In just under two weeks, former world title challenger Dominic “Trouble” Breazeale (17-1, 15 KO’s) makes his anticipated return to the ring against Izu Ugonoh (17-0, 14 KO’s) on February 25, 2017 in Birmingham, Alabama. The intriguing heavyweight match up is scheduled to open up the Premier Boxing Champions telecast on Fox Television. This will be Breazeale’s first bout since taking on IBF world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua last summer in a courageous and spirited effort, which took place in London, England.
Since then, Breazeale has taken some well deserved time off and has been in camp for the last eight weeks, preparing for his return bout with world renowned trainer Manny Robles. The heavyweight contender took some time out of his busy schedule to answer some questions about his bout with Joshua, his training camp, and his upcoming bout with Ugonoh on February 25th.
How was your experience going to England and fighting for the IBF world heavyweight title against Anthony Joshua?
“You know, travelling to England and fighting for the world heavyweight title was a great experience. From the time I got off the plane, to going to the hotel and eating out and everyone knowing who you are, it was definitely a good experience. I came to England with hopes of bringing back the title to the United States, but unfortunately it didn’t go as planned.”
“But I earned the respect of the boxing world and I came to fight that night and didn’t back down at all. I learned more from that one loss, then the seventeen combined fights I won. I realized that I was better than I thought I was. Since then, my stock has risen and I can’t wait to get back out there in the ring and show everyone that I am deserving of another shot at the title whether it’s a rematch against Joshua or a shot at Deontay Wilder or Jospeh Parker. I put the heavyweight division on notice that I am a legitimate contender.”
You were originally supposed to fight Artur Szpilka. Why was there a switch in opponents?
“Yes, I was scheduled to fight Artur Szpilka and then I was told by my management that I would no longer be fighting him. I am not sure what issues he had or if was determined by others that it wouldn’t be a good television fight due to his style. I was already in camp training with southpaws, so I prepared for Szpilka either way. Now we have moved on and are preparing for Ugonoh.”
How is training camp going?
“Training camp is going really well. I was in camp before the fight was announced so I am in great shape. My coaches Manny Robles and Edgar Jasso have a great fight plan for me and my strength and conditioning is also going well with coach Darryl Hudson. We are going back to the basics and just trying to master the jab and the one-two followed up by great shots that will have my opponent hitting the canvas.”
“One of my issues was just always trying to get that KO and thinking about it instead of just moving my hands and letting things open up. I have been working on that with my sparring partners and we are improving every day.”
What do you know about your opponent Izu Ugonoh?
“To be honest, I never really heard of him until my management asked me if I wanted to fight him. I looked him up and saw some video footage of him. As I understand it, he used to be a kick boxer who transformed into a boxer. He has some boxing skills and it looks like it will be a great match up for the fans.”
“Two heavyweights moving towards each other and throwing punches always has the possibility of fireworks and somebody getting knocked out. Coach Manny and I have reviewed film and we have a great plan come fight night. I clearly am the bigger and stronger fighter so I definitely think I have the edge.”
How does it feel to have your bout being nationally televised live on Fox television?
“You know, I have been blessed to have my last four fights nationally televised on the Premier Boxing Champions series with this being the fifth. It feels great and I am thankful to my management for allowing me the platform to showcase my skills. I have a great fan base which has grown so much since my last fight and I am glad that they are able to continue to follow me and my continued success.”
“It’s awesome that this fight is on regular Fox and you don’t need to have an expensive cable plan or pay to see the fights on February 25th. PBC is bringing it back to old days when you could see Muhammad Ali or Sugar Ray Leonard on regular television before cable was popular. Free boxing is great for the fans.”
What are your expectations for the fight with Ugonoh and how it plays out?
“I’m coming to Alabama to win, plain and simple. Ugonoh has never been on a stage like this and I may put the gas on the pedal and pressure him a bit and let him know what it is like to be in the ring with a man who is 6’7″, 250 pounds imposing his will on him. It is going to be 10 rounds of hell for him if he lasts that long.”
“This is a must win for me if I expect to get another shot at the title and he is the next obstacle in the way. Come February 25th, the fans at the Legacy Arena in Alabama and people watching all over the world will be guaranteed a great fight.”
“Here Comes Trouble”