Chris Arreola: “One year from now I’m expecting to be a heavyweight champion, period!”


by Geoffrey Ciani (Interviewed by Jenna J & Geoffrey Ciani) – Last week’s 121st edition of On the Ropes Boxing Radio (brought to you by CWH Promotions) featured an exclusive interview with heavyweight contender Chris Arreola (30-2, 26 KOs) who is scheduled to face Nagy Aguilera (16-5, 11 KOs) on May 14 at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California. Arreola spoke about his upcoming fight, reflected on past bouts, talked about his future, and shared opinions on the current boxing scene. Here are some excerpts from that interview:

Regarding his May 14 fight against Nagy Aguilera and whether he believes he might underestimate him:

“Oh no! Of course not! You can’t underestimate anybody period, especially in the heavyweight division because all it takes is just one shot in order for you to get knocked out. So I got to expect the best Nagy Aguilera out there because he’s going to come out there hungry and he’s going to want to get a win, especially to get a win against me would be a big thing for him.”

On what things he was working on in training camp for this particular fight:

“You know the main thing is throwing combinations. Going back to the old me and making sure I get combinations because I’m really not a one punch knockout artist. I was believing my own hype that I was a knockout artist which I’m not! All of my knockouts have come off of combination punches, not just one punch.”

His views on what the Aguilera fight will mean to him in the bigger heavyweight picture:

“The main thing is I want to make sure that I stay busy this year. I want to fight four or five times this year making sure that my name stays out there and that everybody knows I’m still a force to be reckoned with. I’m new and determined and I’m the new Chris Arreola.”

On what it would mean for him to get another chance to fight for the heavyweight title:

“To me it’s not about getting the chance. It’s about earning that spot and earning that title shot. It’s not about getting a chance, it’s earning it! That’s my main motivation is earning a heavyweight title shot so when people see me fight for it they know that I earned it.”

Regarding which specific champion he would be most interested in fighting:

“It doesn’t really matter to me because champions change. So by the time it’s my turn it could be anybody. It could be Tomasz Adamek again and I would love to beat the sh*t out of him.”

Regarding his twelve round loss against Tomasz Adamek and what he would do differently if given a rematch:

“The main thing that happened in that fight was I got full of myself. I really honestly got full of myself and I just thought I could steamroll through him. He didn’t beat me. I beat myself. His preparation beat me. He came in there in better condition than I did. He had that extra gas in those last few rounds and I didn’t. He came in there determined to win and I came in there expecting to win, not determined to win. So that’s the main thing. That loss eats me up inside every day. I’m still waiting for my gift wrapped because I gave him a present. I gave him a present to fight for a world title shot. I gave it to him! I handed it to him! I gift wrapped it!

His views on the heavyweight unification fight between Wladimir Klitschko and David Haye:

“You know I think David Haye has a very good shot and I’m going with David Haye. Haye moves very good and he throws good combinations and I think he’s going to give Wladimir something different to look at, something that he hasn’t seen in a very long time. So I’m giving it out to David Haye.”

On what he believes he needs to do in order to earn himself another heavyweight title shot:

“I really want to fight some of these European fighters like (Denis) Boytsov and the guy (Robert Helenius) that just knocked out (Samuel) Peter, and all of them guys. You can gain a lot of recognition. I believe we should just settle it once and for all. I would love to fight one of the European fighters. I don’t want to fight an American fighter. I would love to fight a European fighter who is ranked in the top five or top ten in the world. That’s one of the main things I really want to do.”

Whether he was surprised by the way that Robert Helenius knocked out Sam Peter:

“You know you can’t be surprised by anybody being knocked out in the heavyweight division at all. Like I said before all it takes is one shot, just one punch! Hasim Rahman knocked out Lennox Lewis and it made him millions just off of one punch. So all it takes is one punch.”

On what he expects to weight on May 14 come fight night:

“The main thing is I’m going to be a Chris Arreola that’s throwing combinations. That’s my main motivation is being the old school Chris Arreola, but I’m really expecting to come in the low 230s. That’s where I’m expecting to be, but if I don’t make it I know I’ll be in the 230s regardless. The main thing is to fight and to throw combinations.”

On where he expects to be one year from now in the heavyweight landscape:

“One year from now I’m expecting to be a heavyweight champion, period! It’s not a goal, it’s not this or that. I know where I’m going to be at and I know I’m going to be a heavyweight champion and I’m going to work my ass off to be a heavyweight champion.”

Regarding what he feels he could have done differently to be more successful in his fight against Vitali Klitschko:

“I would have probably waited. I probably would have waited to fight him. Mentally I was ready but physically I was not ready to fight a man like Vitali Klitschko. You know he was just so much smarter in the ring than I was. He adapted so much better than I did. Even fighting backwards he was a great fighter. I was one of the only fighters who backed up Vitali Klitschko like I did in that fight. I just recently had seen it for the first time in years and man, he kicked my ass!”

Whether he believes Tomasz Adamek has any chance of beating Vitali Klitschko:

“No! It’s an easy answer to me. It’s no. You can’t teach height. That’s one thing you can’t teach. You cannot teach height and he already has skills. So you add the skills with the height and he’s just a freak of nature sometimes. With Tomasz Adamek he’s not a real big heavyweight at all. I was able to push him around and I’m not as strong as Vitali is so I got to give it up to Vitali.”

Regarding the fighters out there today whom he most enjoys watching as a fan:

“You know I love watching the little guys. I love watching Manny Pacquiao. He’s a great fighter. I like Andre Berto and one of the good friends of mine is Timothy Bradley. It’s great! I’m seeing how hard they train and where they’re at now and the things that they’ve achieved. It gives you great honor to say at one point like Andre Berto and Timothy Bradley and the Peterson brothers and all of that, we went to and fought as amateurs in different tournaments together. We weren’t in the same weight class, but it’s pretty cool to see childhood friends you grew up with do stuff like that.”

On whether he thinks Manny Pacquiao is going to have an easy time against Sugar Shane Mosley:

“No, I don’t think he’s going to steamroll him. I think he’s going to beat him but steamroll? No, and if he does then it even adds more to his legacy because nobody has stopped Sugar Shane Mosley. So if he can accomplish that it’s just going to add to his legacy. People are going to try and say he’s old, or he’s this and that. Regardless, Pacquiao stopped Mosley and no one else stopped him if he does that.”

Regarding how many fights he realistically believes he needs before earning another title shot:

“Well I got beat Nagy, first things first. After Nagy about two more fights, one or two more fights and in those two fights like I said I want to at least fight one of the top European guys, if not two European guys. That’s my goal.”

His official prediction for his May 14 fight against Nagy Aguilera:

“I’m going in there to knock him out and I hope he does the same. I’m not trying to disrespect him in any kind of way, but I’m hoping he does come in there and try to knock me out because that’s only going to make for a great fight for both of us.”




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