Ike Ibeabuchi Interview: "The President” Wants To Get Back On The Campaign Trail!!

16.11.06 - By Izyaslav “Slava” Koza: When I first started getting into boxing discussion and following the sport a few years back, I won a VHS tape full of any recorded fights of my choosing the owner could fit on there. At that time, sharing clips was not really all that common, so I was lucky enough to obtain some fights I never watched live.

Without thinking, two of the bouts I selected involved a fighter by the name of Ike Ibeabuchi, who was still quite a hot topic, considering he was no longer active. For those who follow the sport, it’s pretty obvious that the bouts also involved David Tua and Chris Byrd and some very interesting circumstances. Before Wladimir Klitschko recently pulverized Byrd, the only time Chris had ever been stopped was against Ibeabuchi, but what was more intriguing was the manner in which it happened.

In the words of many excited fans, not only did Ibeabuchi stop Byrd, but he was able to land about as hard and decapitating a barrage as any of the billion elites that Byrd had faced in his entire career. Those that have seen the stoppage, will most likely bring it up any time vicious knockouts are discussed.

As far as the Tua fight goes, the reason I selected the bout is that what both men accomplished in terms of punches thrown over 12 rounds, was enough to break any 15 round punch thrown record in the history of boxing. To date that is one of the greatest displays of heavyweight boxing that I have ever had the pleasure of watching.

Now I am not here to discuss Ibeabuchi’s guilt or innocence because I don’t know enough about the case to be committed to a serious opinion. However, the life a boxer has outside the ring is not relevant to the things he accomplishes in it. Ike deserves our respect for the things he has already done for our entertainment, and as you shall see for not wasting, or giving up on life in prison. For that alone, we wish Ike luck and at the very least another chance at freedom because that is what America is all about, anyway.

ESB: First of all, Ike, thank you a great deal for doing this because it means a lot.

Ike Ibeabuchi: You’re welcome. Like I stated before, there is nothing that I will not do for my fans.

ESB: I can’t begin to tell you how hopeful some fans got in June 2005 when there was a chance that you could be paroled. When is your next parole hearing and can fans do anything to help you?

Ike Ibeabuchi: With all due respect, to the date of my last parole hearing, it was August 2004 not June 2005. My next parole hearing is scheduled for August 2007.

I don’t quite know what fans can do to help me. I suppose letters of concern to various state of Nevada officials, on my behalf, wouldn’t hurt (Governor, Secretary of State, Parole Commissioner, etc.). I would welcome any support I can get, even from President Bush. I hear he is a big boxing fan.

ESB: Can you describe your daily routine for us? I know one of the problems must be the inability to do real road-work or any traditional boxing exercises, but can you still do something to stay in shape?

Ike Ibeabuchi: My daily routine begins with prayer and fasting from 6:00 am to 12:00pm, during which time I do a rigorous workout. I will not reveal the specifics of my workout. I do not want the competition getting an early read, if you know what I mean. I do run, but not the traditional roadwork. I'm limited here.

I believe what the fans really want to know, is whether I am in shape. The answer is yes.

I'm in shape to fight right now. My boxing program includes shadow boxing and the study of "Psycho-pugilism". God willing, I shall introduce the world o£ boxing to my new supreme delicacy Psycho-pugilism (The Food of The Warrior Boxing God) upon my eventual return to the ring.

I also study, go to school (college classes), and watch a little soap opera. I watch Law & Order and Jeopardy, almost everyday. By 10:00 pm, I'm in my room for the late evening news. I read mail and e-mails from my fans, and answer them accordingly. My evening is closed with a prayer while lying down in my bed.

ESB: The story of Mike Tyson’s stint in jail was to some degree glamorized and it was suggested the other inmates were afraid of him. Can you tell us how the other inmates respond to you and how you interact with them?

Ike Ibeabuchi: Unlike Mike Tyson, I am housed in the general population with other inmates. Therefore, I have the opportunity to mingle with inmates of different races and cultural backgrounds.

ESB: How does it feel when 1500 inmates call you “The Champ?”

Ike Ibeabuchi: Flattering. But God knows they are right. The justification being my accomplishments since my incarceration. My composure, tenacity, endurance, and overall conduct, worth emulating here in the prison. In short, I set positive examples. I identify all fellow inmates as “bro.” Many of them are even willing to do my time for me, for no cost. They are my turpitude, and I respect them dearly.

ESB: Without a doubt, the most memorable moment of your career to most fans is the devastating punch that basically did in Chris Byrd. Whenever fans ask about you on boxing forums, this is the first video clip they are shown. I am sure you were asked this before but can you please describe that whole moment one more time for us?

Ike Ibeabuchi: It was memorable but not the most. It was memorable because it was episodic. I was fighting circumstances of a façade outside of boxing, when the Chris Byrd fight was made. The most memorable moments were each of my ring entrances, where I displayed my ingenuity, which got better and better each time.

To describe the Chris Byrd fight, is to teach or describe how to catch or kill a fly with your bare hands. Do not try to catch the fly directly, even as it is perched or rests. Always aim at the vacuum of its escape. Most of the time, the vacuum becomes the fly at last when you open your hand.

ESB: Do you have any idea what reasoning Byrd tried to use in arguing with the referee when he got up? Many fans always asked what Byrd was trying to say there.

Ike Ibeabuchi: He didn't believe I was able to do that to him, to out smart him. Of course, he's a "spartan." He is not going to quit until he can't breathe anymore. After all, he did become a world champion.

ESB: The most memorable fight of your career was unquestionably the record breaking bomb fest against David Tua. Even though Tua has been beaten, nobody has ever done what you have against him. In preparation for that fight, did you train for precisely that kind of fight?

Ike Ibeabuchi: You see, it took only two fights to define me for most fans, David Tua and Chris Byrd. Two contrasting styles. Indeed, a symbolic crucifix gesture; that is by the way. Tua was tough, but to beat him, I had to do things only a superman would do. With the help of Curtis Cokes, my trainer, I had to be a genie. A sledgehammer wouldn't have stopped me that night. I was thinking 15 rounds of boxing. 12 rounds was just incomplete. Remember now, in round 12, I started my round one routine again, indicating that I was beginning to do a second lap.

ESB: Do you still follow boxing? If so, can you give a few thoughts on the following fighters (strengths, weaknesses, and How you would fight them)?

Ike Ibeabuchi: I follow boxing.

ESB: Henry Akinwande?

Ike Ibeabuchi: Is he still boxing? I would hold him all night long.

ESB: Shannon Briggs?

Ike Ibeabuchi: I will make sure we are not fighting in New Jersey and then I will be alright.

ESB: Calvin Brock?

Ike Ibeabuchi: When it comes to costing, I am the project, and he is the job order. Point made.

ESB: Wladimir Klitschko?

Ike Ibeabuchi: It takes a longer time to obtain a Ph.D in the English language courses.

ESB: Sergei Lyakhovich?

Ike Ibeabuchi: It takes God and Heartbreaks to be a great finisher.

ESB: Oleg Maskaev?

Ike Ibeabuchi: I’m impressed but you know when the cats are away, the mice will play.

ESB: Samuel Peter?

Ike Ibeabuchi: All my brother needs to do is take his time.

ESB: Hasim Rahman?

Ike Ibeabuchi: It’s time to become a full-fledged politician. He practically knows everything.

ESB: Nikolai Valuev?

Ike Ibeabuchi: I can’t wait to fight a man at least.

ESB: Which of them is the best fighter right now in the division?

Ike Ibeabuchi: Samuel Peter is the best fighter, but he's got to take his time to inflict pain to prove it.

ESB: Which boxers are you friends with?

Ike Ibeabuchi: Do you mean before a fight, or after a fight? No War, NO FRIENDS!

ESB: Who is the best p4p in the world right now?

Ike Ibeabuchi: My "boy," Floyd Maywhether. When I see Floyd, and all his charisma, I say to him, "Thank You.”

ESB: Ike, I know life in Prison is a very difficult thing, so can you tell us what helps you keep your head together, and helps you get through the days?

Ike Ibeabuchi: My life, even in prison, depicts a life that has been lived in the bible many times. I like to see myself as the (Baptist or the Messiah with God 1st), like Daniel in the Lion’s Den, like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the fiery furnace, but never burned, like Jacob who had run from his hairy brother in Dallas. Like Samson who saw wisdom and humility when his eyes were gone, like Moses who ruled scorpions and snakes in the desert, and I could go on and on.

ESB: What do you miss the most about being on the outside?

Ike Ibeabuchi: I miss everything a man in need would.

ESB: How did you get your nickname "The President”?

Ike Ibeabuchi: Alright “now,” with all due respect to the President of anything, and grandiosity apart, I am so way above that name “President,” so condescending. Shelly Mann, of Dallas, can agree with me, too. I’d rather be known by my real name in full "Ikemefula." It is “nine” letters, indeed. A prayer to God for my strength to keep.

ESB: What do you want to say in closing to all your fans and the people reading this interview?

Ike Ibeabuchi: I would like the fans to know that I am an innocent man, and that I am being made a scapegoat for my perspicacity. Many know this. Nevertheless, I am dealing with this unfortunate circumstance to the very best of my ability. I have not stopped fighting and I never will. I was proclaimed the most dangerous man in the ring in 1999.

Now with my academic achievements and life experiences, I feel I have the ability to take huge strides outside the ring as well. Still, I equally share your pains of deprived quality boxing entertainment. With your continued support for justice, perhaps we can reverse the situation and get a rightful and true heavyweight champion back in the ring.

I love you all, and thank you for your untiring continued support in and out of the ring.

ESB: Ike, thank you again for doing this. Do you want your fans to write you and should we make public your email address?

Ike Ibeabuchi: Yes, my fans may write or email me at the following address, or web-site. I look forward to hearing from them.


Mailing Address:

Ikemefula C. Ibeabuchi 71979


Carson City, Nevada 89702-0607

United States of America

I want to thank Ike’s mother Patricia for helping out in getting this interview.

On the Horizon: Interview with #1 contender Sultan Ibragimov.

Article posted on 17.11.2006

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