Klitschko/Jennings Weigh-In Live Stream

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IAoatq-tyGs

Saturday’s HBO World Championship Boxing doubleheader telecast begins at 10:00 p.m. (ET/PT).

The HBO telecast kicks off from Madison Square Garden in New York City with an exciting 10-round welterweight showdown between Sadam Ali and Francisco Santana. The main event pits Wladimir Klitschko defending his heavyweight championship against Bryant Jennings.

Official Weights from New York:

Wladimir Klitschko: 241.6 lbs. – Bryant Jennings: 226.8 lbs.
Sadam Ali: 146.8 lbs. – Francisco Santana: 146.4 lbs.

Heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko has recalled his dramatic rise to the top on the eve of his world title defence against undefeated Bryant Jennings.

The Ukrainian superstar will make his return to US soil for the first time in seven years when he takes on the slick Philadelphian at the iconic Madison Square Garden in New York, live and exclusive on BoxNation this Saturday night.

The 39-year-old Klitschko, though, has been reminiscing about how it all started for him when he won Olympic gold in Atlanta in 1996, instantly catapulting him into a hero in his home country over night.

“I remember before I went to the Olympics and former Olympic champion in track running, [Valeriy] Borzov, he was Minister of Sports in the Ukraine. He said, “Guys, you’re going to the Olympics and one of you is going to win gold. That’s going to change your life.”

“He was really right about it. I remember by winning the gold at the Olympics, when I came back home it completely changed my life,” said Klitschko.

“Sport definitely has power to change one’s life and the world, as Nelson Mandela said. When I became champion of the world in the heavyweight division, that was 15 years ago, in 2000, and it was an amazing moment.

“I do remember clearly how it was and it was additional motivation to keep doing what I was doing. I was only 24-years-old. I mean, very, very young, but I took it seriously and I was working up to it and I believed that my work was appreciated with my success in the ring and that I became champion,” he said.

WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO champion Klitschko hasn’t shown any signs of decline in recent times despite being just a year short of his 40th birthday.

Still dominant and sitting high at the top of boxing’s glamour division Klitschko believes age has no bearing on how long he can go on for.

“I definitely think that age is just a number. Actually, it’s a big advantage instead of disadvantage because with the age you’re getting better. With the right lifestyle there’s nothing that can go wrong,” said Klitschko.

“I’m really happy about the preparation [for this training camp] and I’m happy that I’m an athlete and I can get in the peak of my performance thanks to my experience. I’m looking forward to Saturday night.

“My sparring partners were 23, 25, 27, 29-years-old. It’s amazing and interesting that considering my age, I used to be the youngest in the gym all the time, and now it seems my sparring partners are much younger than me. I see myself in them and we work very well,” he said.

30-year-old challenger Jennings, with a record of 19-0 with 10 knockouts, has been working on ways to nullify the well renowned Klitschko jab which he has utilised so effectively against past opponents.

“He has a great jab but I have an exceptional jab compared to his as well. He is one of the best athletes I’ve seen for that,” said Jennings.

“There are definitely plenty of ways to actually get inside of a jab. Like lateral movement, head movement and relentless effort will definitely penetrate and make a change.

“I have 100% confidence in everything that I do. I had a great training camp. The way that we actually prepare to manoeuvre around the jab, I feel is effective and I have 100% faith in what we practiced. All I’m going to have to be is patient and be smart,” he said.

Klitschko v Jennings is live on BoxNation (Sky 437/490HD, Virgin 546 and TalkTalk 525) this Saturday night at 1am. Visit boxnation.com to subscribe.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFJzb1fB8dE

Heavyweight legend Wladimir Klitschko says public demand pushed him to return to US soil for the first time in seven years.

The undisputed world number one last fought in America back in 2008 when he outpointed sturdy Russian Sultan Ibragimov at the fabled Madison Square Garden in New York.

He now returns to ‘The Mecca of Boxing’ when he takes on undefeated Philadelphian challenger Bryant Jennings, live and exclusive on BoxNation, with the Ukrainian ace saying his hand was forced due to US fight fans eager to see him in the flesh once again.

“It’s not just my own decision; it’s the demand. The demand was so strong – I’m thankful the demand was so strong from public. We can see it in ticket sales; Madison Square Garden wants to see a Klitschko fight and that was supported by the fans because of ticket sales,” said Klitschko.

“Also, from television, the demand is so big that it made me, forced me to come here and fight in the States. On the other hand, I’m really happy about it because the demand in Europe was so strong.

“For the past years I’ve been fighting at soccer stadiums filled out with over 60,000 people and it’s a question of demand. And I’m really, really happy about it, that boxing kicks in eventually and is unbelievably popular right now in the States.

“You really can see it and hear it on the radio and a lot of different channels with all the fight nights and it’s a great time. I think it’s the right time, right place and the right opponent to make it,” he said.

39-year-old Klitschko, who will need to face his mandatory Tyson Fury next up if he prevails, will be putting his WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO belts on the line against the slick Jennings, who has won all 19 of his fights.

Jennings credentials as a legitimate contender have long been mooted and on Saturday night Klitschko is expecting a thrilling fight and is hoping his opponent will stand and trade with him.

“I’m prepared for Bryant Jennings. I’m not going to underestimate him by no means. I’m not going to overestimate him by no means because as I said, we’re all limited, including myself. So we can only fight in the way we can fight and I think that it’s going to be an exciting fight,” said Klitschko.

“Why? Because Bryant Jennings is pretty much at home. He’s going to have a lot of support in the arena and he’s highly motivated, he’s very energetic, he’s a little hyper type of fighter, and he moves a lot, he’s very athletic, but hopefully he’s not going to move around too much, he’s going to come to fight the same way as Pulev did.

“He didn’t move around much. He just came in and was throwing punches and being aggressive. So I’m hoping and expecting that Bryant Jennings is going to give me a fight where he’s going to be aggressive,” he said.

Some feel the opportunity may have come too soon for 30-year-old Jennings who started his career late at 24 after having played local league basketball and up until just last year was working as a maintenance man at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

Jennings is unfazed, however, facing the 1996 Olympic gold medalist, who is unbeaten in 11 years, believing experience won’t be the telling factor in this fight.

“Experience plays a part but it’s not a big part because we’ve seen situations where the inexperienced guy comes out on top whether it’s in sports, whether it’s in politics, whether it’s in anything,” said Jennings.

“I don’t pretty much play that experience game because everybody who I face has more experience than me. I first put on the gloves six years ago and here I am fighting for the heavyweight championship of the world.

“I’m aware of the specimen in Wladimir. He’s a very dedicated individual. He’s always been. He appears to live the clean life and he’s a 100% athlete. There’s a lot of things that I’ll be taking on come Saturday, but there are some things that I bring to the table as well.

“I’ll be what I think is the fourth Philly-born heavyweight to ever fight for a title and the second Philly-born heavyweight to ever win it once I become champion,” he said.

Klitschko v Jennings is live on BoxNation (Sky 437/490HD, Virgin 546 and TalkTalk 525) this Saturday night at 1am. Visit boxnation.com to subscribe.