Joan Guzman-Michael Katsidis-Oscar Larios Quotes
19.04.07 - Photos: Rob DeLorenzo/Golden Boy Promotions - The only boxer from the Dominican Republic to win world titles in two weight classes will try to make it three when current WBO lightweight champion and former WBO 122-pound kingpin Joan Guzman (27-0, 17 KOs) steps up in weight to challenge fellow unbeaten and interim WBO lightweight titleholder Michael Katsidis (22-0, 20 KOs) on Saturday, May 26, 2007, at The Arena at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, Calif. In the co-feature, undefeated Jorge Linares (23-0, 14 KOs) and ex-WBC 122-pound champ Oscar Larios (59-5-1, 37 KOs) collide for the vacant WBC featherweight belt.
Tickets for “Relentless” are priced at $100, $65, $45 and $25 and go on sale Thursday, April 19, at The Arena at the Anaheim Convention Center, Ticketmaster Charge-By-Phone (714) 740-2000, online at www.ticketmaster.com and at all participating Ticketmaster retail locations.
HBO Boxing After Dark will televise the doubleheader beginning at 10:30 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the west coast). Golden Boy Promotions, in association with Sycuan Ringside Promotions, Rockstar Energy Drink and Tecate will present the event..
“I want to thank all the fans for their continued support and thank everyone involved for making this fight. This is the kind of fight that boxing needs and that the fans won’t want to miss.
“I am moving up in weight because I want to be a world champion in three different weight classes, and there are not too many of those. I am also moving up because I am a fighter. I am willing to get in the ring with anybody, but there was no one else for me to fight.
“This is a dangerous fight, but I like challenges and have never turned one down. It could be the most grueling fight of my career, but 2007 is going to be a breakout year for me.
“I know Katsidis is coming to win and will be in great shape. He is a tremendous offensive fighter, but I am not sure about his defense, or if he cares much about his defense.
“He may be naturally bigger, but I do not think he will be able to deal with my speed. The plan is to give him angles and nail him with punches he doesn’t see.
“But this is a real fight on May 26, no doubt about that.’’
“This is my third time in the United States, but my first fight. I have waited a long time for this opportunity and am over the moon excited about it. This is truly a dream come true for me.
“I give Guzman a ton of credit. He is truly a great champion with tremendous talent. He brings a lot to the table and has a ton of experience. He is the one willing to step up in weight.
“If Guzman wants to come forward and fight, that would be great for me. But I will be ready for anything. I am already in top shape, and making 135 in no problem whatsoever. I have been fighting 16 ½ years, and I am always on weight. I am very disciplined.
“Couple Guzman’s style with mine and this can’t be anything but a great fight for the fans. I am really looking forward to it.
“This is my chance to make a name in America. That has been my goal since I watched my first “Rocky’’ movie as a kid. I am extremely confident I will make the best of it. I can’t wait for May 26.’’
“I am very excited about this fight. It is the biggest of my career. But there is a lot of pressure: one win and I stay in the picture; one loss and I am out of the picture, so you know I will be ready.
“I am the mandatory challenger to the WBC champion (Injin Chi), but the Korean keeps making excuses not to fight me. So my total focus now is on Linares, who is a young, tall, exciting puncher who I have a lot of respect for. I know him well. We both trained in the same gym for fights when we were in Tokyo.
“A lot of people may think my best days are behind me, but I do not care what they think. I still feel good and feel stronger fighting at featherweight. Making 126 pounds will not be a problem.
“Linares has never been in with anybody like me. I am not afraid to fight anybody, anywhere. I fought Manny Pacquiao in the Philippines in front of 18,000 fans so that should tell you something.’’
Article posted on 19.04.2007
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