Unified WBC and IBF champion Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr. and WBA champion Yordenis Ugas faced off at a final press conference on Thursday, two days before they meet in a welterweight title unification clash live on SHOWTIME PPV at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT this Saturday, April 16 from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas headlining a Premier Boxing Champions event.
(Photo credit: Ryan Hafey/Premier Boxing Champions)
A confident Spence declared AT&T Stadium “my house” come Saturday and even predicted that it likely won’t go the distance if the fight is waged in close quarters. Meanwhile, Ugas said he would lean on the resolve that has allowed him to overcome adversity in his life to power past Spence in the ring.
Just the 12th unification fight in the rich history of the welterweight division, Spence vs. Ugas will join other classic unification matchups at the weight class such as “Sugar,” Ray Leonard vs. Thomas Hearns I, and Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao.
Spence will look to add a third welterweight championship belt to his resume when he returns to fight at AT&T Stadium in front of his hometown fans for the third time. Ugas enters this matchup off of a career-best victory last August. He retained his WBA title unanimously by stepping in for an injured Spence to defeat boxing legend Manny Pacquiao.
Tickets for the live event, which TGB Promotions and Man Down Promotions promote, are on sale now and can be purchased at SeatGeek.com, the Official Ticketing Provider of AT&T Stadium.
Before fight night, PBC fighters previewed Spence vs. Ugas in a video HERE via the SHOWTIME Boxing Instagram. Here is what the press conference participants had to say Thursday from Main Club North at AT&T Stadium:
ERROL SPENCE JR.
“It’s going to be action-packed on Saturday night. I’m looking to put on a great show and an outstanding performance in front of my hometown fans. I know Ugas is coming to fight. I know his coach has a great game plan, but come Saturday night, I’m putting on a great show and another outstanding performance.
I’m looking forward to adding the WBA belt to my titles, so I have three straps. That means there’s just one more to go.
“When people say I can’t do this or I can’t do that, I prove them wrong every time. I am the same guy I was before the accident and the injury. I feel better than that guy who fought Shawn Porter or Danny Garcia.
“This fight might not go the distance. Ugas is a tough fighter. He’s a guy that embraces the conflict and wants to go toe-to-toe. If he has to, he’ll do anything to win. I’m that type of guy. I’m the type of guy who will go toe-to-toe if I have to go head-to-head. If I have to stay there and fight, I will. If we get in the clinch and start fighting, I don’t think it’s going 12 rounds.
“Everybody knows my motivation. I fight for my family, friends, city, and the whole state of Texas. I want to be the three-belt unified champion of the world, and I want to become the future undisputed welterweight champion of the world—the first ever to do it.
“This is my house. This is my hometown. I love the Dallas Cowboys to death. I love AT&T Stadium, and I appreciate them giving me the hospitality and making this my home. Come Saturday night. I’m going to win another championship in the home of the Cowboys.”
“I’m so excited for this fight. I have nothing but respect for Spence. He’s a great fighter, and this will be a clash between two of the most outstanding trainers in the world and between us, so you’re not going to want to miss that either.
“Spence promises a knockout. Don’t miss it! I promise a win.
“I have a wise trainer. Somebody that has seen more boxing than most. But we have different opinions, and I think Spence will be one hundred percent. I prepared for the best Spence possible. That’s been my mindset throughout.
“People know my story by now. I came back from being 15-3 back in 2016, and ever since then, I have established myself as part of the elite in this division. I have been willing to do whatever it takes to get to where I am. If he’s the big fish, I belong in that same tank because I’m eager to swim with the big fish whenever, wherever.
“I promise you blood, sweat, and everything I have to give for my country and fans. For everyone watching the pay-per-view, we’re going to put on a great show, and you’re going to see the same Ugas that put his heart and soul into this sport that means so much to me.
“I’m a warrior. I’m a competitor. I’ve been facing adversity ever since I was six or seven years old. I’ve been fighting ever since I was a little kid. This is nothing new to me. It will be a great night for me but no different from any other fight that I’ve had throughout my boxing career.”
DERRICK JAMES, Spence’s Trainer
“Ugas’ trainer is looking for the same things I’m looking for on film. Salas is smart. He’s supposed to look for patterns and see what kind of shots the opponents throw. That’s what trainers are supposed to do. I’ll watch some of his fights; I care enough. To pick up on tendencies and shots, he throws and how he throws his punches so I can mimic them. And I’ll let Errol know that this is coming, or that is coming.
“Ugas’ biggest threat coming into this fight is what you can’t see. It’s his heart and his grit. He desires to want to be great.
“We can go up to whatever weight he wants to go. We spar heavyweights consistently. Errol’s very physical as a fighter, and he can fight up to 160 and maybe even higher. I’m not saying that’s what we’re going to do. He’d probably be comfortable with that because we are comfortable being in there with bigger guys all the time.”
ISMAEL SALAS, Ugas’ Trainer
“This camp has been outstanding. We have been able to prepare in the best way for what is going to be a huge fight and the biggest fight in the 147-pound division right now. We feel that our preparation has been excellent, with no real adversity whatsoever.
“Ugas is one hundred percent ready for this fight. Mentally we are powerful, and we are prepared for any style. Every fighter has a different style, and types make fights. We are comfortable fighting a southpaw. Ugas showed and proved that he could already beat a southpaw in Manny Pacquiao.
“Spence is a warrior. We have two front-footed guys, but the one difference is that Ugas is more of a counterpuncher. Spence is physically amazing, and he’s strong mentally. But he’s never shown that he can move like Ugas.”
STEPHEN ESPINOZA, President of SHOWTIME SPORTS®
“The welterweight division has long been one of boxing’s most glamorous, exciting, and popular divisions. This Saturday represents a significant step in figuring out who is the best 147-pound fighter in today’s sport. A place where fighters like Sugar Ray Robinson, Sugar Ray Leonard, Oscar De La Hoya, and Floyd Mayweather have ruled.
“Three world titles are at stake, and a three-title unification perfectly fits what SHOWTIME is doing in 2022. That’s putting the best against the best in the most competitive matchups. This past weekend, we had a thrilling Fight of the Year contender with Sebastian Fundora and Erickson Lubin that people are still talking about. That’s what happens when you put two elite fighters in the ring against each other. You get that kind of action and that kind of competition. That’s exactly what we’re going to see on Saturday night.
“One of the disadvantages of having such a great main event is sometimes people overlook the undercard. In the co-feature, we have an inspiring young fighter in Isaac Cruz, coming off giving ‘Tank’ Davis the most brutal fight of his career. He is establishing himself as a force to be reckoned with.
“We’re here for Spence and Ugas. Two former Olympians. Two of the best in the division. Two outstanding family men. Two guys who are a credit to their sport. You’ve seen them on ALL ACCESS. We thank both of them and their camps for letting us in and allowing us to portray who they are outside the ring. We couldn’t be prouder to be associated with this event. Two fine young men. Two great athletes. Two elite boxers. One iconic venue with three world titles at stake. It’s an event not to be missed.”