by David P. Greisman
Bryant Jennings hadn’t watched any footage of Mike Perez ahead of their fight this past weekend. He’d only seen him once, when he was at the arena in-person when Perez beat Magomed Abdusalamov last year.
Still, he had an expectation of what Perez would do.
“I expected Mike Perez to trade more. I expected Mike Perez to put a little more pressure,” Jennings said at the post-fight press conference. “That’s the reason why I’m so glad I do things that I do, because I’m an adjuster. If I’d had my strategy set right then and there on one particular type of style that Mike Perez would come out with, then I probably would’ve been in a little more trouble.”
“He was kinda playing cat and mouse, setting traps,” Jennings said at another point. I was aware of his craftiness. I was aware of his experience. It wasn’t like … it wasn’t fear. It was like a cautiousness. Test the limits a little bit. Fake here, fake there, see what he’ll do. … My plan was originally to be pressured heavily, and then I was going to use my distance well, and then after maybe the sixth or seventh round, show him that I’ve got some inside game, too. But he didn’t trade at all. He didn’t want to trade. He still was a little tricky.
“I worked well. I adjusted. I probably could’ve statrted out better, but you know I’m learning,” Jennings said. “Perez had over 450 total fights amateur and professional. Me? 36, amateur and professional, five years. But no excuses. I won. I got the win.”
Pick up a copy of David’s book, “Fighting Words: The Heart and Heartbreak of Boxing,” at http://bit.ly/fightingwordsamazon or internationally at http://bit.ly/fightingwordsworldwide. Send questions/comments via email at [email protected]