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NEW YORK – Two of the world’s best 140-pound boxers in the sport – Adrien Broner and Mikey Garcia – participated in a media conference call on Thursday to discuss the news that they would square off against one another on Saturday, July 29, on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING®.
A three-division world champion at the age of 23, and one of the youngest four-division world champions in boxing history, Broner remains one of the most accomplished and popular athletes – and perhaps the most polarizing – in the sport today. Broner (33-2, 24 KOs) is unbeaten at or below 140 pounds with his only two losses coming against welterweight world champions Marcos Maidana and Shawn Porter.
The 29-year-old Mikey Garcia is undefeated (36-0, 30 KOs) and coming off a WBC lightweight world title he won in January. Garcia is moving up in weight for the second time in just three fights to challenge Broner.
Adrien Broner vs. Mikey Garcia is presented by Premier Boxing Champions. A venue has yet to be determined for the highly anticipated matchup.
Also joining the call was Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President & General Manager of SHOWTIME Sports.
Here is what Broner had to say on the call on Thursday:
“I mean, I’ve done a lot. I’ve done a lot in the sport already at a young age. I’ve watched Mikey Garcia come up before and at the same time I came up. I always want to fight the best. The best fight the best and that’s what’s going on today. This fight is going to be a tremendous fight and I’m bringing my A-game. I know a lot of people are probably counting me out.”
Q: Can you give me your perspective of how this fight was brought to your attention? How easy was the fight to make?
A: “I just see two fighters that got chips on their shoulders and I’m ready to put on another great show of boxing. I’m tired of sitting around and watching everybody else fight each other. I want to fight the best too, so let’s do it.”
Q: Can you just give me your impressions on what it will take to make 140 pounds and to do it so you’re competitive and strong at that weight against Mikey, who’s going to put on a couple of pounds?
A: “Making the weight is not going to be a problem. My last fight is coming from 180-plus. I’ve kept my weight down and I’ve actually been trying to fight somebody earlier than July. But since it’s July, I’ve kept my body in okay shape and I won’t have a problem making the weight.”
Q: Do you see you being more experienced against bigger guys as an advantage for you going into a fight that most people would consider a pretty tough fight?
A: “I don’t look at this fight like that. Mikey is a great opponent and a great fighter. As long as I’m at my A-game, I’ll be okay. That’s just how I feel. I’m taking my career more seriously and I’m just ready to put on a great show.”
Q: Were there discussions about the fight being contested at a higher weight?
A: “I have no problem with making the weight. I have a reason. This fight gives me a reason to make 140 pounds. I will make the weight, no problem. Just like when I fought for the title, I made the weight easy.”
Q: What have you seen from Mikey Garcia as far as his development goes since coming back?
A: “A kid who’s still growing in boxing just like me. We all make our mistakes and we try to get better every fight. You have two men that are in their prime and at the highest level of their career and they want to fight each other. So, let’s do it”
Q: Do you feel that having fought at a higher weight in the past is an advantage for you? Does it help you in any way?
A: “I’m not coming into this fight looking at having an advantage because I’ve fought at a higher weight. At the end of the day, I’ve got to be 100 hundred percent and that’s all I’m worried about.”
Q: Does a challenge like this motivate you more?
A: “I love it. I’ve faced adversity so many times in this game. Sometimes I fell short, but I got right back up and kept fighting.”
Q: How much credit do you sense you’re getting for embracing this fight?
A: “Honestly, in all due respect to every reporter out there, I feel like I really don’t get as much respect as I should because of my last fight…the guy that I fought [Adrian Granados], he was a guy a lot of people skipped past…and I’m like, ‘You know what, I’m going to fight him.’ Everybody felt like I wasn’t taking a tough fight. I knew he was tough and I fought him and beat him and now I’m taking another tough fight after that in Mikey Garcia.”
Q: How important was it for you to take a tough fight like this?
A: “I want to fight them all. In the beginning of my career I was very anxious to fight everybody and as I’ve gotten older I’ve learned to just take my time and roll down the hill slow and get them all… And this is where it starts.”
Q: Do you feel like fighting [Garcia’s] style is going to require a lot of patience on your part?
A: “If you ask me, I’m the guy that’s very defensive. I really don’t get hit that much. Only when I decide to stand in the middle, but I’m very hard to hit myself. I think this fight is going to be two boxers with high IQ’s who are going to put on a great show of boxing.”
Q: Is it going to be a fight determined by footwork and ring generalship, would you agree with that?
A: “I wouldn’t say all of that. Everybody doesn’t fight the same every night when they go in the ring. Once I get in there and make my adjustments and once he gets in there and tries to make his adjustments, we’re going to let the fight play out.”
Q: Do you feel like Mikey is a stiff puncher and is that something that you have to be careful of with his punching power?
A: “Anybody is a puncher whether… It all hurts. I’m one to tell the truth. I don’t want to get hit by nobody. I don’t care if it’s Paulie Malignaggi…I don’t want to feel none of their punches.”
Q: “What do you say about your power at this weight when you get the proper training in and you’re on weight and you’re on target?
A: “Just check my record. I’m undefeated. There’s only a couple literally, where people lasted. Everybody knows in the boxing game: Once Adrien Broner is focused and I’m on track and doing everything correctly, nobody will beat me. Only I beat myself and I’m tired of coming up short and selling myself short.”
Q: If you are focused for this fight and you get down to 140, can you just talk about how you’ll feel when that happens and what you feel your power is when you do that?
A: “Independence day in July. I’m bringing fireworks.”
Q: Realistically, how difficult will it be for you to make weight at 140 pounds and do you think Garcia has the upper hand or advantage?
A: “No, I’ll make weight easy. Honestly, there is no disadvantage or advantages in this fight. This fight will come down to the best prepared boxer.”
Q: What is it about the sport of boxing that has put a chip on your shoulder? What are some of the things about the sport and the business side of it that you don’t like and that you’d like to see change?
A: “It’s really not the business side because the business is going good. I love Stephen to death, that’s my uncle. But as far as the sport, I just feel like they don’t put enough respect on my name. With all of my accomplishments in this game, I’m the one the kids want to be now. Because coming up, everyone wanted to be like Floyd and now coming up all the kids want to be like Adrian Broner. It’s okay though, this fight is just to show people that I’m still here and that I still got what it takes to take over the game of boxing after Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao.”
Q: You’re boxing a lot more than you did in the last year, has anything changed for you?
A: “A lot changed, I’ve gotten older. I’m getting wiser, more mature. This next half of my career, I’m just focused on doing things the correct way. The first half I tried to do things my way and it worked but I could have done better, but I want to try and do everything correct.”
Q: Will you be training in Colorado as usual?
A: “Colorado Springs. My last four fights I haven’t been in Colorado. The last fight I’ve done in Colorado was the Maidana fight. I’ve been in DC. I’m going back to where I can focus on just strictly boxing because I want this to be one of the best performance of my career. I feel like my back is against the wall and it’s time to fight out.”
Closing comment: “Get some cameras my way, I’m ready to perform.”