31.08.06 – Unlike previous media gatherings in advance of the September 2nd “NO RISK, NO REWARD” boxing event, today’s final press conference at LA’s Staples Center featured little in the way of the usual banter and personal insults. Instead, main event heavyweights James “Lights Out” Toney and Samuel “The Nigerian Nightmare” Peter, and co-featured IBF Featherweight champion Eric “Mighty Mouse” Aiken and his challenger, NABF champion Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero and their trainers brought to today’s media session a “The fun is over, let’s get down to business” approach just three days before their respective showdowns at Staples to be televised on “Showtime Championship Boxing” – with a few comparatively mild exceptions..
“For this show I tell everybody on Saturday, September 2nd to come out and see a really good fight. Enough respect,” Peter (26-1, 22 KOs) succinctly insisted.
“Here we go,” Toney (69-4-3, 43 KOs) offered. “We got two days left. Can’t wait. All the talking that’s been going on the last couple of months. All the telephone and the papers is going to cease and desist Saturday night. I’m gonna be right there. I ain’t going nowhere. That’s how I fight. I’m a real fighter (looking at Peter), something you ain’t used to.”
Following the press conference, Peter was heard guaranteeing KCBS-TV reporter Jim Hill that he would knock out Toney in the fourth round. “Tell him to come on and bring it. I’m ready,” Toney barked. “He’s doing all the talking away from me. I’m tired of talking I want to kick his a**.”
Toney’s trainer, Freddie Roach, delivered perhaps the closest thing to a knockout blow on the crowded dais when divulging his impressions of Peter.
“I’ve been watching a lot of tape on Sam Peter over and over,” Roach said. “His best punch is hitting someone right in the back of the head. That’s what he’s knocked most of his opponents out with. I’m glad we have a strong referee in this fight and a strong commission that will not let that illegal blow go. Because he knocks out guys with a lot of illegal blows behind the head. That’s all I’m worried about. Otherwise, James Toney is in great shape.”
“I’d like to thank Dan Goossen for giving us this opportunity to take advantage of his NABF champion (Guerrero),” Aiken (16-4, 12 KOs), who will be making the first defense of his IBF Featherweight title, acknowledged. “We plan on giving Showtime one of the greatest featherweight championship of the world fights that you’ve all seen. I’ve had enormous strength training and personal training. I knocked out guys in a week and a half, two-weeks notice who were supposed to be the greatest fighters coming up out there. And I’ve had 8-9 weeks to train for this fight, so we’ll see what happens.”
Guerrero (18-1-1, 11 KOs), who grew up in nearby Gilroy, CA and will have a big local following rooting him on, said “I’m doing all the work I need to do to win this fight and come Saturday night you’ll be hearing: ‘And the new IBF Featherweight champion of the world, Robert ‘The Ghost’ Guerrero.’”
Promoter Dan Goossen, along with Dan Beckerman of Staples Center, proclaimed that ticket sales are strong for the Labor Day Weekend event Saturday night. But there are good seats still available.
“We’re virtually sold out of the $300 tickets where we had over 3,000 of them,” Goossen revealed. “All the floor is pretty much clean. Fans are excited about this because it is a great heavyweight fight along with a very tough IBF featherweight title fight.”
A WBC Heavyweight Elimination bout, “No Risk, No Reward” is co-promoted by Goossen Tutor Promotions, Don King Productions and Duva Boxing and will be the main event on the live “Showtime Championship Boxing” telecast.
Tickets priced at $300, $150, $75, and $50 are available at STAPLES CENTER box office or www.Ticketmaster.com.