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Lamont Peterson on Khan's Flaws, Rematch, Rios Revenge

by Chris Robinson

It’s very evident that when you speak with newly-crowned WBA/IBF junior welterweight champion Lamont Peterson that he is still a man taking everything in stride.

A few weekends back Peterson scored one of the year’s biggest upsets in one of 2011’s most compelling fights when he went tooth and nail with British star Amir Khan on HBO’s airwaves. After twelve grueling rounds Peterson came away with a split-decision verdict and is now in the driver’s seat when eyeing his future.
 
I caught up with the Washington, DC native to get a feel for what kind of emotions he was going through during the lead-up and aftermath of the Khan struggle and also what he thinks about his next ring endeavor.
 
Obviously humbled by everything he has endured in both life and as a professional prizefighter, Peterson revealed that he was happy with the IBF’s decision to not issue an immediate rematch with Khan and spoke on the weaknesses he saw in Amir ahead of time.
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Peterson also pointed out that a match with former lightweight champion Brandon Rios is something that is very intriguing to him, as the Oxnard,Calif.-based bruiser was the first and only man to hand Peterson’s younger brother Anthony a defeat when he bullied his way towards a 7th round disqualification victory over him in September of last year.
 
Read on for some highlights from my conversation with Peterson…
 
The way I feel right now…
“I just felt that all the hard work paid off right there in that fight and that was just a great feeling. I know, at the end of the day, I won’t get the credit that I deserve for my victory, but the way I feel right now it really doesn’t matter right now.”

Thoughts on Amir Khan’s pushing in the fight…
“It didn’t bother me in the fight but I know without him pushing me like that, I would have been able to do more work on the inside, where I wanted to fight. He was pushing me that much, of course he was pushing me away from him, so I couldn’t do the work that I wanted to do. At the end of the fight I had no problem with it. I never complained about him pushing me, never really noticed him pushing me like that. It was the pulling down of the neck that bothered me. And I kindly told the ref that he was pulling my neck down but he ref didn’t say anything about it. So I kept fighting.”

How he knew he could exploit Khan…
“He doesn’t know how to fight on the inside. He needs distance to fight and I knew that if I got close, up on him, that he was going to be uncomfortable and I would be able to do good work on the inside and he would have problems with it.”

Comparing Khan to his past opponents…
“It’s like him, Timothy Bradley, and Victor Ortiz, they are all on the same level. But they were different challenges, different fighters, and different styles. But all of them are on the same level.”

The IBF opting not to issue an immediate Khan-Peterson rematch…
“I think the IBF did the right thing. There definitely wasn’t any cheating going on or anything like that. As far as the rematch, I would love a rematch with Khan, but right now we’re enjoying the holidays and just spending time with my family. Not even thinking about boxing. It’s not nothing that we’re talking about and it’s nothing that we’ve signed on, regardless of what people have been saying. I haven’t agreed to any rematch with Khan.”
 
The motivation of money at this point in his career…
“Money is not the main concern for me. Of course money plays a factor. It depends just on what type of fight it is. There were times when I was fighting for a little bit of money and I was ok with it, because I know the fight didn’t generate that much money. The only thing is, my only problem is when someone else is getting a lot of money and I’m not. Even the people that aren’t in the ring fighting, getting more money than me, and I just think that’s ridiculous. That’s the only time money plays an issue, but for the most part, I don’t really care about the money.” 
 
Touching on other topics in the sport, including Manny Pacquiao’s recent victory over Juan Manuel Marquez…
“It was a really, really close fight. I’m a Marquez fan, so of course I think he won the fight. It’s probably going to always be that way at this point. The only way I could see it being different is if Pacquiao catches Marquez really clean and maybe knocks him out.”
 
Why the public may show disapproval towards Pacquiao-Marquez IV…

“There probably will be leading up until the fight. But once the fight happens, it’s going to be another good fight and people probably will forget about. Leading up until the fight and when it’s first announced, people will be talking bad about it.”
 
Thoughts on Victor Ortiz’s February 11th rematch with Andre Berto…
“I think it’s going to be another exciting fight. Both guys punch hard, so expect knock downs. I think it’s a good fight for boxing. I thought for sure that they probably had Fight of the Year but there were so many good fights, they probably won’t win. They got another chance coming around and I think it will probably be another candidate for Fight of the Year.”
 
Open to a fight with Brandon ‘Bam Bam’ Rios…
“It’s definitely a fight I would like. The last three fights, it seems everybody I fight, they are good movers and they always move. Him, he’s not going anywhere and I like that. I definitely would like a fight with Brandon.”

Being ringside at the Palms Hotel and Casino when Rios defeated his brother Anthony…
“I was upset. Never felt like that before. It was difficult and that’s just life and you get over it. I would like for my brother to fight him but he’s moving up and I know my brother’s not moving up no time soon.”

[Reader's note: Visit the following slideshows for a look back on 2011 with boxing's biggest stars Nonito Donaire / Juan Manuel Marquez / Victor Ortiz ]

Chris Robinson is based out of Las Vegas, Nevada. He can be reached at [email protected] . Please follow him at www.Twitter.com/CRHarmony
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by richardt on 12-23-2011

[QUOTE=americanbot;11595930]HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.[/QUOTE]That lines shows all and your age as well. Get lost child. Come back when you grow the fuk up. Tell your mommy to keep your high chair away from the PC.

Comment by Hayehammer on 12-23-2011

Lamont peterson vs rios= fight of the year 2012 if it happens! Bank on it

Comment by americanbot on 12-23-2011

[QUOTE=richardt;11595798]Ortiz is fighting at 147, Rios hasn't reached the 140 division yet. Fight not happening. Saying Rios will soon lose while not knowing who he will fight next is bias. The guy that beats Rios is going to take punishement…

Comment by bigcursedawg on 12-23-2011

[QUOTE=richardt;11595798]Ortiz is fighting at 147, Rios at 140. Fight not happening. The guy that beats Rios is going to take punishement and be hurt quite a bit in a fight with him. Rios can outwill any fighter at 140. Ortiz…

Comment by richardt on 12-23-2011

[QUOTE=americanbot;11595745]till this very day i think ortiz would HURT rios......i think rios is just over hyped but will soon lose.........ortiz wrecks him.[/QUOTE] Ortiz is fighting at 147, Rios hasn't reached the 140 division yet. Fight not happening. Saying Rios will…

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