NABA and USNBC cruiserweight champion Matt "Too Smooth" Godfrey (12-0, 7 KOS) leaves today for Los Angeles, where he'll finish training at the Wild Card Gym for his September 23 unification bout against WBC Continental Americas title-holder Danny "Boy" Batchelder (24-2-1, 11 KOs). Godfrey-Batchelder headlines "Night of the Rising Stars, promoted by Jimmy Burchfield's Classic Entertainment & Sports, Inc, at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford.
The 25-year-old Godfrey is now rated No. 10 by the World Boxing Council, where he is the top ranked American, as well as No. 14 by the World Boxing Association.
"I've been getting ready for this fight since the beginning of the summer because it kept getting pushed back," Godfrey explained. "I'm ready and have prepared for this fight harder than any I've ever had. I don't get carried away about ratings, I'm focused on the guy I'm fighting and let my promoter and manager worry about ratings.
"Batchelder's a great pro who is really tough, slick and faster than he looks on television. I still have two weeks to train for the fight, but it'll probably go the distance. Whether it goes 12 rounds or ends in a knockout, I'm going to win the fight."
Rated No. 12 by the WBC, Batchelder's last fight was a loss by 10-round decision, as a late replacement, to 24-1 heavyweight Brian Minto.
"Batchelder has been around and he has a lot of experience," Godfrey's manager Bret Hallenbeck said. "He is in our path for glory. Batchelder was rated higher than Matt when we agreed to the fight, but he's behind us now because he lost his last fight to a heavyweight. This is a very meaningful fight for us because a win against a quality opponent like Batchelder will move Matt up higher in the ratings and closer to a world title shot.
Visit www.mattgodfreyboxing.com for more information about Matt Godfrey.
For "Night of the Rising Stars" ticket information, go to www.cesboxing.com; call CES (401.724.2253) or the Connecticut Convention Center (860.249.6000).