Shannon Briggs Wants to Rid Soviet Bloc From Heavyweight Division

08.06.06 - By Laz Izada: If you havenít noticed lately, the Cold War has reappeared, this time in the boxing heavyweight division. At the present time, the ex-Soviet Republics have almost completely taken over the heavyweight division, with fighter, such as, Nicolay Valuev, the current WBA champ from Mother Russia, Wladimir Klitschko, the IBF champ from Ukraine, and Sergie Lyakhovich, the WBO champ from Belarus, and Maskaev, who is taking on Hasim Rahman, in August.

Above all else, the ex-Soviet Republic invasion is serious, and as American Boxing fans, we might be seeing the end of an era, when American heavyweights dominated their European counterparts. At this time of turmoil and high gas prices, we need an American to feel proud of and to get the heavyweight belts back to their rightful home.

Thank goodness, there is one such heavyweight that, I feel, can do the job and that man is Shannon Briggs (47-4-1, 41 KO's). He's bigger, stronger, wiser and with all the right tools in place. That's not all, he's also, in fact, larger and more experienced than any of the current Soviet fighters. He's currently ranked # 5 by the WBO and has boxingís dream team Promoter, Cedric Kushner, Manager, Scott Hirsch, and Trainer, Jeff Mayweather, behind him.

Why do I believe in Briggs as our man? Well, it has to do with his power punching, quickness, boxing skills, new team in place, rejuvenation as "Comeback Fighter of 2005," and his activeness as a fighter, since he's currently fighting every 45 days, against the best possible opponents that are willing to step up to the plate for the challenge. From speaking to him and seeing him live, heís got that look and determination that no one will stop him. Briggs, also has the attributes and personality to carry the belts with American style and swagger, and I believe, he can talk the talk and walk the walk and flex some muscle at the Russians.

Much has been expected from Briggs from the start of his career. Way back then, Ali, Holyfield and others predicted for him to be the next ďgreat one." I believe he is focused to do so.

Now, I firmly think he is the one fighter who is capable and ready to unify all the belts. I believe he wants to finally silence his critics that have said that he is an underachiever. A boxer with a record of 47-4-1 with 41 knockouts is no where near an underachiever he has beaten former Olympians and World Champions in Foreman and Mercer and gave Lewis all he could. To his merit, he has won 2005 Comeback Fighter of the Year, has 11 devastating KOís in a row and three U.S. Heavyweight Belts around his waist and he wonít stop until he get's another heavyweight title. Sounds like an overachiever coming back the way he has.

Some people have compared his comeback to George Foremanís, so there shouldnít be any argument about the guys he has knocked out recently. Iím sure his camp is talking to all the World Title holders and he will get his shot sometime this fall, at Madison Square Garden. Before then, heíll probably have one more tune up fight in July, again with Cedric Kushnerís Gotham Boxing in New York City. Look for him to come in around 250-255 LBS for that bout.

I talked to Briggs in NYC about his U.S. representation in the Pan Am games in Cuba 91, and winning Silver, while losing to a much older Felix Savon from Cuba. He was very proud of representing America and regrets not being in the 92 Olympics due to injury, he would of likely faced Savon for the Gold again. He wants to represent America now as a pro and take on and defeat the Russians and all World Title holders.

I donít know how you all feel about Briggs, but if you see him fight live, and I strongly suggest you do at the next Gotham Boxing show in July in NYC, you will believe he is our American Hope,that is, if Rahman loses tp Maskaev on August 12th) to rid the Soviet Bloc of the heavyweight division and unify the titles. So letís stand by our man BRIGGS and U.S.A. ALL THE WAY.

Article posted on 09.06.2006

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