Brooklyn-native, unbeaten Frank “Notorious” Galarza weighed-in at 154 pounds and Belgium’s Sheldon “The Closer” Moore measured 153 ¼ pounds during Thursday’s official weigh-in for the main event of this Friday’s ShoBox: The New Generation.
Galarza (16-0-2, 10 KOs), regarded by many as “The Brooklyn Rocky,” and Moore (13-2-1, 9 KOs) will square off in the eight-round super welterweight headliner of the televised tripleheader from the Aviator Sports and Events Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Undefeated power-punching middleweight Ievgen “The Ukrainian Lion” Khytrov (9-0, 9 KOs) tipped the scales at 161 ½ pounds and fellow unbeaten Aaron “Heavy Metal” Coley (9-0-1, 6 KOs), of Hayward, Calif., measured 160 ½ pounds for their eight-round middleweight bout.
In the opening fight of the telecast, blue-chip super middleweight prospect Sergiy “The Technician” Derevyanchenko (4-0, 3 KOs/World Series of Boxing: 23-1, 7 KOs) will take on once-beaten Alan “Amenaza/Threat” Campa (13-1, 1 NC, 9 KOs) in an eight-round super middleweight match. Derevyanchenko, of Ukraine and now training in Brooklyn with Khytrov, measured 163 ¼ pounds while Mexico’s Campa weighed-in at 165 pounds.
“We had some great sparring with guys like Daniel Jacobs, Sadam Ali, Khytrov. They always give me top tough work. That’s top competition right there. Fighting guys like that builds my confidence. If I can hang in there with them then I can hang with anyone. They’re going to help to bring me to another level. I feed off their energy.
“Moore is an aggressive fighter, but I’m a come-forward guy, too. I can be aggressive, but smart aggressive. Not just aggressive to punch and throw punches wildly. It’s more being smart, using my defense, my offense and countering when he makes mistakes.
“I try not to think about fighting in the main event in Brooklyn, but it helps and it definitely motivates me. I mean, it doesn’t get any better than that – fighting in my home in the main event.
“It’s my backyard, so I have to put on a show. It doesn’t give me jitters because I’ve fought in my home before, but the main event is different. I just need to do my job.
“For me, it’s will and skill. I bring my skill level to the next level. How bad do I want it? Am I going to perform well enough to move to the next level and face those top contenders?
“I want to face the top prospects so I can earn a spot as a contender. But I need to get through this guy first.”
“The main reason why I came all the way to the United States is because here is where boxing is at its best. I’m really excited about this opportunity. Being on SHOWTIME as a main event is huge for me.
“It’s not going to be easy, I’m fighting a guy from Brooklyn in Brooklyn in his back yard. But I’ve been in this situation before, I’ve fought abroad many times before and I’m not intimidated. It’s another day at the office for me.
“This is it for me, there’s no turning back. I have to win. I just don’t see myself losing tomorrow.
“I’ve seen a couple Galarza videos on YouTube. He was more of a brawler at the beginning of his career. Now, he’s a more disciplined boxer. That can backfire sometimes, something to watch out.
“You’ll see fireworks and excitement. I’m not going to look for the knockout. I think it’s a bad strategy to do that. If it comes, it comes. I’ll be looking to win, no matter what. This is a very big fight for me, so it’ll be all about winning, impressing and being at my best.”
“The atmosphere training in Big Bear was amazing. It was one of the best training camps I’ve had. I’ve never been through a camp in the amateurs like that.
“I had a chance to meet Gennady (Golovkin) in Big Bear and we spoke and actually became pretty close. We talked about training regime, stuff athletes talk about. I loved it there.
“The adjustment from amateurs to pros has been fine. The only difference is handling the different rounds and realizing that you have to pace yourself for these eight, 10, 12 round fights.
“The best time to knock a guy out is in the first two rounds when they aren’t warmed up yet. I tried against (Jorge) Melendez but I couldn’t get him out. I just realized I needed to pace myself for the other six rounds and work the body. It was nice to get those rounds and experience against a tough fighter.
“I know he (Coley) is a pretty hard-hitting southpaw. I assume that he won’t come forward, but maybe he’ll surprise me. He has a few knockouts, but I’m going to watch him, learn and adapt.
“I faced southpaws in the amateurs. His style won’t give me any issues. I could even switch to a southpaw stance if I need to.
“Personally, health allowing, I think I should be a contender by the end of 2015. But I put all my trust into my team. They know best. My job is just to train and prepare for everything they put in front of me.
“Yes, 100 percent I’d like to face Gennady. To be the best you have to fight the best. And right now I consider him to be the best 160 pound fighter in the world.”
“Fighting on TV for me is a big deal. When I was little, my father used to throw fight parties to watch big fights and tomorrow he’s throwing one for me. That alone makes me so proud. I’ll have my own viewing party. I’m fighting on national television, on SHOWTIME. That’s such of big deal for me. This is my breakout. This is the sign I’m made it.
“I stay in shape all year round, but for the past two months I’ve been taking it to the extreme. Training hard, sparring even harder.
“I’ve been working very hard. I’ve sparred with world champions and I’ve been doing well. I think this is my time to step up and show everybody how good I am.
“I’m predicting there will be a stoppage in the later rounds.”
“The competition I faced in the WSB was, for the most part, the best fighters in the world. So far, the guys I’ve faced in the pros don’t have that resume, that skill level. So I think I’ve fought in more than just four pro fights.
“I’m working hard in the gym to make the transition from amateur to pro. I’m taking it step-by-step. I don’t want to jump the gun or make a mistake too fast. I’m looking forward to increasing my level of opposition gradually.
“I’ve seen some of his (Campa) fights. In some fights he boxes different than in other fights. We’ll see what he does in the ring and adjust accordingly. But I don’t think he can bring anything that I haven’t seen before. But he’s a Mexican fighter so we know he won’t give up.
“I’m going to show what I’m worth. I’ve been preparing for this my whole life. Now is my chance to build my fan base and show what I can do in the ring.”
“This is my first fight in the U.S., and I’m planning to take full advantage of this opportunity.
“My training was intense, a lot of running, especially in the mountains. I worked on my conditioning and my speed. I’m at the best shape I’ve ever been.
“When I found out about my opponent, I watched video on him and I know I’m better than him. I think my main advantages are age and speed. My opponent is 29, I’m 23. I’m younger and quicker and I’m not about to make it easy for him.
“I’m going to read him in the early rounds and, if I feel he’s not hurting me, I’ll go the distance.
“This fight is a huge step-up for me. I see it as key fight. I feel it might be a make or break for me. We’ll see, I might get a chance to deliver a knockout and that might spark some attention in the boxing world.”