Detroit bantamweight action hero James Gordon Smith (11-0, 6 KOs) knows what boxing fans in Detroit have come to expect from him… and he doesn’t mind one bit.
“People want to see you exciting in there; we are in the hurt business,” said Smith. “They don’t want to pay to see a guy running the whole fight. It’s not exciting that way. I fight the way fans love. You make more money that way.”
The thrill-a-minute Smith will face Kiskunfelegyhaza, Hungary’s Szilveszter Ajtai (10-3-1, 5 KOs) in the co-main event of promoter Dmitriy Salita’s special Sunday edition of his “Detroit Brawl” series on January 22, 2017, at Masonic Temple in Detroit.
“I like to fight. All that boxing and trying to look pretty. It’s not for me. I’d rather get in there and go to war. It’s more exciting.”
26-year-old Smith was 110-9 as an amateur and won four national championships and two silvers and a bronze in the National Golden Gloves.
“Once I turned 21, I started realizing my fighting style was more of a pro style. I was handling guys and then they were saying I was losing on points. That’s when I realized amateur boxing wasn’t for me anymore. I talked to my coaches, Keith Jackson and Theotrice Chambers, and they told me it was time.”
Smith, who is hopeful of making his national television debut in the near future, says he’s been fine tuning his style, while leaving all the thrills in place.
“We’ve been working on defense and not getting hit as much and on putting punches together. I’ll be trying to average 100 to120 punches a round. I would love to fight on ShoBox this year. Dmitriy Salita is looking for a date for me in mid-March. I just want to fight on TV. With my style and the way I fight, all it would take is for fans to see me fight one time and they’ll see what I can do. All I need is the right opponent. It’ll be beautiful. It will be like Micky Ward against Gatti.”
Smith also says he’s not worried about competing in his first eight-round fight.
“It’s a good fight for my first eight-rounder. He’s a good fighter. I’ve seen him a couple times. He looked decent on YouTube. He’s got good hand speed. When he’s in shape, he lets his hands go and has good boxing skills, but I’m always in great shape, so I don’t really worry about the rounds. I get in as good of shape as you can be in and then I throw punches the whole fight, no matter how many rounds. Plus, it’s very exciting to fight in front of my friends and family. It gives me the extra motivation to work even harder. You never want to look bad at home.”
In the night’s eight-round main event, Detroit’s perennial welterweight gate keeper and fan favorite Lanardo “Pain Server” Tyner (30-10-2, 19 KOs) will face Nagykanizsa, Hungary’s Istvan Dernanecz (10-4, 7 KOs).
In one of the main supporting bouts, cruiserweight Alexey Zubov (13-1, 8 KOs), from Magnitogorsk, Russia, will face Budapest, Hungary’s Andras Csomor (18-14-1, 14 KOs).
Also seeing action will be former cruiserweight world title challenger “Hurricane” Junior Wright (15-2-1, 12 KOs) from Evanston, Illinois, making his heavyweight debut against Detroit’s Damon McCreary (15-6, 11 KOs) in a six-rounder.
In a bantamweight six-rounder, undefeated bantamweight Ja’Rico “Great Lakes King” O’Quinn (4-0, 3 KOs) will take on Chicago’s Angel Carvajal (2-5).
In a super lightweight four, Detroit’s rejuvenated “Lightning” Larry Ventus (7-11-1, 3 KOs) will face Florida’s iron-jawed Jesus Lule (9-20-1, 1 KO).
Popular and undefeated super welterweight Ardreal Holmes (4-0, 2 KOs) of Flint, Michigan, is scheduled to fight Macon, Georgia’s Bryan Goldsby (3-1).
Undefeated Alabama super featherweight Dwayne Zeigler (5-0-1, 5 KOs) will face Aaron Hollis (3-3, 2 KOs) of Cincinnati in a four-round super featherweight fight.
Kronk welterweight Jacob Bonas (2-0-1, 1 KO), Toledo super middleweight DeAndre Ware (8-0, 6 KOs) and undefeated Detroit heavyweight Marcus Carter (1-0, 1 KO) will face opponents that are yet to be announced.