Peter “The Pride of Providence” Manfredo Jr. is Leaving It All on the Line on November 19th against Julio Caesar Chavez Jr.
James Stillerman: Peter “The Pride of Providence” Manfredo Jr. will try to obtain the WBC middleweight world title when he takes on Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. at the Reliant Arena in Houston, Texas in a 12 round fight. Manfredo Jr. 37-6, 20KOs ranked number four by the WBC is coming into this fight winning six in row and has won nine of his last ten bouts. Chavez Jr. won the WBC title over Sebastian Zbik in his last fight and has never lost in his 44 bouts, 30 of which he won by knockout. I talked with Manfredo and got his thoughts on his fight with Chavez Jr., what he needs to do to prevail, why this fight means some much to him and much more..
Article posted on 17.11.2011
James Stillerman: What does this fight with Julio Caesar Chavez Jr. mean to you?
Peter Manfredo Jr.: I am extremely humble and excite about this upcoming fight with Julio Caesar Chavez Jr. Ever since I started boxing at seven I have always dreamed of being a world title holder and now at 31 my dream is within my grasp. I am happy I am getting one last shot at a world title fight, especially for the WBC which is the best of all the major belts to fight for. This is going to be great fight for all boxing fans because they will see two evenly matched fighters go after one another in a nonstop action packed bout.
James Stillerman: How has training been for this fight?
Peter Manfredo Jr.: Training camp has been great and I am peaking at the right time. I am wrapping up sparring this Thursday and then we will be going to Houston, Texas where we will make the final preparations. Julio Caesar Chavez Jr. better be ready for me because he is going to see the best Manfredo, boxing has ever seen.
James Stillerman: Is it true that if you lose this fight you will retire?
Peter Manfredo Jr.: Yes it is true. I love the sport of boxing but I also love my family and I have three kids nine, six, and four and it is difficult to see them growing up and not being there through their childhood. I work full time for Labor Union 271, box full time and so it does not leave much time to be at home with my children. Boxing has treated me well and I have made a great deal lot of money from it, however if I cannot win this fight it will not be worth it for me to stay in the sport. If I lose it will be extremely difficult for me to obtain a significant fight in the future and with my other job I do not need to box to make a living anymore.
James Stillerman: What will be the keys to prevail over Chavez Jr.?
Peter Manfredo Jr.: I know I am in for a great fight because Chavez Jr. is young, undefeated and is a world title holder. However, if I box well, display good defense and be much more aggressive than I have in my last two world title fights, I will be victorious. I believe my experience and with fighting the much better opposition and in bigger venues over my career will also give me the edge in this fight. I have fought several fighters who have fought or won world titles such Joe Calzaghe, Jeff Lacy, Sakio Bika, Sergio Mora, Alfonso Gomez among others. I have also fought in front of 35,000 people in Wales when I boxed Calzaghe and I boxed on the Contender which was broadcasted in the homes of millions of individuals. All of these factors will help me defeat Chavez Jr.
James Stillerman: What have you learned from your last two world title loss that will help you prevail in this fight?
Peter Manfredo Jr.: The main reason I lost these world title fights to Calzaghe and Bika was because both of these fights were at the super middleweight division (168 pounds) and those boxers were just too big and strong for me. I did not belong in that division, but the only significant fights I could obtain was in that weight class, so I had to take those fights.
Now, I am fighting in the middleweight division (160 pounds) which is the correct division for me and the fighters are more my size and my punching power has more of an effect on my opponents and, thus far I have done much better in this weight class as I have won six in a row and nine of my last ten fights.
James Stillerman: What was it like to acquire the IBO world title after beating Angel Hernandez and garnering the NABF title after defeating Matt Vanda?
Peter Manfredo Jr.: It felt great to be back on top of my game. I had early success in my career beating Ian Gardner, Grady Brewer, Sherwin Davis, Frankie Randall who beat Chavez Sr. although he was much older at the time and Charles Clark. I won a great deal in my early part of my career and was picking up major regional belts and now I am slowly getting back to where I was before the Contender show. It has been a long road back after losing to Lacy, Calzaghe and Bika; however I have been a nice roll of late and my steak will continue against Chavez Jr. It would mean everything to me to capture the WBC title over Chavez Jr. and become finally a world title holder.
James Stillerman: I know you like to fight often so what has been the reason you have been inactivity for almost eight months with your last fight being in January?
Peter Manfredo Jr.: Lou Dibella my promoter has been promising me significant fights ever since I signed him and until this fight I have not had one. I have been offered a couple of bouts this year but I would be fighting for no money. I am not going to take a fight when I am risking my health and career and still I will be making less money than I would make at my union job. It has been frustrating for me because I like to fight, however it is part of the business and it does not matter now because I finally have my significant fight.
James Stillerman: Any closing thoughts or anything you want to discuss that I did not talk about?
Peter Manfredo Jr.: I am extremely happy about this fight and everything is going really well leading up to it. This is an extremely evenly matched fight with two great fights and it is going to be an absolute war where both of us like to throw punches and come after their opponents. The fans are going to be the real winners for this fight because it is going to be an all action fight. Hopefully my career does not end on November 19th, yet if it does I will have no regrets. I want to thank all of my fans who have stuck with me through the good times and bad times and I just to let them know you are going to see the best Manfredo ever and I am coming to win this fight and bring the WBC world title belt back to Providence, Rhode Island.
A special thanks to Peter Manfredo for taking time out of his busy training camp to answer my questions and to Kevin Rooney Jr. from Dibella Entertainment and Bob Trieger for facilitating this interview.
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