On Saturday, January 28, NABA super welterweight champion Brandon “Bad Boy” Cook (17-0-0, 10KOs) of Ajax, Ontario, makes his hugely anticipated return to the ring against IBF North American titlist Steven “Bang Bang” Butler (18-0-1, 15KOs) of Montreal, Quebec, in a massive continental unification clash. Slated for Montreal’s prestigious Bell Centre, Cook-Butler tops a huge nine-fight card, co-promoted by Eye of the Tiger Management and United Boxing Promotions. Both men are coming off big victories. After winning and defending the WBA Inter-Continental Championship in 2015, Cook set his sights on the NABA crown in 2016, defeating David Doria (14-4-1, 4KOs) of Germany by unanimous decision to claim the vacant title. Butler made waves in 2016 as well, scoring a dominating knockout victory over heavy handed Albertan Janks Trotter (10-4-1, 10KOs) in October.
Leading up to his showdown with Butler, Cook has never been happier with his overall preparation. “This has been my best training camp so far. I took six weeks off work for this fight and it made a huge difference. Butler has the luxury of training full-time and he’s going to find out what it’s like to fight someone who isn’t just coming in to get paid and lay down. I’m sure Steve has trained his ass off for this fight just like I have. All that hard work is put to the test on January 28.”
Cook’s manager Tyler Buxton has always been impressed by his fighter’s dedication and following, both of which will serve him well in Montreal. “Brandon is a different level of professional boxer than most,” said Buxton. “He works a full time job like Joe Smith and is still able to train and fight. On top of all that he has built the biggest and best fan base in Ontario. He has more fans travelling to Montreal to see him fight than most pro boxers can get in their hometowns. He’s one of a kind. Brandon is a real fighter. He wants the biggest fights out there. Butler versus Cook is the biggest all- Canadian fight we have seen, or will see, in years. Next Saturday Team Bad Boy invades the Bell Centre!”
As tends to be the case leading up to high profile fights, there has been no shortage of internet chatter about the fighters and their respective chances. Cook, however, is staying focused on the task at hand. “I have nothing bad to say about Butler,” explained Cook. “His fans talk a lot of trash about me, saying I’m going to get knocked out. I expect that sort of thing. At the end of the day we’re both fighters and this is our job. Let the best man win. I don’t care where the fight is. When that bell rings, I’m coming to fight.”
Cook-Butler is widely considered one of the best All-Canadian match ups fans could ask for and a testament to the willingness of the fighters and promoters to provide competitive, high quality fights. Cook certainly believes it’s a fight the fans don’t want to miss, stating that “anyone that bought a ticket is going to be happy with what they see in the main event, I can tell you that.”
For a fighter like Cook, who maintains a day job despite a gruelling training regimen, community support is vital. “I want to thank all my fans, friends, and family for making the trip to come support me and everyone staying back home to watch,” said Cook. “I also can’t thank my team enough. Thanks to Mike, Gord, Carlos, Paul and Justin for getting me ready for this big fight and to my manager Tyler Buxton and United Boxing Promotions for making this all happen.”
Tickets are selling fast. Get yours today at www.evenko.ca!