Saturday night at the St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa, FL, sees a pair of light heavyweight world title fights as IBF Champion Clinton Woods faces IBO titlist Antonio Tarver and WBC Champion Chad Dawson faces former world titlist Glen Johnson.
Showtime televises live starting at 9PM ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast.
“I’m glad to be here. If anyone has any doubt who’s the best light heavyweight, I will show them once again on Saturday night. I am delighted that Woods is here and sounds ready to fight. But like so many that fought me before him, his dreams and hopes will be dashed.
This is a tremendous fight card, but my fight is the main event and if you want me to dissect all the reasons why and all the fighters on this card I will. There is only one true light heavyweight champion and that’s me.
Everybody wants to see me fight Chad Dawson. He is a good fighter but he still has aways to go. I don’t think he’s looked so hot in his last couple fights. I’m strong as ever and ready to go. If you can’t be here live in Tampa, watch on Showtime. This is going to be a great night for me, and a great night for boxing.’’
“I want to thank all involved for making this fight happen. I am very excited to be fighting a great champion like Antonio Tarver. It is a dream come. My conditioning is excellent. I’ve been in Florida training for 10 days and spent eight weeks in the gym in Sheffield before that, so I am ready for a war.
“For four of the top light heavyweights in the world to be on the same card makes for an historic event. I am proud to be part of it. Tarver can win the war of the words until he talks himself hoarse, but, come Saturday, when the real fight starts, my hands will do all the talking. I can’t see our fight going the distance, but I do see me definitely winning and retaining the IBF title and taking it back home to Sheffield.’’
“I have never been more anxious or ready for a fight. I am determined to make a statement and prove to everybody that I am the No. 1 light heavyweight in the world. I have done all that’s been asked, but I definitely feel I’m being underrated and not getting the respect I deserve. Some polls are flat out wrong for having some of the guys ranked ahead of me like they do. As far as I’m concerned all those polls are a farce.
“I have a lot of respect for Glen Johnson. He truly is a warrior and I know he is coming to win the world title again. I expect him to give it everything he has. I am prepared for an onslaught. But he is 39 and I’m just 25.
“Tarver has some nerve saying bad things about my fights. What he said riled me up and there’s nothing hardly that ever riles me up. I guess he hasn’t watched tapes of his last two fights. I want to express my gratitude to everybody for giving me the opportunity to showcase my talents. I definitely feel this is the fight card of the year.’’
“I have been in a lot of world title fights, but this is my first in Florida and I plan to make it a memorable one for all concerned. I appreciate Chad Dawson giving me the opportunity. Most fighters, especially world champs, avoid me.
“I am ready for a great, tough fight that in my mind will be the most exciting of the night.I am in tremendous shape. I am ready to bring it like you won’t believe.’’
Tickets for a doubleheader promoted by Gary Shaw Productions and AT Entertainment in association with Fight Academy are on sale at the McDonald's Box Office at the St Pete Times Forum and all Ticketmaster outlets, by phone at (813) 287-8844 or 727-898-2100 or online at ticketmaster.com. They are priced at $27.75, $52.75, $102.75, $202.75, $302.75.
Limited ringside seats are available at $602.75. Limited VIP Packages are available at $1002.75. Prices do not include service charges. For dinner reservations, the night of the event, call 813-301-6926 or log on to ticketmaster.com. Parking passes are available at ticketmaster.com.