights" telecast.
Article posted on 30.03.2010
Arnaoutis recently sat down to talk about his upcoming fight, why he decided to move up in weight, and where he hopes to be by the end of this year..
Q: Mighty Mike, thanks for taking time out to sit down with us, how has training been for this fight? Have you been doing anything different for this fight being you are going up in weight from jr. welter to welter? Are you more comfortable at this weight?
MA: Training and my preparation for this fight couldn't have been better. I have had 106 rounds of sparring in my training preparation for this fight and my whole training camp has been fantastic. I am also much more comfortable fighting at 147 pounds, because I don't have to starve myself anymore; I'm really glad that I listened to my team and moved to welterweight. On top of my regular training regime a strength and conditioning coach has been added to make sure I put the weight on the right way. The strength and conditioning has helped me out a lot, I feel very strong and everyone has also been telling me that I look bigger and stronger. Physically and mentally, I am in the best shape of my life, and everyone will see that come fight night in the way that I will beat Rodriguez.
Q: What do you know about your opponent Delvin Rodriguez?
MA: I have seen some of Rodriguez fights, and what I saw was a brawler trapped in a tall mans body and that makes him a perfect guy for me to fight. I have nothing against Rodriguez, but all I am thinking about is that he has what I want and when I get in that ring I will be ready for war and I am going to destroy him.
Q: You are fighting at the Mohegan Sun which is right in Delvin's backyard, does that bother you at all?
MA: No it doesn't bother me. I have fought everywhere throughout my career. My backyard, his backyard, it doesn't make a difference, once the bell rings it's just me and him in the ring, his fans can't help him because like I said I will destroy him. I also want Rodriguez and all of his fans to know that someone in this fight is going to get brutally knocked out and that person is not going to be me. Plus you can definitely count on seeing more than a few Greek flags waving and Greek fans screaming for me come fight night.
Q: Not looking past Delvin, but if you win, what do you see on the horizon?
MA: Right now the only thing I am thinking about is the execution of Rodriguez. I want that USBA championship and the world ranking, and after everyone see's me destroy Rodriguez, everyone in the welterweight division will know that "Mighty" Mike is here and here to stay. After I beat Rodriguez my managers will decide who I will fight next, but honestly I know that I match up with any of the top guys in the division, so whoever steps up to the plate first, that's who we will fight in 2010.
Q: Want to thank you Mike for sitting down with us. Anything you want to say in closing?
MA: I want to thank my promoter Joe DeGuardia (Star Boxing) for staging this fight. I want to thank my team of managers, Jimmy "Zeek" Hartofilis, and Mike Michaels for giving me everything I have asked for and for making this fight happen. Lastly I want to thank all my fans who continue to show their support and who will be there cheering me on April 2nd, I won't disappoint.
Delvin Rodriguez Q & A
On Friday April 2nd, Delvin Rodriguez (24-4-2, 14KO) looks to put himself back into the welterweight title picture when he takes on former world title challenger, "Mighty" Mike Arnaoutis (22-4-2, 10KO) on ESPN's "Friday Night Fights" at the Mohegan Sun Resort and Casino in Uncasville, CT. Rodriguez recently took time out of his busy training schedule to talk about his upcoming fight, how he is looking to get past a bitter 2009, and where he sees himself at the end of this year.
Q: Delvin, how has training camp been for this fight?
DR: Just like always, training camp has been good. I have been getting real good sparring and I am working hard. I'm in great shape and just ready and anxious to go out there and defend my belt on April 2nd.
Q: Other then him being a southpaw and a former world title challenger at jr. welterweight, what else do you know about your opponent Mike Arnaoutis coming into this fight?
DR: I have seen a few tapes on him, he seems like a pretty tough and durable guy, and he definitely has skills. I am ready though. I am planning on coming out very aggressively in this fight and I do plan on stopping him. I'm sick and tired of leaving fights up to the judge's scorecards and coming up on the short end. You can't get robbed if you knock your opponent out, and that's what my mission is going to be every time I step into that ring.
Q: In your last fight against Rafal Jackiewicz, you fought very aggressively, is that the type of style we can expect to see from you here on out, or do you approach each fight differently?
DR: Yes, as I touched on in the last question, my game plan for this fight and for every fight for the rest of my career is to jump right on my opponent and be very aggressive right from the opening bell. In both my fights with Hlatshwayo and my fight with Jackiewicz I had them hurt very badly, and I let them off the hook. I can promise you that won't happen anymore. If I have you hurt, I am going to do everything I can to knock you out, or force the referee to stop it. I'm going into this year with a new attitude. At this stage of my career I can't afford to let any more opportunities slip away. Expect to see fireworks each and every time I'm in that ring from here on out.
Q: Talking about your fight with Jackiewicz, in a fight that you absolutely dominated in punch stats, including throwing more then 700 punches than he did and almost knocking him out, how upset were you that he was awarded the decision? Have you been able to get over that or are you still bitter?
DR: Anyone who has seen that fight knows how ridiculous the decision was. Honestly you don't even need to watch it, if you just take a look at the punch stat numbers you can see how ridiculous it was. The fight wasn't even close, I dominated him in every aspect. At the end of the fight he was taken to the hospital and I didn't even have one mark on my face, right there you know something isn't adding up. I was definitely upset and definitely down, but I am just focusing on my future now, and I know I have what it takes to be champion, and there isn't anything or anyone who is going to stop me from accomplishing that this year.
Q: Are you looking to send a message in this fight, if so what is it, and is it directed at anyone in particular?
DR: Yes I am looking to send a message to everyone in the welterweight division, and that message is that I am coming for you. All these so-called champions, they want to prove they are real champions then fight me. I have paid my dues, this is my time.
Q: Delvin want to thank you for taking time out of your training. Is there anything you want to say in closing?
DR: I want to thank my promoter Joe DeGuardia (Star Boxing) for putting this fight together and giving me an opportunity to defend my belt in front of my hometown fans at the Mohegan Sun. This is going to be a big year for me in 2010, starting with knocking out Arnaoutis on April 2nd. I hope everyone that can't make it to Mohegan Sun tunes in on ESPN because it's going to be a performance you definitely are not going to want to miss.
Doors open at 7PM with the first bout scheduled for 7:30PM. The first live televised bout goes on air at 9PM. Tickets are priced and available at $75, $45 and $30 and are on sale now. Tickets may be purchased by calling the Star Boxing office at (718) 823-2000. To find out more information about exclusive tickets please call Star Boxing at (718) 823-2000 or visit www.starboxing.com. Tickets may also be purchased through Ticketmaster. Ticketmaster customers may log on to ticketmaster.com or purchase tickets by calling 1-800-745-3000.
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