Seth Mitchell: ďIíve never been hurt like that in sparring or in a fight so that was uncharted waters for me and I believe I handled it like a champion!Ē

by Geoffrey Ciani (Exclusive Interview by Jenna J & Geoffrey Ciani) - The most recent edition of On the Ropes Boxing Radio featured an exclusive interview with heavyweight contender Seth ďMayhemĒ Mitchell (25-0-1, 19 KOs) who is coming off of an impressive third round technical knockout victory against Chazz Witherspoon (30-3, 22 KOs). Mitchell spoke about the fight, which included an early scare after Witherspoon landed a couple of shots that left Seth dazed. He also talked about his future plans in boxing and what he learned from this challenge where he was able to overcome adversity and persevere for the win. Here is what Mitchell had to say:

Regarding his third round stoppage victory against Chazz Witherspoon:

ďI mean there was a scare in the first round. I got caught. I just came out flat. Chazz did a great jab dictating with his jab, and I wasnít using my upper body movement as much. I got caught and was able to survive and get out of the first round. That was my whole thing. Once I got dazed and got caught with a couple of shots to tie up and not try to be macho. I made sure I got out of the first round and got my head together, and fortunately I was able to go out there and finish strong.Ē

On whether anything about Witherspoon surprised him:

ďWell no, I respected Chazz. I knew that he had a great jab and I knew he would fight you. He was actually stronger than I expected him to be, though. He was definitely stronger than I expected him to be. But with everything else, I knew he could move a little bit, I knew he had a long reach, and I knew he had a great jab and that he would punch you on the inside. When he got hit you know he would stand there and fight you. So I expected everything that he brought to the table, it was just that I didnít expect him to be as strong.Ē

On what was going through his mind when he was hurt in the first round:

ďCoherently I was there, but my legs werenít there. You know and I didnít realize it that much until I saw it on tape. When I got dazed, I said OK! I knew I was there. It wasnít like I was seeing two or three of him. There was just one of them there. I said OK and I kept my hands up. Heís going to come. I saw him. He noticed that he had dazed me and he came in for the kill, but he didnít attack the body at all. He just straight went for head shots. I said OK. When he gets in close Iím going to tie him up, just to tie him up and try and survive. Then he hit me again and I was dazed again, and the ref separated us and I had spaghetti legs. I said once I get close do not stand there and try and fight with him, because thatís when you get clipped. Just tie him up and get out of the first round. Like once the bell rang and I was walking back to my corner and then sitting in my stool, you know I felt that I was cool. I felt I had recovered. But even for a little bit when I went out there in the second round, like I said coherently I was there, but my legs still werenít fully under me until there was about 30 seconds left in the second round.Ē

Regarding what he was thinking when he first dropped Witherspoon:

ďOh man! I mean I felt good. You know I felt it could possibly be over, but I didnít want to go out there and rush it. So I didnít rush him. I tried to still stay behind my jab and then I just caught him with a couple of more body shots and head shots, and then I just was able to finish him off.Ē

His views on what type of learning experience this was for him:

ďOh man. It was catastrophic in my career. When I cried after the fight it wasnít because I just won the NABO championship. It was because Iím trying to go certain places in boxing for my career and I know how vital it was for me to win that fight. For a fighter, to take a hit like that right now in my career would have set me back like a year, 4 or 5 fights, and thatís definitely something that I didnít want to happen. So I was just happy that I could will myself to pull through it. How I did it, after the first round I just dominated. After the first round I dominated the second round and I dominated the third round, and I was almost stopped in the first round. So I was just happy and I was proud that I was able to just finish like I did. It was big! The experience part was big. Iíve never been hurt like that in sparring or in a fight so that was uncharted waters for me and I believe I handled it like a champion!Ē

Regarding what is next for him:

ďMy goal still remains the same: to become heavyweight champion of the world. Iím still a work in progress. We were thinking about fighting June 30 but I donít know. I got to sit down and talk with my team.Ē

On how much closer he believes his victory over Witherspoon gets him to a title shot:

ďI have always said, when people ask me, ĎAfter this fight do you think you will be ready for the Klitschkos?í No! Absolutely not! Iíve never been the one to say I wanted to fight Klitschko in the next two fights. I still think a year from now, the first two quarters of 2013, if I get the right fights and continue to improve with no injuries then hopefully I will get my opportunity to fight for a world championship.Ē

On whether he gets any added pressure from the fact he is viewed by some as the best American heavyweight:

ďRight! I mean like Iíve always said, youíll never hear me say it. I just so happen to be American and Iím fighting. I want to be the best and Iím going to represent very well, but I let other people say it. I donít say it. Iím not a boastful person. This is what I do to provide for my family, and I try to do it the best way that I can. It feels good that other people think highly of me, but at the same time I will just continue to work hard and Iíll let them say it.Ē

His views on Chauncy Welliver and Michael Grant being rumored as two possible opponents if he takes the June 30 fight:

ďI mean whoever they pick for me to fight Iíll be prepared. I donít call out fighters or say anything about them until they sign the dotted line and itís actually official, because Iíve been there where fights are supposed to happen and the opponent is switched. So Iím ready to fight whoever they put in front of me. Iíll be prepared.Ē

On what he learned from his fight with Chazz Witherspoon:

ďI learned not to follow somebody without my jab. I got to keep my upper torso moving and not bend at the waist so much and bend at the knees. But other than that, when I was hurt I didnít get macho. I tied up. You know I did a lot of smart things when I was hurt, and I definitely learned if you attack that body it will slow your opponent down. Well I mean Iíve always been a good body puncher, but that just right there solidified it.Ē


Follow Seth Michell on Twitter @SethMayhem48


For those interested in listening to the Seth Mitchell interview in its entirety, it begins approximately thirty-one minutes into the program.



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Article posted on 09.05.2012

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