Andrzej Fonfara Ready For Glen Johnson At The Crossroads
By Jake Donovan
Light heavyweight prospect Andrzej Fonfara has spent the past four years proving that his last loss was a fluke. A 12-fight unbeaten streak – including a current run of nine straight knockouts – goes a long way towards restoring confidence.
Now all he has to do is prove that he’s for real.
Fonfara currently stands at the crossroads of his career, with a much clearer sense of direction to be provided after Friday’s showdown against former light heavyweight champion Glen Johnson.
The bout serves as this week’s main event on ESPN2 Friday Night Fights and takes place at the UIC Pavilion in Fonfara’s adopted hometown of Chicago. The Polish transplant has become a favorite son to the area and the venue in particular, fighting at the Pavilion for the 11th time in his past 12 fights.
“I’m glad to get this opportunity in front of my fans,” Fonfara (21-2, 12KO). “It will be very loud.”
It’s up to Fonfara to prove an old axiom true, that action speaks louder than words.
There is the train of thought that this fight comes at the perfect time – Fonfara is red hot, while the 43-year old Johnson (51-16-2, 35KO) appears to have seen better days. A ring veteran of nearly 20 years, Johnson enters the fight having lost two straight, though against the sport’s upper echelon of talent in Carl Froch and Lucian Bute.
Johnson looked like a fighter on the way out the door against Bute, losing nearly every round and not offering much in the way of a competitive fight for the first time in more than a decade. Still, most of his losses in recent past have been followed up with an impressive enough win to keep his career afloat, which leads to the intrigue surrounding Friday’s headliner.
It’s an experience to which Fonfara can’t yet truly relate. His two career losses have come against far inferior competition to the man who will stand across him on Friday evening. This fact isn’t lost on his promoter 8 Count Productions, but “that’s what this fight is all about. Adrzej is now 20-plus fights into his career. Everyone wants to see what he’s made of and it’s put-up or shut-up time. We know he’s ready, but it’s up to Andrzej to prove it.”
His modest competition level aside, Fonfara has taken tremendous strides in his career development. Moving up from middleweight - where he lost to Findley – and even super middleweight has proven wise, as his fights over the past two-plus years have shown a 24-year old fighter who has finally grown into his 6’2” frame.
Fonfara still comes across as deceptively rail thin, but has added enough muscle to where his opponents feel the difference.
“I still learn from every fight. The smartest thing I’ve done (so far) was move up to light heavyweight,” Fonfara admits. “I don’t walk around heavy at this weight, and can spend training camp focusing on getting stronger and sharper, instead of trying to get down to fight weight. That is the key for my success.”
That level of confidence alone goes a long way towards facing a wily veteran like Johnson, who possesses a flair for reshuffling the deck. Many in the media and among the general boxing public wonder how much Johnson has left at this stage of his career.
Fonfara is right there with them, as he prepares for the very best version of ‘The Road Warrior’, refusing to bank on the possibility of his opponent showing his age.
“Glen Johnson is a very tough fighter,” Fonfara acknowledges. “We trained very hard for this fight because we know he’s dangerous. I want to prove I’m ready for (the best) light heavyweights.”
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter: @JakeNDaBox
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Tmann400 on 07-13-2012
After watching a couple of this guys fights, I have to say I don't think he has much of a chance, unless Johnson is completely done. The kid throws in high volume, he's fun to watch. But, he seems very…Post a Comment - View More User Comments (1)
Top Headlines Rey Vargas Decisions Gavin McDonnell, Captures WBC Title Luke Campbell - Drops, Stops and Dominates Jairo Lopez Photos: Andy Vences Open Workout From The SNAC Gym Cody Crowley talks sparring with Mayweather, homecoming bout Tommy Coyle Drills Rakeem Noble in Three Rounds De La Hoya: Chavez Being Overweight Would Be a Slap in The Face Wilder: Fans Not Worried About Klitschko, They Want Me vs. Joshua Canelo Alvarez vs. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. Rematch in September? Gavin McDonnell vs. Rey Vargas - LIVE Results Breazeale: Ugonoh 'Has to Pay' for My Loss to Anthony Joshua Photos: Eleider Alvarez Blasts Out Lucian Bute in Five Rounds Chavez Jr: My Passion For Boxing is Back, I'm Doing Things Right Deontay Wilder-Gerald Washington: Pre-Fight Report Card Mayweather: Only One Fight That's Important - Me vs. McGregor! Daily Bread Mailbag: Pacquiao-Khan, Broner, Ward, Spence-Brook Gavin McDonnell is Confident That He Will Stun Rey Vargas Bellew: Haye Carries The Sport in Bad Way - a Disgrace To Boxing! Joshua Believes He Will KO Klitschko, Hopes Ref Doesn't Stop It Izu Ugonoh is Unlike Any Polish Heavyweight You've Ever Seen De La Hoya: Mayweather-McGregor is a Disrespect To Boxing! Chavez Sr: The Bet Between My Son and Canelo is Now OFF! Bute: Alvarez Caught Me With a Good Punch, He Deserved To Win Should More Fighters Bet Their Purse? Saul Rodriguez: I'm Pretty Happy With My Performance Rodriguez KO's Narvaez: Antonio Vargas, Teofimo Lopez Win Canelo: Chavez Jr. Did Not Take Advantage of Being Chavez's Son Justin DeLoach KO's Pearson: Saul Rodriguez Survives Big Scare Photos: Canelo, Chavez Jr. - Go Face To Face in Los Angeles Eleider Alvarez Stops Lucian Bute in Five, Earns Stevenson Shot Kavaliauskas Will Return on Lomachenko vs. Sosa Card Deontay Wilder: Titles Aside - I'm The Man To Beat at Heavyweight! Thurman on Angel: Boxing Doesn't Have Time for That Clown Act Glazkov is Planning To Return To The Ring in The Summer Jay Harris Outpoints Essomba, Wins Commonwealth Gold Cecilia Braekhus Dominates Klara Svensson To Retain Belts Terence Crawford Could Fight Granados Next Instead of Felix Diaz Photos: Hurd-Harrison, Breazeale-Ugonoh - Official Weigh-In Photos: Deontay Wilder vs. Gerald Washington - Official Weigh-In Harley Benn, Son Of Nigel, Wins His Pro Debut At York Hall De La Hoya: Canelo Fight is There - Golovkin Has To Accept Deal!
Latest Boxing Video Video: Joseph Parker, Kevin Barry Discuss Hughie Fury Defense Video: Canelo Alvarez Talks Chavez, Golovkin, More Video: Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. Discusses Canelo, Weight, More Video: Izu Ugonoh Interview, Training For Dominic Breazeale Video: Daniel Jacobs - Two Part Interview on Golovkin Video: Daniel Jacobs Putting in Work For Gennady Golovkin Video: Ceylan, Lowe Nearly Rumble During Their Promo Filming Video: Anthony Joshua Talks Career, Klitschko, Mental Game Video: Eddie Hearn on Khan, Brook, Spence, Smith, Joshua, More Video: Klitschko Discusses Drug Testing, His Future, Joshua
Recent Top Stories
Latest Active Forum Threads