Hercules, Achilles, Odysseus, Persius and “Mighty” Mike, what do these three men have in common? Well for one they are all Greek champions. However “Mighty” Mike is the only one who has never had his exploits covered by the legendary laureate Homer. Also unlike the previous four warriors mentioned “Mighty” Mike is no myth he is real and on October 22nd he has plans of showing the boxing world that he in his own right is a legend in the making.
Born Michalis Arnaoutis in Athens, Greece the 140lb prospect known as “Mighty” Mike Arnaoutis will be in the main event as part of the latest installment of Showtime’s boxing series Shobox. Arnaoutis has an extensive and very decorated amateur past. He compiled a brilliant record of 103 wins with 7 defeats. An Olympic experience was not to be however according to his representative Mike Michaels, The crooked and ugly politics, which dominate amateur boxing, were the culprits behind this.
“It would have been a waste of time, so we decided to bring him to America,” stated Michaels.
Chumash Casino, in Santa Ynez, California will be the venue when Arnaoutis meets Jessie Feliciano. The two men are set to battle 12 rounds with the vacant NABO Junior Welterweight title on the line. Arnaoutis, who owns a record of 10-0-2 with 4 knockouts, is no stranger to the big lights of television despite his slim pro resume. In Arnaoutis’s last outing on August 5th he fought undefeated Juan Urango to a majority draw on Shobox. It was a decision that does not sit well with the members of team Arnaoutis of which includes his very vocal interpreter and consultant Mike Michaels.
“We were given a raw deal that night, everyone knows Mike clearly won that fight. We took it to him in his own backyard and he received a hometown decision,” stated Michaels.
Michaels’ works for the London based Cestus Management group, which is the management company of “Mighty” Mike. Michaels also serves as the chief consultant to the 25-year-old Athenian southpaw. Arnaoutis shares the same opinion of his interpreter in regards to his last fight.
“I don’t understand a draw. I had a bad feeling for a long time. I threw 2000 punches that night. I don’t understand how it could have been scored a draw, but I’ve put that behind me and I understand that it is part of the sport. This is a new story, no more mistakes”, stated Arnaoutis.
Arnaoutis is set to leave no doubts in his bout against the rugged 22 year old Feliciano, who is coming off a devastating TKO loss at the hands of outstanding former gold medallist Mahamat Abdulaev. Feliciano brings a record of 12 wins with 7 K.O’s with 2 losses and 2 draws. Despite Feliciano’s big punch reputation, Arnaoutis is not the least bit impressed by his impending rival. In fact he is quite dismissive on Feliciano being any threat at all.
“I watched a tape of him and I do not know where he learned how to fight? He throws wild punches.” I look at Feliciano and I see he looks strong, and comes in good shape but he is nothing special,” said Arnaoutis.
“There is no way he can beat me. I really don’t know what he is but he is no boxer,” said Arnaoutis.
With a win Michaels feels that “Mighty” Mike will instantly crack the top 10 in the WBO and it will be a small but significant step towards a world title, the World Boxing Organizaiton currently ranks him at 15 in the world.
“We are not taking Feliciano lightly we take everyone seriously, Feliciano is just out of his league. His face first style is tailor made for Mike. He is going to whip this boys ass,” said Michaels.
“I train hard for everyone I fight and I treat them like if they are a world champion. I am just confident in myself,” said Arnaoutis.
“I have no doubt that he will be champion. He has the right people behind him looking after him and taking care of him and he has all the tools to be a huge star in this sport. He is charismatic, good looking and he can just plain fight,” said Michaels.
“He has the balls of an elephant and a granite chin!” stated Michaels.
Arnaoutis style in the ring completely goes against the stereotypical European style of fighters that the world is used to seeing. Bill Johnson, is the head trainer for Arnaoutis and is also the father of lightweight contender Levander Johnson. Johnson is the man responsible for harboring and trying to maximize “Mighty” Mike’s skills. Arnaoutis is already blessed with un-teachable attributes; he stands 5 foot 10 and from a left-handed stance brings an imposing physical presence that is uncommon in the junior welterweight division. The question remains how rapidly will this precocious young man’s progression unfold. Advisor Michaels feels that Arnaoutis is on the cusp of greatness. If all goes as designed for team Arnaoutis a shot against Michael “No Joke Stewart” would be the next stepping stone for him.
“We were in training camp with Stewart for his bout against Sharmba Mitchell and “Mighty” Mike whipped him constantly during their sparring sessions. I would love to take Stewart the next time out for Mike,” stated Michaels.
Mike Michaels sees no ceiling to the career “Mighty” Mike Arnaoutis and feels that he is the true blue chip prospect out of all “Mighty” Mike’s contemporary junior welterweights.
“Paul Malignaggi does not deserve to be in the same ring with Mike. Michael Warrick is mediocre at best,” stated Michaels.
“A rematch with Urango would be great it was the first time Mike went 12 rounds it was the first time he went past 6 rounds, that is the only reason Urango lasted. The next time out with some more body work I have no doubt that not only would Mike win a rematch but he would stop him easily, Urango is a very limited fighter,” said Michaels.
Boxingtalk would like to thank “Mighty” Mike Arnaoutis and Mike Michaels for their time and continued success.
CLICK HERE FOR MORE OF THIS EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW
Send questions and comments to: SPJR21@YAHOO.COM