Boxing


Hunter: Froch doesn't have a clue about what he's facing in Ward

Carl FrochNEW YORK (Dec. 5, 2011) – Less than two weeks from one of the most important fights in the history of the super middleweight division, the trainers for world champions Andre Ward (World Boxing Association) and Carl Froch (World Boxing Council) are brimming with confidence as training camp begins to wind down.

Virgil Hunter: “Froch Really Doesn’t Have a Clue What He’s Getting Into.”

Rob McCracken: “…Carl Has Done More in the Division than Ward…”

The eagerly awaited inaugural Super Six World Boxing Classic Final is slated for Saturday, Dec. 17, at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, N.J., live on SHOWTIME® (9 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast).

Says Virgil Hunter, who trains Ward (24-0, 13 KOs), of Oakland, Calif.: “We’re real pleased with how it’s all going in camp. We never actually left. We had a setback (after Ward was cut on Sept. 22), but we never stopped. We just modified things when we couldn’t spar. We’ve been sparring for about three weeks.

“I haven’t seen any difference at all with Andre; there’s been no noticeable drop off for anything.

He’s the same now as he was before the cut. He understands the nature of game.

“We’re just determined to win in a dominant fashion. That’s what we focus on. It’s not personal. We just want to win, and that’s what we plan to do.’’

Offers Rob McCracken, who handles Froch (28-1, 20 KOs), of Nottingham, England: “Carl’s camp has been fantastic. He’s just an exceptional worker and will carry out whatever you want from him every day. He never questions anything. He doesn’t have weight issues; he has the genetics to do that, and very few in the sport can say that.

“We’d worked 10 weeks before the cut, but then took a three-week break. So we will have had nine more solid weeks of camp going in. That’s quite a bit of training, but the three weeks off refreshed him. A similar thing happened when he fought Arthur Abraham, and Carl came back sharper than ever.

“Ward pulled out because of a cut. That’s part of boxing, and Carl knows that. But this is a personal fight.’’

Both Hunter and McCracken have had lengthy relationships with their boxers – who represent each trainer’s top client. The insightful Hunter, who’s also Ward’s godfather, has coached the boxer since he was nine years old. He was with Ward during the run to the 2004 Olympic Games gold medal and has been there every step of the way since.

The respected McCracken, a former British champion and world title challenger at 160 pounds, is the current head of the UK Olympic team. Froch, who often works with the amateurs, has been with McCracken for more than 10 years.

Some industry experts consider Ward a slight favorite to defeat the confident Froch and win the high-stakes 12-round bout for the WBA and WBC titles, vacant The Ring magazine championship and the Super Six World Boxing Classic Cup. But, as always, Ward will enter the ring with something to prove and taking nothing for granted.

“Andre always fights with a chip on his shoulder, but it’s a healthy chip and it’s what fuels and motivates him,’’ Hunter said. “One minute you’re the best in the world, the next minute you’re not. Just the criticism alone is something he has no control over, but it’s enough to motivate him continuously.

“He has his dreams, he has his goals, and until he hangs ‘em up he’ll be motivated. It’s just the type of kid he is. He’ll never be in a situation where he’ll not be motivated because when the tournament is over they will have somebody else for him to fight. Or there will be someone else where they say maybe this guy will be a good test, or that guy will be a good test.

“The way Andre is winning right now, no one seems to think he’s being tested. So if there is a test out there, we welcome it and we’re ready for it.”

Chip or no chip, McCracken believes Froch is the real deal and the one to beat.

“Carl trained with me nine months before his first pro fight and before that I watched him in the 2001 World Championships,’’ McCracken said. “While Carl was becoming the first English boxer to win a medal at the World Championships, I could see the raw talent and that he had all the ingredients.

“Carl and Ward have pretty much proved themselves as the two best; well, Carl definitely has and Ward, who won an Olympic gold medal, is the other best super middleweight in the world alongside Carl.

“But Carl has done more in the division than Ward has.”

So, who’s going to win?

“Andre’s biggest key is that he has the element of surprise,’’ Hunter said. “Froch really doesn’t have a clue what he’s getting into. He just doesn’t know. He’s on the outside looking in. It’ll be interesting to see when he finds out. Then, we’ll adjust accordingly to whatever his intent is.

“Andre is determined. He has a family, and he wants to be great, which is enough stimulation to put everything he has into winning this fight.

“I don’t think that you could ask for a better conclusion. It’s going to be a great fight and I’m looking forward to it. Froch is a confident fighter who has passionate fans. He’s the type of fighter you want to fight. He says he’ll keep pushing the petal to the metal and I think he’s a man of his word. I’d be very disappointed if he tucks it in, after what he’s been saying.

“We’ve worked hard to win this tournament and we intend to win the tournament. We’re now at the point where we have one more obstacle to overcome. It doesn’t matter if it’s a knockout or a decision. We want the KO if it comes, or a stoppage. Personally, I’d like to see him quit or his corner stop it.’’

Says McCracken: “The reality at this level of fight is intriguing because no one knows for sure how it will play out. We’ll both have game plans and we’ll both try to come out and implement them. But there will be points in the fight where they’ll have to fight on instincts.

“Ward is unorthodox, very fast and very talented. He will only do one of two things. He’ll try to go in and out or try and bull himself inside.

“Carl has the longer reach and is physically stronger. He knows he has to be smartly aggressive. He’s proven himself time and again, against everybody’s he’s been in with. Carl will be ready for anything. He’ll adjust when necessary and do whatever it takes to win.

“But we're expecting a fantastic fight between two tremendous boxers.’’

The event, originally scheduled for Oct. 29 at Boardwalk Hall, will be promoted by Goossen Tutor Promotions, Matchroom Sport and Antonio Leonard Promotions, in association with Caesars Atlantic City and sponsored by Corona.

Tickets are on sale at the Boardwalk Hall box office or by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 736-1420 or online at ticketmaster.com. All tickets purchased for the original event date will be honored on Dec. 17. If ticket holders are not able to attend on Dec. 17, refunds are available at the point of purchase. The non-televised undercard begins at 6 p.m. ET.

DECORATED PHILADELPHIA AMATEUR BOXER DAMON ALLEN SETS RECORD STRAIGHT DRUG BAN

PHILADELPHIA (December 5, 2011)—This past week it was announced that prized Philadelphia Amateur Damon Allen was banned by USADA (United States Anti Doping Agency) for using a banned substance during competition.

Allen, nineteen years old wanted to set the record straight on the circumstances surrounding the suspension.

“I had a swollen hand and my grandmother gave me a water pill and I looked on the website Globaldro.com to make sure it was safe to take the anti-inflammatory. Water pills were not on the banned substance list but the correct name was Furosimide.” said Allen

Unfortunately it came up in a test and USADA suspended Allen.

Allen was looking at a two year ban.

“The fact that I was honest and forthright with my situation and have a sworn affidavit, USADA cut the suspension”

The ban started on September 1st and Allen can then return to active competition on March 1st, 2012

Allen has a record of 110-9 and was a Silver Medalist at the 2010 Golden Gloves; 2011 Bronze Medal winner at the United States championship and is going to compete in the Olympic Qualifying Tournament.

Michael 'The Brazilian Rocky' Oliveira Continues Boxing Education Next fight Dec. 17 vs. Jimmy Holmes in Quebec City

MIAMI (Dec. 5, 2011) - His boxing education continues in Miami as undefeated prospect Michael "The Brazilian Rocky" Oliveira, rated No. 15 by the World Boxing Council ("WBC"), prepares for his first fight in Canada on December 17 against veteran Jimmy "The Fightin' School Teacher" Holmes (19-3-2, 10 KOs) in a 10-round Special Middleweight Attraction at Pepsi Coliseum in Quebec City.

The 21-year-old Oliveira (16-0, 12 KOs), a native of Brazil, is the reigning WBC South American middleweight champion. The handsome college student (Florida International U.) will be working with head trainer Orlando Cuellar for only their third fight.

Coming off of his victorious ShoBox debut Nov. 11 in El Paso (TX), in which he defeated veteran Xavier "The X-Man" Tolliver (23-8, 15 KOs) by way of an eight-round disqualification that was on the brink of knockout, Oliveira will be fighting Dec. 17 for the second time within five weeks.

"We wanted to put him back in the ring as soon as possible to keep him sharp and learning as he steps up the ladder of competition," said Cuellar, who is best known as former world champion Glen Johnson's chief second. "He came out of his last fight in good shape, no cuts even though he was head-butted a few times, in what was pretty much a one-sided beating in Michael's favor. He came right back to the gym a few days after that fight. We all talked - me, Michael and Carlos (father and promoter Carlos Oliveira) - about fighting again and decided to take advantage of this opportunity in Quebec City. We're on a roll and, when you're hot, you're hot.

"In training camp we've continued to pay attention to tightening his defense, keeping his left up, and threading the needle - timing his punches - to keep improving as an all-around boxer-puncher. Michael's a very good listener. His physical conditioning is just as good as it was for his last fight. Another reason we're able to come right back is he's only 21 and doesn't have any vices. I've brought in a slew of good sparring partners for him in order to appropriate adjustments in the ring. Michael's still very much a work in progress. Even though we have a big fight in May against Acelino Freitas in Brazil, we don't look past anybody, and always prepare accordingly for each fight."

The 5' 8" Oliveira will be facing a much taller opponent in the 6' 1" Holmes, a former Indiana State middleweight champion, who will have also have a decisive height advantage.

"We wanted to fight a guy who can give is work," Cuellar explained the decision to fight a much taller and experienced Holmes. "Michael's definitely going to fight taller guys with superior reaches, so why not fight Holmes? We're always preparing for any style because anything can happen like a much different opponent could be a last minute replacement for the opponent we've prepared weeks for. Part of preparing is watching tapes and talking a lot, but adjustments in and out of the ring are always needed."

Cuellar jokingly said Michael has been attending the Sunshine Boxing College with classes led by Professor Orlando. "This camp has been a continuation of his learning process," Cuellar noted. "Michael is being prepared to fight guys who are tall or short, quick or powerful, movers and shakers, boxers and punchers. He has to be ready to fight all styles in this diverse sport of boxing.

"For him, boxing is like being a student. Let's compare his learning experience in boxing, for example, to math. The first quarter may be multiplication, then division in the next, the third quarter he advances to algebra, and then it's on to trigonometry. He does his homework, takes some practice tests, and then he's ready for finals. In math, like boxing, as long as he received the right information and processes it correctly, he's going to be able to calculate the problem and get a good grade at the end of the year."

Oliveira got an A in his last test with his next exam Dec. 17 in Quebec City. Finals are still off in the future, possibly in May against Freitas, along with graduate school course before Oliveira, a physical therapy major, is ready for his doctorate work against world-class opponents. In reality, experiencing only two amateur fights, Oliveria's boxing education has just started.

Go to www.MichaelOliveira.com for more information about this exciting, young fighter.

Iain “The” Butcher looking to carve up another victory at Cleland Christmas Show!

After making a successful start in the paid ranks,Motherwell s Iain Butcher, is looking forward to impressing the audience again in his second pro fight on Friday Night at the Cleland Miners.

After scoring a points victory on his début,and a knock down on of opponent Anwar Alfadli .The fight was also featured on Sky Sports 'Ringside' but Butcher admits he was happy with his pro début,but did see it as a learning curve “ My first fight ,I thought it went really well I enjoyed getting the knock down in the first round, however I didn’t feel I settled into a rhythm after the knock down and its the first time getting a knock down in the pros but its a learning experience for me and I did get the victory”

In making the switch to the paid ranks, like any new boxer Butcher explains he has had to make slight changes to his training, but is using the changes to his advantage “My training has changed slightly to suit the pro's,im doing a lot more sparring and roadwork . I have started learning to sit down on my punches to hurt people rather then just pick up a point which is what your thought to do in the amatuers. I do also find that while im training harder im also setting a high pace in my training.”

Butcher, further adds about Fridays fight “I am looking forward to it, I’m glad to be fighting so quickly after my début. I am taking on Welshman Darren Pryce ,but I don’t plan to change too much from the Alfadi fight. I just need to find my distance as soon as possible and find out what hes got to offer and take it from there really! This time I will settle better and earlier in the fight and keep composed. I believe i will come out there again with another win!”

Iain butcher, along with Chris Steel and Kris Hughes takes part in Propspect Boxing'snext show on Friday 9th December at Cleland Miners Club.Tickets are priced £30 and this includes a buffet and a comedian. For more details are available from www.prospectboxing.co.uk or calling 01698 338 888. Also you can follow Prospect on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ProspectBoxing or Twitter @prospectboxing

Article posted on 06.12.2011



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