New York, NY / St. Charles, MO - Next Friday night, DiBella Entertainment and Rumble Time Promotions, in association with Joe DeGuardia's Star Boxing, will present that week's edition of ESPN Friday Night Fights/ESPN Deportes' Noce de Combates from the beautiful Ameristar Casino in St. Charles, MO. Headlining the card will be red-hot lightweight contender Ivan "El Terribel" Redkach (16-0, 13KO's) putting his undefeated record on the line against former title challenger Sergey "The Surgeon" Gulyakevich (41-2, 17KO's) in the 10-round main event of the evening.
ESPN will begin live coverage at 9p.m. ET on ESPN2, ESPN Deportes and WatchESPN.
Redkach recently took time out of his busy training schedule to sit down and answer a few questions about his upcoming fight on Friday night as well as his career.
How has training camp been for this fight? Have you worked on anything different since the victory over Luis in your last fight?
This was a very good training camp for me. I learned from the Luis fight that as I progress in my career, the competition will get better and it will become more difficult to win
fights with early knockouts. I have been working on my stamina and my power for later in fights. I know that my power is there in the early rounds, but I want to be as dangerous in the 10th round as I am in the first round.
What did you learn from the Luis fight and were you happy with your performance?
I was happy with my performance. Tony Luis is a very good fighter and he's very tough. I would have liked to end the fight with a knockout for the television audience, but even without a knockout, I won a convincing decision over a tough fighter. With every fight, there are things that I can improve upon, but having never gone 10 rounds before, it was good experience and I got the win, and that's always the main goal heading into any fight.
You have devastating power and are known for your vicious knockouts, but against Luis you showed that you can also box. Is that something we can expect to see more of?
I think people overlook my ability when they see how many of my fights end in a knockout, but I am not just a power puncher. I am able to use my hand speed and movement to get into a position where my power can be devastating. I don't want to just rely on my power to get victories because in order to be a champion, you need to have the tools to win in different ways. I showed in my fight with Luis that I can outbox a talented boxer, but I've shown in the past that I am also capable of winning via knockout.
What kind of fight are you expecting out of your opponent next Friday?
Gulyakevich is a very talented fighter with a lot of experience. This will be his first time on television in the United States and I expect him to fight the best fight of his career on Friday. He is a former European champion and has fought for a world championship before. I think both of us are going to try to impress the audience and test each other from the opening bell, I am hoping for an exciting fight for the fans.
Some people were a bit critical of your performance against Luis and thought you should have knocked him out, what are your thoughts on that?
It's very hard to knock out a professional fighter, I always look for the knockout, but my goal is to win and that is what I did in the Luis fight.
Are you looking to make a statement in this fight, and if so, what is it?
Every time I fight, I am trying to make a statement. I want to fight for a world championship and the only way that will happen is to impress the audience and continue to win.
What is your prediction for this fight?
I believe that I will win. I believe that my power is going to be too much for Gulyakevich and that the fight will end with a knockout.
Where would you like to see yourself after a win on Friday night?
I want to continue to move up the rankings toward a world title fight. I am the USBA lightweight champion and on Friday night, I hope to solidify myself as a championship contender.
Anything you would like to say in closing?
I want to thank ESPN for giving me the opportunity to fight on television once again, as well as my promoter Lou DiBella and my manager Larry Army Jr. for making it possible for me to have this fight for the fans.
Tickets are currently on sale and are priced at $80 for ringside and $40 for general admission. Tickets can be purchased by calling (800) 293-5949, or by visiting www.metrotix.com . Doors open at 5p.m. CT with the first bout scheduled for 6p.m. CT. Tags: Ivan Redkach