Sheika says Lacy avoiding him for HBO date

By Jake Emen


Sheika says Lacy avoiding him for HBO date

In 2004, Omar Sheika lost a competitive IBF super middleweight title challenge to Jeff Lacy, a bout that two judges scored 115-113 for Lacy and the third 117-111 for Lacy. According to Sheika, either Lacy or Lacy’s people don’t want to give Sheika a rematch even though the opportunity is there. Boxingtalk spoke with Omar Sheika to get his side of the story.

BT: What’s on your mind Omar?
Sheika: Nothin, nothing, we’re trying to get this fight done, the rematch with Jeff Lacy on December 2nd on HBO, on the Winky Wright date. So, we’re just working on that, and everything looks like it’s a go with HBO, but basically it looks like he doesn’t want to fight me I guess. He’s saying he wants to fight somebody else. He’s looking for easy opponents, but we’re ready for the challenge. Ya know, everybody knows the first fight was real close. A lot of people thought I beat him. He wants the easy way out, guys that are nobodies, guys that he can beat. I’m telling him I’m willing to take the challenge to him on December 2nd, I’m sure everybody will want to see that fight again.

BT: Did HBO approve you as the opponent?
Sheika: My people told me that HBO would accept the fight. But, I believe he’s looking for an easier fighter. I don’t believe HBO would approve anybody that doesn’t qualify.

BT: So basically you want to call Jeff Lacy out?
Sheika: He’s calling out Calzaghe for a rematch, he’s saying he wishes he can fight Calzaghe for a rematch… Calzaghe almost killed him (laughs) and everybody thought I beat him. So ya know, I’m saying fight me. He’s scared to fight me. He’s probably just talking shit just to say it. Everybody knows Calzaghe won’t give him a rematch.

BT: What’d you think about that fight anyways?
Sheika:  I thought like everybody else that Calzaghe had an easy time with him. I thought Calzaghe would beat him, styles make fights. Lacy is just a good fighter, just a powerful fighter, that’s it. Styles make fights and that’s why I’m willing to fight him again. I believe I showed the blueprint to Calzaghe on how to beat Lacy. Ya know, I believe I beat him the first time – everybody thought I did.

BT: Why the long layoff since your last fight?
Sheika:  I had surgery on my elbow, and my hand was giving me problems. I just wanted to be able to cover everything, get healthy and come back. I believe I’ve been off for a little bit, he’s been off for a while, so it would be a good fight.

BT: Now, have you heard about the potential fight between Peter Manfredo and Roy Jones?
Sheika: I read something about it. To be honest with you... Manfredo is another guy we had almost a lock deal to fight against him… now he wants to go against this guy Joey Spina. These fighters… he’s fighting nobodies… who’s Spina? Who’s Lacy trying to go after now? Nobody.  I’m a warrior man. I’ll fight anybody. I’m willing to take challenges man. I fought the best out there. I had some bad luck with injuries, but you know I fought them all.
I’m willing to face Lacy, I’m willing to fight Manfredo. Now he’s trying to fight Spina, Roy Jones…I don’t know what the possible chances of that are, but ya know that’s not my concern. My concern is that he ducked me. We were supposed to fight, we had 2 possible dates, me and Manfredo. Now he’s fighting Spina. He has no respect for me. In my eyes He’s a punk. I’ve said that before if he wants to step up he has to fight tough fighters and real opponents. Show the public that these guys are really made up of what they say they are. Lacy is the same thing. He’s going around, trying to say he wants Calzaghe. I want the people to know I’m willing to fight him again, and this time I’ll knock him out. I don’t believe he wants to take that chance with me.

BT: So you’re telling me you will knock out Jeff Lacy if you fight him again?
Sheika: Definitely.

BT: If we don’t see you back in the ring with Lacy though, when can we see you back in action?
Sheika: To tell you the truth, if you don’t see me back in the ring with Lacy it’s because he’s ducking me and he’s a punk. That’s the honest truth. Everything is a go, just waiting on him to take the fight. That’s all I’m waiting on. The networks can’t allow him to fight bums anymore. They want to see him step up. I believe it’s a good fight for HBO, a good fight for the public; it’s a good fight for me and him.

BT: What can we expect from you in 2007, after this possible Lacy fight?
Sheika: Hopefully, after this I’ll be in contention for a world title. I want to fight the best out there. I’m at a point where I want to fight people that make sense for me. I could fight 3 or 4 bums on ESPN, or fight nobodies but what’s that going to prove for me? It’ll make me look good but what’s that going to prove to me?  My thing is, I want to fight the guys that people believe that I can’t beat, or you know who the people believe will be a tough fight. That’s the challenges that wake me up.

BT: What do you tell your critics who say, you are coming off two straight losses, so you doesn’t deserve a shot. What would you tell them?
Sheika: To be honest, my two losses were against two champions [Lacy, who had the IBF title when they fought, and WBC titlist Marcus Beyer]. Against Lacy, who everybody thought was a very tough fight. It was a close fight and a lot of people thought I beat him. Against Beyer, let’s be honest in Germany…you can’t win overseas. It’s not like I lost to two bums or two people who knocked me out. I lost two decisions which I thought I pulled it off. But that’s boxing. You’re in Germany, with no TV, out there fighting against the champion; it’ll be hard to walk away with the belt for anybody.

What do you have to say to your fans on Boxingtalk?
Sheika: Hopefully you see me back on December 2nd against Jeff Lacy. I wanted to say, I don’t even know if his people told him. I know my attorney, Mike Borao, spoke to one of Lacy’s representatives… and I don’t even know if they relayed the message to him that I wanted to fight him. I don’t even know if he got the message or if they are just hiding from it, or if they are scared to fight me or I really don’t know. So I wanted to let everybody know I am willing to fight Jeff Lacy on December 2nd.



Send questions and comments to: