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Otis Griffin Talks Yusaf Mack Fight, Tavoris Cloud, More

By Ryan Burton
 
Otis "Triple OG" Griffin (23-6-2) talks to BoxingScene.com about his upcoming IBF light heavweight eliminator versus Yusaf Mack (28-3-2) that takes place on March 4th in Woodland Hills, Calfornia.  The winner of the fight will become the mandatory challenger to champion Tavoris Cloud (22-0).  Griffin talks about the keys to victory, a potential fight with Cloud and more in this exclusive interview.
 
BoxingScene.com:  Give us your thoughts on your upcoming IBF title eliminator versus Yusaf Mack that takes place on Friday.
 
Otis Griffin:  I think this is going to be a great fight.  You know its two guys that are still at the top of the food chain in the light heavyweight division.  There is a lot of action in the division right now.  It is going to be one of those fights that sets up this division for the rest of the year.
 
BoxingScene.com:  What do you think will be the key to the fight?
 
Otis Griffin:  This fight is going to be high speed chess.  I think the key is going to be the guy who pretty much has the best cerebral fight.  We are known as guys who can box and punch so it really comes down to being high speed chess.
 
BoxingScene.com:  I am sure you saw Mack's last fight, a loss to Glen Johnson.  Do you take anything out of that fight?
 
Otis Griffin:  No not anything in particular.  Glen Johson is a tough customer.  He is a guy that sets out to take people's wills.  I was actually in camp with Yusaf when they made the fight plan for Glen Johnson.  He is right in that he just didn't stick to the gameplan.  When he stuck to it he gave Glen problems.  I think he got a little intoxicated with himself and I think he thought he could do something that hadn't been done since Bernard Hopkins and that is knock Glen Johnson out.
 
BoxingScene.com:  I have previously interviewed Yusaf and he mentioned being in camp with you as well.  You guys know each other's style very well and have sparred with each other.  How does the fact that you know each other so well play into this fight?
 
Otis Griffin:  I think it makes it even more of a spectacular fight because all of the cards are on the table.  There is nothing that is going to surprise him or me.  We know each other's deadliest poison and we also know a little bit of each other's chinks in the armor so it makes it an interesting fight.  It will come down to which guy can overcome his deficiencies or the guy that was able to go back and correct his deficiencies.
 
BoxingScene.com:  This fight was originally scheduled to take place in Minnesota.  How do you feel now it will be in California where you live?
 
Otis Griffin:  That is great for me.  It is good to be home in the Golden State where you can actually see the sun and not be buried in three feet of snow (laughing).  That is going to be great for me.  Especially with it taking place in an area like Woodland Hills down in LA which is a real upscale area with good fight fans and is just a great setting for this fight.
 
BoxingScene.com:  You shouldn't have to worry about catching the flu fight week.
 
Otis Griffin:  Exactly.  Which has happened to me before.  
 
BoxingScene.com:  This fight is an eliminator to get a shot at Tavoris Cloud.  I know you are concentrating on Mack but have you thought ahead at all to that fight?
 
Otis Griffin:  Yeah.  Actually I could have fought Tavoris on December 17th and I was preparing to face him as a mandatory defense for him.  We decided to pass on it and fight the eliminator but it gave us a chance to measure him up and see what he does best so yeah I have taken quite a few peeks at what Tavoris has been doing.  I think he is a good fighter and everything but I think he has a one track mind and I think either one of us me or Yusaf will be a very difficult fight for him.
 
BoxingScene.com:  We know Tavoris likes to fight in the center of the ring and slug it out.  Do you think you would be able to outbox him?
 
Otis Griffin:  Yeah.  One thing that Jeff Lacy can tell you is that when you stand up to Otis Griffin in person and really see how big he is, you probably don't want to bang with him.
 
BoxingScene.com:  Do you have a message for the fans?
 
Otis Griffin:  Just come out to see a great fight.  It is going to be two guys with two fisted power and a great intellectual boxing game so the fans are going to get what they paid for. Come out and see the next great heavyweight champion.  No pun intended.
 
Send questons or comments to [email protected]
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by #1Assassin on 03-03-2011

i completely forgot about this fight. is it on the FNF's card? i hope so cuz it isnt a bad matchup, they aint top of the food chain but they aint bums neither. they can fight, especially mack. on top…

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