Boxing heavies weigh-in

By Rea Frey


Boxing heavies weigh-in

Wladimir Klitshcko and Calvin Brock are preparing to fight each other for the IBF heavyweight championship. On a conference call Wednesday, they discussed their upcoming bout, which scheduled for November 11 at New York’s Madison Square Garden. Klitshcko spoke about his plans to defeat the undefeated Brock.



Brock, who was on the 2000 U.S. Olympic boxing team and has gone 29-0 as a professional, was succinct in his conversation and spoke about everyone’s inability to believe in him – to believe that he would be such a contender in the heavyweight division. “When I first came out of the 2000 Olympics, I was the last to come out of my twelve man team. I was the least likely to succeed. Losing my very last amateur boxing match just gave me a bad stigma about turning professional. I knew this day would come where I would become undefeated though. To take an amateur team and label them before they’re even given a chance is downright ignorant. Unfortunately in boxing a lot of people believe what they hear. Teddy Atlas said I didn’t have punching power; that I would always be just a prospect. Obviously I had to have that hard work ethic to go into the pros and get my record of 29-0 with 22 knockouts.”


He then turned his attention to his opponent. “I think I’m a busier boxer, more versatile than Wladimir. I think I can take a tougher boxing match than Wladimir- that will enable me to beat him. I see that he has a good jab, and a good right hand but none of that is something I haven’t been in the ring with before and overcome. I will win and my predictions have always come out correct, 100% of the time. I think I’m the best in the world because I prepare to win.”


Wladimir Klitshcko and Emmanuel Steward wrapped up the conference call, with Manny commenting on training camp first. “Well, you know. Training camp is going great. Wladimir trains very hard, harder than any boxer I’ve ever been involved with. He’ll do two, two and a half workouts a day, which is a lot. His conditioning is great and we are looking forward to going to New York for the final few days before the fight.”


Klitshcko then spoke about Brock. “Of course, he’s in great confidence. He’s young. He wants to be the champion of the world. It’s his chance to become the champion. I don’t want to underestimate Calvin Brock at all. I do expect him to be going forward, going backwards. It’s not so easy to hit him and to hurt him because of his defense. That’s what boxing is about. You have to have a strategy or a plan. Of course I will take any opportunity to finish the fight as soon as possible but I am ready for it to go the distance. I will take any single opportunity to finish the fight as early as possible.”


Klitshcko made a comment about Brock rising from a knockdown and what strong character that showed. One reporter asked about his own experiences with knockdowns and losses and Klitshcko responded honestly. “Of the age of 27, the first time I really got hurt was from Corrie Sanders. It actually was a new experience for me. This is all about sports and as a football player, basketball player, you can win, you can lose, the next day you can win again. Boxing is different. Each loss really takes you back. But you have to be tough enough to analyze what were your mistakes and get back and accomplish your goals in sports. My goal is to be the champion. I don’t see myself as the real champion because there are three other guys holding belts. All my bumps in my sports career helped me to be a complete person in my private life.” 


When asked what would make him feel like a real champion, he said, “It’s not about the belts. It’s about the belt holders, the personality behind the belts. I do respect these guys. I see my next fight not as a championship fight. I’m looking for people behind these titles. I would like to fight them. That’s why it makes me kind of feel better to fight the person. It’s not only about the titles. Calvin Brock is my future right now. I used to work with different trainers and I’m appreciative for all of them. I got experience from them. Right now, working with Emmanuel Steward, it’s the peak of everything I was looking for. I think he is a genius. He’s not pushing me to do this or that – he respects my experience. We make a combination between his experience and my experience. It’s a creative experience – it’s our work. I really, really enjoy it.”


Emmanuel commented. “I think one of the things is I respect the fighters. Guys have to have something going for them to have all those accomplishments. In Wladimir’s case, he’s been a star boxer since he was 14. Having a tremendous professional career, even with two losses. It happens in life. Just because it rains in LA two days in a row doesn’t mean it’s a rainy state. He’s a very intelligent man. He’s been a top athlete all of his life. His experience on nutrition and life in general… There’s some things that I wanted him to change. In Russia, there’s a lot of gymnastics type things, and not enough time in the ring. We’ve spent more time in the ring. Not only does he like to box for 9 or 10 rounds now, he’s become extremely comfortable in the ring. He’s cut back on a lot of excessive exercises. He may be the most effective big man in history and can explode in and out with power. He may become the best controlling heavyweight and make his opponent fight the way he wants him to fight.”


As far as predictions? “It doesn’t matter when and how,” Klitshcko said. “I am going to finish the fight as the champion. Right now my statement is Calvin Brock and that’s it.”