Ireland's Olympic hero Michael "Mick" Conlan and undefeated welterweight contender Alex "El Cholo" Saucedo held a Media Workout today at Wild Card West Boxing Club.
Before their respective workouts, both fighters spoke with the media about their upcoming fights at Madison Square Garden. Joining the fighters were Conlan's trainer, Manny Robles, and filmmaker Peter Berg, a principal in Churchill Management, which co-manages Saucedo.
Conlan, 25, a two-time Olympian, a 2012 Olympic bronze medalist and a former World Amateur Champion from Belfast, Ireland, will be making his pro debut in the main event of a special St. Patrick's Day card at The Theater at Madison Square Garden, Friday, March 17.
Saucedo (23-0, 14 KOs), from Oklahoma City, will be making his Garden debut on the same card. Saucedo, 22, world-rated No. 14 by the WBO, is trained by 2015 BWAA Trainer of the Year Abel Sanchez.
"At first I texted Conor McGregor about walking me into the ring. He texted 'yes.' Then we met in person and we shook hands on it and he said he would be honored to walk with me into the ring at Madison Square Garden.
"Ireland is coming to New York City on Friday night and I am eternally grateful for all of the Irish fans who support me. I want my first fight to be very exciting, to make the trip worthwhile for all of our Irish fans. I love them all. The nation's pride rests on my shoulders.
"This experience at Madison Square Garden on St Patrick's Day will be something I've never felt before when I get into that ring. I would like to spend the rest of my St Patrick's Days fighting at Madison Square Garden each and every year.
"My trainer Manny Robles told me the best gym to train at would be at The Rock in Carson, California, with fighters…world champions like Óscar Valdez and Jessie Magdaleno. Manny was right. I am getting all the training I need there.
"I know Shakur Stevenson has been talking about me a lot. He and I have unfinished business. He knows the reason why. It may take two or three years but he and I, on a Top Rank fight, will be in the ring to get this done for once and for all."
Matthew Macklin, Conlan's Manager:
"We are about to see an atmosphere at Madison Square Garden we've never seen before when Michael walks to the ring on Friday night. And Michael has the fighting ability to live up to everyone's expectations."
"I am about to fight on the biggest stage in boxing at Madison Square Garden. We spent nine weeks training with Abel Sanchez in Big Bear. Abel is a pressure coach; he likes power and a lot of it. He wants all of his fighters to go for a stoppage and that's the game plan for Friday night."
Peter Berg, Saucedo's Co-Manager:
"Alex now knows the importance of what a knockout win is all about."
Promoted by Top Rank, in association with Hennessy, Madison Square Garden, remaining tickets to Conlan's pro debut are priced at $200, $150, $100, $75 and $50. They can be purchased at the Madison Square Garden Box Office, all Ticketmaster outlets, Ticketmaster charge by phone (866-858-0008), and online at www.ticketmaster.com and www.thegarden.com.