GL: What can you tell us about your upcoming fight with Jesse Brinkley?
"Well, we don't like each other. I think it's the biggest fight on the contender that can made with all the animosity we have towards one another. I think it's clear we don't like each other and it's going to be an explosion. I'm going to beat him badly because there's never been anyone I've disliked so much that I would be able to hurt like this. This is going to be like Mayweather and Gatti all over. I'm going to be training to the point that I'm almost passing out in the gym. I'm going to camp with Joe (Goossen) this week and I'm just going to get ready to smash this guy."
GL: You recently told me Brinkley was a coward. Why do feel that word applies to him?
Ishe Smith: "Because in the second round, for people who watched the show, the winner of the challenge could pick somebody to fight or make a match between two other guys. He talked all the trash the day before, he gets up in the kitchen and steps up to me. I told him if you win the challenge pick me, he said the same thing to me and I said cool. Then he goes out there and tries with all his might to win the challenge and matches me with Sergio. That's a coward, he cowarded out and ended up to losing to Sergio also. He has no choice but to fight me now, but G, it's a good thing somebody else made this match for him because he would have never done it himself, that much is clear."
GL: With all the hype that went into the show, is a seven round fight on ESPN where you saw yourself at this point in time?
IS: "I'm happy about being a part of the show and it was a great experience. There's only one thing I want to be a part of, and that's a tournament to get to Sergio. With Peter Manfredo fighting Alfonso, as long as the winner of that fights the winner of me and Jesse to get to Sergio, I'm cool with that. Any champion wants to avenge his first loss. If it comes to having to fight all the guys who were on the show, that's where mixed emotions come in, because I want to be a world champion not a contender champion. Greatness can't be generated on television, so all of us are going to have to go back into the real boxing world to fight real people. I want to be world champion, the contender belt is great for the people who watch the show, but the real boxing people will say I never did anything if I don't fight some real champions. To get to Sergio Mora, I will do this, but after I beat Jesse if I don't get Mora or if the winner of Manfredo and Gomez gets to Mora first, I won't like that because then it will be like we're getting like certain promoters in the game that they never wanted to be like. Me and Sergio had a split decision and I should be next in line to fight him."
GL: Your last several fights have been 5-7 rounds. Are you concerned about becoming a 5-7 round fighter?
IS: (laughs) "It's funny, because a lot of my fights, even with Mora, I had him out in the last round...I'm the kind of guy that likes to come on late. I would have had Bonsante out with a few more rounds, but the guys who were going like six or seven before the show have a lot more to worry about than we do when we return to the real boxing world. Other than me and Peter, I think most of the guys were six round fighters, so that's going to have to be something that they worry about. When round five comes, I'm getting warmed up. Seven rounds is nothing and I could do that in my sleep. Me and Joe are going twelve in the gym so it's nothing to me. I don't know if that'll be the case for these other guys. Like I said though, television can't create greatness, in time the people will all know who the best fighter on that show was."
GL: Will this fight with Brinkley go the distance?
IS: "It won't go the distance. I would be very disappointed if it went the distance. I'm going to smash him for every second of every round. He's not in my league and I'm going to show him that in his next fight. All I want you to do G, is pick me up a Gucci pillow because I'm going to put him to bed in style!"
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