Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

Mike Lee Regained Rhythm Working With Chris Byrd

The standard playbook for boxing up-and-comers with just 12 professional fights under their belt is to hone their craft anonymously on various regional undercards, waiting for a chance at a high-profile showcase.

But with his athletic skills and undefeated record, matinee idol looks, tireless charitable work and Finance degree from The University of Notre Dame, as well as the almost unheard of accompanying level of national attention he brings to a sport that desperately needs it, Mike Lee is in no way your average, every day boxing prospect.

A humble and clean-living Subway national spokesperson who donates most of his fight purses to worthy charitable causes such as the Children’s Memorial Hospital and the Ara Parseghian Medical Research Foundation, Lee (12-0, 7 KOs) will take on Paul Gonsalves (7-3, 3 KOs) of Hyannis, Massachusetts, to open the worldwide ESPN Friday Night Fights telecast this Friday, July 25, in front of a huge crowd of his fans in his hometown of Chicago at the UIC Pavilion.

“I’m beyond excited,” said Lee of his upcoming fight. “My last fight in Philly, I was excited to be back in the ring, but to come back home to fight. It’s so special to me. I fight better when there’s more pressure and fans and more attention and that’s what this will be. A national TV fight in my hometown. I’m very grateful.”

Presented by Warriors Boxing, 8 Count Productions, Seconds Out Promotions and Marines Promotions, the night of world-class professional boxing entitled “Conquerors”, will also feature rejuvenated welterweight contender Roberto “La Amenaza” Garcia (35-3, 23 KOs) of Weslaco, Texas, taking on hard-hitting and dangerous Breidis “Khanqueror” Prescott (27-5, 20 KOs) of Miami, via Barranquilla, Colombia in the night’s 10-round main event.

WBA #15, IBF #13, and WBO #11-rated Caleb “Golden” Truax (23-1-2, 14 KOs) of Osseo, Minnesota, will take on former USBA Junior Middleweight Champion Derek “Pooh” Ennis (24-4-1, 13 KOs) in the televised co-main event.

Tickets for "Conquerors" are priced at VIP $151, VIP Ringside $101, Mezzanine $51 and General Admission $31 and can be purchased through Ticketmaster (Ticketmaster.com, 1-800-745-3000), the 8 Count Productions Offices: 312-622-7668 or the UIC Pavilion Box Office: 312-413-5740. More information will be available shortly at 8CountProductions.com.

It’s already been a wild ride in boxing for 27-year-old Lee. The immensely popular breakthrough fighter has fought on the undercards of some of boxing’s most prestigious events. The showdown against Gonsalves will be just his second in his hometown. He turned professional at the UIC Pavilion in 2010.

“Training went well,” continued Lee. “I’ve got my rhythm back from my last big win in April (a sixth-round stoppage of then-undefeated Peter Lewison). I’m healthy and feeling sharp. I’m in San Diego training with (former heavyweight champion) Chris Byrd. This will be our second fight together and we’ve been working together since February.”

Lee says working with a world-class technician like Byrd, one of the smartest in-ring boxers to ever lace up the gloves, has given him a sweeter approach to the science.

“Chris is a phenomenal trainer and his resume speaks for itself. He’s teaching me how to hit and not get hit. I’m becoming more of a boxer and I sit on my back foot a bit more now. I don’t need to take a punch to land three. He’s taught me a lot about counterpunching and moving. Chris is all about movement and changing up the rhythm. He’s really teaching me how to get to that next level.”

Lee is expecting a challenge from Gonsalves, but having access to a boxing mind as sharp as Byrd’s has its advantages.

“I think Gonsalves is a tough guy. He’s a good boxer and he’s beat a bunch of guys. You can’t take anybody lightly, but Chris is a master of styles and we’ve studied him and we’re working on both his strengths and weaknesses and my perceived strength and weaknesses. We’ll be ready when the bell rings. I want to keep beating better and better fighters and keep winning and working my way up the ranks. I want to win a world title. That’s been my goal since I turned pro.”

Lee says there is no timetable for his ascent up the light heavyweight ranks and he will take each fight one at a time.

“We’re taking our time. I didn’t have a big amateur career, but I’ve been getting better and better every fight and sparring with some of the top fighters in the world. I’m certainly a lot better now than I was when I turned pro. As long as I keep getting better and wining my fights, that’s all I ask of myself. There’s been a lot of spotlight on my career with the commercials and the Notre Dame background, but like any other fighter, I will do it when I’m ready. You get offers to fight people, but you want to take each step one at a time. I’ll just keep building and keep fighting tougher guys.”

You have to admire Mike Lee. He could be sitting in an office right now raking in money. But a fighter fights and that’s what’s in his blood. Lee spends countless hours training and a great deal of the rest doing charitable work for various causes. When the lights dim this Friday night, a huge crowd of supporters will go crazy while Lee enters the ring.

Deservedly so. Mike Lee is an above average guy.

“I love it. That’s the main reason why I look forward to coming home. I have incredible support, coast to coast, but especially in Chicago. Not a day goes by that I don’t get mail or a text from friends or family wishing me good luck and telling me they’ll be there. They’re helping me sell tickets. It means the most to me. People support me and seem to like the person I am. I have been very involved in Chicago children’s charities since I turned pro and they respect that and want to support me. Portions of this fight’s purse are going to charity as well. That’s something I’ve always felt strongly about and I’m proud to be part of it.”

Tags: Mike Lee image  
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by shawn4943 on 07-22-2014

Lee is a likable guy, but he sucks as a boxer and will never beat anyone of note. Maybe he can get in some more Subway commercials before a mediocre fighter exposes him.

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (1)
Top Headlines Miguel Cruz Drops Alex Martin Twice, Wins Decision in Rematch Nacho Believes Golden Boy Won't Allow Cotto-Marquez Clash Abel Sanchez: Shafikov Has "Extremely Tough" Task With Easter Horn: I Like Being Told I Stand No Chance Against Pacquiao Bob Arum: Blame Me if Pacquiao-Horn Isn't a Competitive Fight! Diego De La Hoya Ready For Battle in San Luis, Argentina Povetkin Back in Good Graces of The WBA, WBO, Says Ryabinsky Smith: Don't Think I'm Getting Deserved Credit for KO of Hopkins Pacquiao Not Looking Past Horn, But Wants Mayweather Rematch Charlo-Heiland, Washington-Miller Set For Broner-Garcia Card Mikey Garcia: Unless a Lucky Punch, I Don't See How Broner Wins Antoine Douglas vs. Bruno Sandoval Set For July 14th Roach: To Get Mayweather, Pacquiao Must Impress With Horn Sergey Kovalev Eyes New Trainer, Move To New Weight Class Photos: Vijender Singh, Zulpikar Maimaitiali - Go Face To Face Marco Huck is Pumped To Join World Boxing Super Series Uzcategui's Agent on Dirrell Rematch Order, Lawson Court Case Arum: Pacquiao-Horn on ESPN is "a Gift" for Boxing Fans Pacquiao's Future, Beyond Horn, is Uncertain at The Moment Broner Wishes He Had Always Trained as Hard as Mayweather Tyson Fury: Klitschko Let Joshua Off The Hook After Knockdown Roach: If Pacquiao Struggles With Horn, Might Be Time To Retire Tim Tszyu Will Now Face Chris Khan, Nathan Webber is Out Photos: Manny Pacquiao Grinding Hard in Brisbane For Horn Chavez Sr: Today My Brother Was Killed, Tomorrow it Could Be Me Horn: Getting a Marquez KO of Pacquiao Has Been Our Main Point Micki Nielsen Returns on July 8 in Ludwigshafen, Germany Feel free to hate Mayweather-McGregor, but for the right reasons Andre Ward Mulling Next Move, Doubts Stevenson Will Fight Hopkins Urges Mayweather, McGregor: Make Fight Free For Fans! Photos: Miguel Cruz vs. Alex Martin - PBC on FS1 Official Weights Jeff Horn: I'm Going To Give Manny Pacquiao a Really Hard Fight Chavez Sr. Vows To Get Payback For The Murder of His Brother Pacquiao's Aussie Sparring Partner: I Don't Owe Jeff Horn Sh*t! Ward To Critics: I'm Not Having It, Nobody Taking Away This Win! Gabe Rosado Looking To Possible J'Leon Love Rematch Roc Nation Exec: Flores Intentionally Stayed Down on the Canvas Photos: Omar Figueroa Putting in Work For Robert Guerrero Miguel Roman Bounces Back With Battering of Nery Saguilan Julio Cesar Chavez's Brother Shot and Killed During Robbery
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement