by David P. Greisman
He held a world title at junior welterweight from 2001 to 2003, continued to challenge for belts in that weight class for years to come, and has competed at or around 140 for nearly his entire career — but no longer, he says.
Now DeMarcus “Chop Chop” Corley wants to go to lightweight, win a world title in that division and then finish his career.
Corley essentially was a lightweight in his last bout, when, according to BoxRec.com, he weighed in at 135.25 pounds for his bout with Viktor Postol for something called the World Boxing Council International Silver light welterweight title.
He lost that bout by unanimous decision, but the 38-year-old from Washington, D.C., believes he has one more run in him.
Corley, who is 39-20-1 with 23 knockouts, recently spoke to BoxingScene.com in Atlantic City.
BoxingScene.com: What’s the latest with you?
Corley: “The latest is Kell Brook in Spain, training with him, getting ready for the Devon Alexander fight. Before that was Danny Garcia, getting ready for the Zab Judah fight.”
BoxingScene.com: So you’re kind of the sparring partner hired gun right now.
Corley: “(laughs) You can say that. I’m one of the best southpaws out there right now.”
BoxingScene.com: That’s what you’re doing for other fighters. What about yourself?
Corley: “I’m waiting on Lou DiBella to find me a fight at 135. I’m not a junior welterweight no more. I’m a lightweight, walking around at 139, 140 pounds, when I’m not in the gym. I start training and get down to 137, 136, within two weeks. We’re just waiting on a date right now.”
BoxingScene.com: So you’re aiming for 135. Is there anyone specific you want at 135 right now?
Corley: “There’s a long wish list for me right now: Antonio DeMarco, Vicente Escobedo — who just got knocked out tonight. We were trying to get on the card to fight him tonight, but they turned me down; they said they didn’t want to fight me. DeMarco said he didn’t want to fight me. Hopefully we can try to get a fight with Ricky Burns if Lou DiBella can contact his people. Any one of the guys at 135 in the top 10, I’ll take a shot at any one of them, just to get me in there.”
BoxingScene.com: How much of an uphill battle is it to do that? You are a veteran. You’ve said before that people don’t want to face a veteran like you right now because of the risk/reward ratio.
Corley: “And that’s what I keep getting back from Joe [Quiambao], who is the matchmaker for Lou DiBella. He says, ‘Chop, no one wants to fight you. There is no reward, and there is a risk for them. No one wants to take a chance.’ It’s too risky for them to take a chance to fight me at 135.”
BoxingScene.com: How do you keep from getting frustrated — or are you frustrated right now?
Corley: “Yes, I’m very frustrated, but the motivation of me getting in there at 135 and winning a title is worth the wait.”
BoxingScene.com: How much longer do you want to keep on doing this?
Corley: “I’d say two more years.”
BoxingScene.com: Do you have to get another world title belt before you retire?
Corley: “I don’t have to get another one, but I want to finish my legacy at lightweight.”
David P. Greisman is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow David on Twitter @fightingwords2 or send questions/comments via email at [email protected]