The August 9 Barclays Center fight card will have plenty of D.C. flavor with District-natives Lamont Peterson, Anthony Peterson plus Maryland’s D’Mitrius Ballard all appearing in the event. As they prepare for their respective bouts, the three boxers held an open media workout in Washington, D.C. on Thursday afternoon.
“Each fight out I try to get better and better, I add new things to my camp. I’m focused more on my craft. I’m not a fighter who wins a belt and will be satisfied with that. I want to get better each fight.
“I’ve seen Edgar Santana fight; he can definitely fight. People haven’t seen him so they don’t think he deserves it. But he’s been around for a while and still fighting. It’s a tough task to stay in this game for 10 years.
“Camp has gone well. I’m feeling really good right now. I’m confident, there’s nothing else I can do in this camp. I’m ready.
“Without winning this fight, there’s no (Danny) Garcia fight. Even if I win there might not be, so all I can do is focus on Edgar Santana.
“I’m showing my dedication to the sport; there’s no time for haircuts or anything. It’s 12 hours a day in the gym.
“The average person spars maybe 100-150 rounds max during camp. I’m more of a 400-500 round type of guy. I’m always sparring so any kind of layoff doesn’t bother me.
“It’s good to see my brother fight. I wish it wasn’t on my card because I never get to see him fight. But I’m happy he’s in the ring because he loves the sport and it makes him happy.
“There’s not a lot of guys you can go to in the 140-pound weight class that are all-time great fighters. My goal is to put my name on that list. Winning all the belts is the way to do it, even though they don’t mean that much to me.
“All these years of boxing, no New York fights. Sometimes they say you have to wait for the things you want. I waited 10 years and now I’m here.
“I always had the hunger to fight, even during my layoff. I never stopped watching boxing, I never stopped being hungry because boxing is in my blood.
“I wanted to walk away from boxing plenty of times; after the (Brandon) Rios fight I wanted to walk away. But after all these years, I’m built for this and it reminds me to stick with it.
“In my 34 fights I’ve never asked about who I’m fighting, I just show up and show off.
“I see myself as a world champion. All I got to do is stay healthy, stay in shape and it will happen by the end of the year. Anyone in the lightweight division is an option.
“I wasn’t sure if I was ready before the layoff to be a champion. I would have crumbled under all that goes along with it. I have more of a sensation for temptation than my brother. I pick boxing over sensation though.”
“I’m truly blessed to be in the position I am, to sign on and be fighting on these big-time championship cards. It’s a dream to be with Golden Boy Promotions, any person in the United States would dream of being promoted by them.
“Right now my diet is right and everything is going well with my conditioning coach so I think 168 is where I’ll be for a long time.
“Training has been going very well. I got right back into the gym after my last fight in April. We’re working hard and excited to get back in the ring and show my skills and timing.
“We train for any opponent, veteran or not. Regardless of the opponent we’re going to stick to the game plan.
“Every time I get in the ring I have to showcase. Lamont Peterson, Bernard Hopkins are great examples and I can pick up little things from them throughout these promotions.”
“Going into this fight everybody has been doing their job. Anthony and Lamont have been looking real good and no injuries so far. We’re looking for great fights up at Barclays which is a great venue for boxing.
“New York is next door to us, both Anthony and Lamont had a lot of amateur fights in that area so it’s great to be fighting there. It’s both of their first times fighting in New York as professionals, which is a beautiful thing. We have lots of family and friends there.
“The energy was very good last time I was at Barclays and I love a venue with good energy.
“We watched Santana, they almost fought years ago. Lamont respects all fighters, you have to respect any fighter that gets into that squared circle. Lamont understands what could happen and that we’ve been in Santana’s position before and that anything could happen.”