Q & A with Shannon Briggs

<25.08.04 - By Scoop Malinowski: Everything is on the line for Heavyweight contender Shannon Briggs this Friday night against Ray Mercer. The Miami-based Brooklynite will be fighting for career survival.

Briggs, 33, and Mercer, 44, will be the main event of Cedric Kushner and Warrior's Boxing August 26th PPV from Hollywood, Florida. Also on the bill will be Jameel "Big Time" McCline and IBF Cruiserweight champ O'Neil Bell vs. Sebastien Rothmann of South Africa. Here's the latest from Briggs (42-4-1 with 36 KO's):

Q: Ray Mercer is a tough cookie. What's it going to take for you to beat him?

Shannon Briggs: "It's going to take everything. It's gonna take my skills, my talent, my youth, my energy, it's gonna take it all. It's gonna take what it took to beat the other 42 guys I beat."

Q: What are your plans for the next 1-2 years in the heavyweight division?

Shannon Briggs: "Just become the most known fighter in the world, publicize myself, and most marketed, bring in those sponsorships, hopefully bring sponsors back to the sport. I'd like to bring some fan-friendly type sponsors back - the Gatorades, the Nikes, just bring back huge sponsors and make boxing marketable. Fighters aren't really making that much money right now. And it's because fans would rather see WWE which they know is fake, it's entertainment, as opposed to a real boxing match. So we've got to do things to bring people back to the sport. Not stupid things, not antics or drama like Tyson. Get the stories out now, the stories behind the fighters, as opposed to just seeing two guys fighting."

Q: Who are you specifically hunting? Anyone?

Shannon Briggs: "No one in specific. Every man in boxing. Every man in the heavyweight division that wants to get it in with me, we can get it in. I feel I'm here to just to use these guys as stepping-stones. My goal is to become the most recognized heavyweight champion, heavyweight fighter period. Champion, not, because there's too many belts. Just get out there, stay busy, fight. Every month, every other month. Let people see there's a fight going on, Shannon Briggs is fighting. Boxing is hot. You got Million Dollar Baby, The Contender - boxing is hot. People love boxing. Every gym/health club in America has kickboxing or boxing going on. People love boxing and you see once they take a boxing class, they always look back and say it was great. I want to help put boxing in the forefront, right where it needs to be - the number one sport in the world. This is a great sport. I can't even say a real man's sport because women's fights are becoming great."

Q: What made Lennox Lewis such an effective and dominant heavyweight champion?

Shannon Briggs: "He was a very disciplined fighter, in the sense that he didn't do many things. He just kept it real simple. He was a very strong fighter, he stayed with his jab and strong right hand. He was a strong fighter period. He was a disciplined fighter."

Q: Do you believe Lennox is an all-time great?

Shannon Briggs: "I don't think so. But for this era he held it down. But I don't know how he would have done against guys in the early 80's, like against a strong Pinklon Thomas, a James Quick Tillis, I think he would have had problems with those guys, even a young Tony Tubbs. Those guys were slick. I don't know. I have a question. I don't know."

Article posted on 25.08.2005

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