By Chris Robinson
Having come across as gentleman of the sport over the years, it’s not surprising to expect a lack of pre-fight drama or theatrics to be coming from IBF junior welterweight champion Lamont Peterson and Lucas Matthysse, the division’s WBC interim champion, ahead of their pivotal match later tonight.
Peterson faces Matthysse inside of the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City in a Showtime-televised attraction that will change the landscape of the junior welterweight class, this despite the fight taking place at a catch weight of 141 pounds.
While speaking to various members of the media ahead of his 34th professional bout, Peterson (31-1-1, 16 KO’s) seemed to dismiss the notion that he had to be weary of Matthysse’s brute punching power.
“People are talking about punching power, but if that’s all they can say about him, then that’s all he’s got,” said Peterson. “Then he’s in trouble.”
Not surprisingly, Matthysse (33-2, 31 KO’s) shared a completely different perspective during his time with the press.
“Peterson is a good fighter,” Matthysse would concede, speaking through Golden Boy Promotions’ Ramiro Gonzalez. “He’s a good boxer. He knows how to move, how to deal with things, especially when he’s in danger. He’s a good, good fighter, but I think I can beat him with my power. I possess power, but also, I know how to get into the best situation for my behalf. I think my power is my key in this fight.”
When advised that Peterson’s side has been doubting him, Matthysse seemed amused, if anything.
“I think [they] can say anything, but Lamont Peterson is going to feel my power on Saturday,” the Argentinean continued.
It’s well-known that Matthysse has been eyeing a match with WBA/WBC champion Danny Garcia for quite some time. Garcia’s most recent triumph saw him pile up the points early against Brooklyn’s Zab Judah before weathering a frantic late-rounds rally as he won a unanimous decision.
Having suffered his first professional loss against Judah in November of 2010, Matthysse seemed mildly surprised that the 35-year old veteran is still going strong.
“Honestly, I saw Zab Judah do very [well],” Matthysse stated. “He was more complicated for Danny Garcia than a lot of people expected. It was a good fight, but I think Zab Judah did a good job.”
Matthysse again confirmed his desires in wanting to face Garcia and revealed why he thinks such a fight is a winnable one for him.
“Yes, I‘d love to fight Danny Garcia,” said Matthysse. “You know, I’m in the interim champ, he’s the full champion. I don’t want to talk too much about the weaknesses, but I see that he is wide open and his punches are so slow. That’s the weaknesses I see in Danny Garcia.”