Arthur Abraham Interview: ďI donít wish Mirandaís childhood on anybody!Ē
25.08.06 - By Izyaslav ďSlavaĒ Koza: Last Saturday, I spoke with the IBF Middleweight champion Armenian, Arthur Abraham, effectively a week before what was to be the second defense of his title against Colombian, Edison Miranda. As it turns out, this Saturday we will not have the chance to see the bout due to the champion coming down with the flu (Authorís note: the interview took place before the fight was cancelled)..
Article posted on 26.08.2006
Leading up to the bout, which as of today is scheduled for September 23rd, there were many verbal jabs and hooks traded between both camps in order to spice up the interest and the bout. However, after speaking with Arthur this past week, I feel this is more a matter of competitive hostility rather than all out animosity. Hopefully, the fight will come off successfully and Arthur gets better fast.
ESB: Good Evening, Arthur! How is it going? Whatís new in your life?
Arthur: Evening! Everything is ok. I just finished training for the fight and I will rest a bit now.
ESB: How was the training?
Arthur: Everything was great. Good sparring partners, gave me a good work out, I listened to my trainer a lot and now I am just ready to fight and to win.
ESB: Who did you spar with and how many rounds did you go?
Arthur: With Ashira, with Stepjan Bozic, and a third guy, a Russian, but I forgot his name. Bozic is Croatian and he is a good fighter, too. I did about 6-8, depending on the day, something like that.
ESB: Often times, many fighters say it is harder to defend a title than to win it. Do you think the fight with Jantuah was harder than with Ikeke?
Arthur: Yeah, of course. Slavik, this is absolutely true, it is extremely difficult. It is hard to win the title of course but to hold it, is even harder. Jantuah was my toughest fight and he was very uncomfortable as an opponent.
ESB: Some of our readers want to know, if when you were fighting Jantuah, was it your plan to fight all 12 rounds or was it a matter of what he was doing?
Arthur: I donít have plans of this nature. You canít determine what the result of any given fight will be beforehand and say, 'I want a KO or a points win.' Everybody wants a first round knockout but this is quite rare. It all depends on your opponent and the tactics he uses and you can only truly see that when you are in the ring with him.
ESB: What are yours plans going be for the week before the fight?
Arthur: Oh, the usual: press conferences, light training, weigh-in and that is it, the fight. The most important thing is the fight.
ESB: Regardless of the result, what plans do you have after the fight? What will you do? Will you go home, maybe?
Arthur: I have no plans really, cause I am just too focused on the fight. As far as going home, yeah, I will go for a few days, then my dad will come here. My mom is already here.
ESB: Will Alex go, too?
Arthur: No, he will stay. I will go for only about a week.
ESB: How are negotiations going with Jermain Taylor and HBO? Any new details?
Arthur: Sure, that is still happening, my promoter Wilfried Sauerland is handling this, as usual. Of course, I can only think one step ahead. I want to face them all but only one at a time. As we say, 'The quieter the ride, the longer the distance.' (Laughing)
Arthur: Yeah, if everything will go ok, then next year, I will probably be fighting in America. Itís possible that Jermain Taylor will be the opponent, although that is what I know things can and do change.
ESB: Did you watch Jermain Taylor vs. Winky Wright? Who did you think won?
Arthur: Of course! And I think Wright won. I didnít score it but I thought he looked stronger.
ESB: Well, then, that begs the question, if you think he won, then why not try to fight him or is it harder to agree to terms there?
Arthur: It's very simple, actually, because whoever the champion is, he's the guy I want to fight. I want to become the ďSuperĒ champ, you know?
ESB: I understand. Well, why do you think Felix Sturm lost to Castillejo? Are there any negotiations with Castilejo?
Arthur: Felix lost because he chose the wrong tactic. He wanted to brawl with him but he is not a brawler; rather, he's a technical boxer and so he lost.
ESB: Are you acquainted with Felix Sturm?
Arthur: Of course, we speak often. Maybe we arenít friends, so to say, but we are well acquainted.
ESB: Did he say something in regards to his loss?
Arthur: No, and really a week after the fight, his mother died, so he is in mourning now and he is not talking much. Itís hard to talk about that, you know?
ESB: I understand. Would you want to fight Castillejo?
Arthur: For me, it's not that interesting and Jermain Taylor is the better fight. Although he (Castillejo) is the champion now, so it is possible. However, he has a rematch clause with Sturm in his contract, so it would be difficult to set up in the near future.
ESB: Why do you think Miranda is trying to insult you so much?
Arthur: Really? well, what did he say this time?
ESB: Oh, you know, the usual, 'I will knock him out,' and so forth.
Arthur: How many times has one guy said, ďI will knock him out and then ended up being knocked out themselves?Ē I am not that kind of person; If I say something, then I will do it. If not, then after I do it, I will talk. I try not to throw words out into thin air. Let him talk cause when he will feel one of my punches, then everything else becomes irrelevant and he is thinking about something else.
ESB: Do you think it is a psychological ploy?
Arthur: Nah, he is not that big to do that. Nobody has ever done it to me, anyway (laughing).
ESB: Maybe itís a way to market the fight to the public and to entertain them?
Arthur: Well, if he is the kind of guy who likes to entertain the public with his mouth, then it will be interesting. I would rather try to entertain the public with my skill in the ring.
ESB: They say Miranda had a difficult childhood. How does your own stack up?
Arthur: Everybody has their own difficulties and problems in life. Mine was not as difficult as his and I donít wish Mirandaís childhood on anybody. I had my share of problems but I donít want to talk about them now. Thank God everything is ok now, and we are living well, and we have everything we need.
My childhood was normal. Good family, hard working parents, and so on. We studied sports from an early age, about 7, Karate then before that Gymnastics. We never had issues with our parents and we still live with them together in the same house.
ESB: Yeah, relative to say, Roy Jones Jr. or Floyd Mayweather Jr., this seems rare.
Arthur: Yeah, we love them very much, and my brother and I said, they shall not work anymore and we will do everything we can so they live well. We bought them cars, a house and everything else they may need.
ESB: What kind of cars?
ESB: Werenít they going to move to Germany?
Arthur: Yeah, well, mom is here now and dad will come soon on September 11th, cause momís birthday is coming up. I wanted them to come after the fight because they donít like to watch my bouts.
ESB: Wish her well from us. Recently in another interview, you said Miranda has no real strengths as a fighter. However, against Eastman, he won via knockout and you by points. Do you think he is a stronger puncher than you?
Arthur: Probably, he is a stronger puncher, but a tractor is also stronger than a BMW, but who is better on the road?
ESB: (laughing) Nicely put.
Arthur: Exactly, because in the ring, the winner will be the guy whose head works better, not who can swing the hardest. The smarter guy will win.
ESB: Yeah, sort of like that big, fat, white guy, Butterbean. Have you seen him?
Arthur: Of course, if you donít let him hit you, he doesnít know how to win.
ESB: How are things with your brother? Anything new about his next fight?
Arthur: Yeah, he will fight on the 23rd of September here in Germany and is training now to be in good form. Nothing is known about his next fight but it will be somebody good we hope.
ESB: He will be at the fight right? Will he be in your corner?
Arthur: Of course, I canít fight without him. It is very important for him to be there because he often notices little details about the opponent. He wonít be in the corner though as that is the trainerís job, but when I am on the stool, I can only hear his voice or the voice of my trainer.
ESB: Which boxers do you communicate with most often in your free time?
Arthur: Mostly with our guys, Markus Beyer, Marco Huk, Pablo Hernandez. That is our group and we are like friends. We celebrate almost all our events together.
ESB: How about Artur Grigorian? He is a trainer now I think.
Arthur: Yeah, we meet up a few times a year and keep in touch.
ESB: How about the Armenian, Vahtang ďVicĒ Darchinyan?
Arthur: Of course, and he is a great guy. We competed together for the Armenian national team in Erevan and played cards often (laughing). He is a great boxer and a great person.
ESB: Did you watch the Rahman vs. Maskaev fight? Do those sorts of bouts motivate you to fight harder sometimes?
Arthur: I didnít watch it but heard that Maskaev won by KO. I usually watch other fighters, like Barrera and Morales, and each one has their own style. For instance, I could never fight like Roy Jones Jr., or Mike Tyson, but I can take little things from any good fighter.
As far as seeing them being real men and showing their character in hard situations, yeah, this is a good stimulator for me.
ESB: Any predictions for the fight with Miranda?
Arthur: Predictions? Well, my prediction is I will win but by points or KO, that I donít know (laughing).
ESB: What do you want to say in closing to your fans and viewers?
Arthur: I want to tell the viewers that they will hear a lot more about me and will see many more great things as well. I donít box for myself I box for my fans and supporters.
ESB: Arthur, thanks for your time. I wish you all the best and that you will be able to come out victorious.
Arthur: Thanks! Until next time.
ESB: Sure and hopefully I can offer up my congrats by then. Good Bye.
I want to thank Heiko Mallwitz for setting up the interview and once again I hope Arthur will get better soon and this fight will be rescheduled sometime in the near future.
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