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Q&A: Bermane Stiverne

12
Jan

After months of posturing in mid-December it was announced that Bermane Stiverne would defend his WBC heavyweight title against mandatory challenger Deontay Wilder. The fight takes place this Saturday on Showtime 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.

When RingTV.com spoke with Stiverne (24-1-1, 21 knockouts) he seemed tired of the hyperbole surrounding Wilder and wasn’t in an overly talkative mood following an intense workout.

Stiverne, 36, won the WBC title last May stopping former foe Chris Arreola in six rounds.

There is no love lost between the pair, as revealed in Showtime’s Stiverne-Wilder “All Access” show.

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The Showtime tripleheader will also feature WBC junior featherweight titlist Leo Santa Cruz looking to make the fourth successful defense of his title against Jesus Ruiz, while up-and-coming Amir Imam meets dangerous Fidel Maldonado Jr. in a 10-round junior welterweight bout.

Anson Wainwright – What are your thoughts on fighting Wilder?

Bermane Stiverne – The only thing that matters is I’m fighting at home and headlining at the MGM.

AW – You have seen him fight. When you assess his strengths and weaknesses, what do you see?

BS – Nothing! I don’t really want to give too much away. Wait until fight night and everybody will see.

AW – You have a tendency to pull back to the ropes and let your opponent come on to you. That would appear a dangerous tactic against a noted puncher like Wilder?

BS – (laughs) Let him believe I’m going to fight that way. I’m not about to give away my game plan for this fight.

AW – Wilder has had just 58 pro rounds. Do you feel his career has been manufactured to this point?

BS – I feel no way about that or his career. It won’t matter if it has or hasn’t been manufactured when we get in the ring.

AW – Would you agree that with both of you possessing explosive power, it would appear that whoever lands first will win and the fight won’t go the distance?

BS – This ain’t about power; it’s about skills and being smart.

AW – You beat Chris Arreola for the WBC championship. Tell us about that fight.

BS – It was one of the greatest moments in my life. Chris and I put on a show for the fans, back-to- back, unlike a certain heavyweight (Wladimir Klitschko).

AW – What did it mean to you to become a world champion? How did it alter your life?

BS – Greatness. It meant the world to me. I was able to accomplish and be crowned with the most prestigious championship in the history of sports, as the WBC heavyweight champion of the world.

As far as my lifestyle, I keep it very simple, and for that reason my life hasn’t really changed very much since I became world champion.

AW – The Arreola fight was last May. It took a long time for the fight with Wilder to finally come about. Was this frustrating for you?

BS – I never got to that point. I knew it was going to happen one day.

AW – You are promoted by Don King. His stable isn’t what it once was. What is it like working with him?

BS – DK is still the best out there and even today, at his age, nobody in boxing can promote like him. He is truly one of a kind.

AW – Do you feel you’re keeping DKP relevant in boxing?

BS – No. His legacy speaks for itself.

AW – How have you spent your time since your title win last May?

BS – Well spent with family and friends, but I went right back to the gym where I belong.

AW – In closing do you have a message for Wilder?

BS – No, but my fist does.

Questions and/or comments can be sent to Anson at [email protected] and you can follow him at www.twitter.com/AnsonWainwright

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