Interview With Edison "Pantera" Miranda
03.05.07 - by James Slater: Twenty-six year old Columbian born Edison Miranda is one hard man. Not only in the ring but out of it as well. His unbelievably tough childhood has been well documented - not only was Edison parentless for most of this childhood, but he had to work extremely hard in physical jobs while still barely a boy. This tough beginning helped make him the fighter he is today, however, and he believes the world title is his destiny.
Article posted on 04.05.2007
Currently in training in his new home of Puerto Rico for his fight on May 19th with the unbeaten Kelly Pavlik - a fight where a win will lead Edison to a second title shot - "Pantera" very kindly gave this writer the following interview ( through an interpreter).
James Slater: Firstly, how are preparations going for the Kelly Pavlik fight on May 19th?
Edison Miranda: Things are going excellent like always. I'm training very hard and will be in perfect shape both physically and mentally.
J.S: You beat the previously unbeaten Allan Greene last time out, but were knocked down on the way to the points win. How tough a fight was it, and how badly hurt were you by the knock down?
E.M: It was not nearly as tough a fight as the knock down suggested it was. First of all, I was dominating the fight all along. He did not come to fight and it made my night easy. As for the knockdown, he hit me flush but I was going back and was a bit off balance so because of this, I went down. If you noticed, I sprung right up, so the punch didn't affect me at all. All it did was make me angry and knock him down, which I did.
J.S: What type of fight do you expect from the unbeaten Pavlik?
E.M: I am sure Pavlik has a solid game plan coming into my fight. But then again, so did Allan Green. The problem is that when they feel my power in the 1st round, their game plan goes down the drain. If he decides to trade with me, he stands to get hurt. If he tries to box, then you will see something similar to the Green fight. I am prepared for anything.
J.S: Talking about your well documented tough childhood, is this what made you such a hard and fearless fighter/man?
E.M: I am a fearless boxer because of a gift from God. This is what I was supposed to be. Perhaps my rough childhood contributed to my mental toughness. All I know is that God has a path for everyone and mine is being the middleweight champ of the world, which is what I'm going to do.
J.S: From your childhood, who were your boxing heroes?
E.M: Muhammad Ali was my favorite. I watched every single one of his fights many times. To this day, I still watch his fights. He was the greatest.
J.S: Fighting in the middleweight division, one of the traditional weight classes - with former great champs like Hagler, Monzon etc. What will it mean to become the champion of the world?
E.M: It's very important for me to become champ. I will be a champ that everyone is proud of. One that fights tough from beginning to end. One that is exciting to watch. One that is willing to fight anyone.
J.S: In the title fight with Arthur Abraham, which was a brutal fight, do you feel as though you won?
E.M: I did win the fight. Not only on points, but also by TKO in the 5th. It was a robbery, but God has this planned for me. Positive things with HBO started to happen after this supposed loss as crazy as that might sound.
J.S: Abraham later called you a dirty fighter, how do you respond to this?
E.M: I do not consider myself a dirty fighter. There were many low blows that should not have been called. As for the head butt, I was trying to get out of his clinching and I was very frustrated. I learned from that and it won't happen again. I am a clean boxer.
J.S: Was the Abraham fight your toughest so far? If not, which fight was?
E.M: I don't look at any fights as tougher than any other. I am always fighting professional boxers and for every fight I will need to be prepared. As long as I do my job in the gym, there is nobody that can hurt or beat me. I feel that I easily won every fight I ever fought, even the robbery in Germany. So, as of now, I have not had a fight that I would consider the toughest.
J.S: I know you get great inspiration from God, do you feel it is your destiny to be a world champion?
E.M: Yes, God has a plan for everyone. Mine is boxing. He sent me this message in a dream when I was a homeless boy in the streets of Colombia. From that day on, I knew what I was set out to be.
J.S: Presuming you win on May 19th, who would you like to fight next?
E.M: Without any question, Jermain Taylor. He is the recognized champ. I pray that he is man enough to fight me after we both win on May 19th. The whole world wants this fight to happen - fans, media, promoters, managers, me. But he keeps running from me. I know it's safer to fight smaller guys, but at some point you need to have respect for the people that pay you (the fans) and do the fight thing by fighting the best - the best is Edison Pantera Miranda.
J.S: Would you ever consider moving up to super middleweight, and a fight with Joe Calzaghe, for instance?
E.M: I am willing to fight the best. I'd prefer to stay at middleweight, which is what I am and fight the best there which would be Taylor. But if that doesn't happen and the only opportunity for a big fight would be Calzaghe, I am more than willing to take the fight. Of course, I'd have to plan all this with my managers and promoter because jumping up in weight is a big decision.
J.S: Where do you see yourself in 12-18 month's time?
E.M: I see myself as the champ of the world. I will have defended the title a few times. But most importantly, I will have done my job and give boxing a shot in the arm by entertaining the world with my boxing skills and knockout power.
J.S: From the current world class fighters boxing today, are you particularly friendly with anyone?
E.M: I am friendly with many boxers out there. Some, of course, are closer than others. My trainer, Jose Bonilla, has a few other fighters he trains that I am very close with - Carlos Quintana, Jesus Pabon, and Jose Nieves. I am very close with them since I train with them regularly and run with them as well. They come to my fights and I go to their fights. I am close with several other fighters, specifically a few Colombians like Joan Guzman, Ricardo Torres, and Fulgencio Zuniga.
J.S: Finally, what prediction do you give for the Pavlik fight on the 19th?
E.M: I will go in there and execute what I practiced in the gym for so long. As long as I do that, I predict that Pavlik will get scared quickly. Remember, he has not fought anyone with my kind of power. He will be in for a big surprise. My boxing skills and power will wear him down and will set up a knockout. Expect to see Pavlik on his back at the end of the fight.
J.S: Thank you very much for your time, Edison.
E.M: Thank you and thanks to all my fans...I will never disappoint you!
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