NEW YORK CITY -- WBC Super Middleweight Champion Carl “The Cobra” Froch and former World Champion Glen “The Road Warrior” Johnson and their respective camps held their final press conference Wednesday at the Edison Ballroom in New York City to discuss their Super Six World Boxing Classic Semifinal at the Adrian Phillips Ballroom at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City on Saturday, June 4 and televised LIVE on SHOWTIME at 9 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the west coast).
Both fighters were respectful to each other, but they are predicting radically different outcomes of Saturday’s highly anticipated fight.
Froch feels he will dominate every round, while Johnson and his team feel that Froch is in way over his head with a lighter, faster Glen Johnson.
The following are quote highlights made by all the speakers on Wednesday:
Ken Hershman, Executive Vice President and General Manager SHOWTIME Sports:
“I couldn’t be more thrilled to have Glen Johnson and Carl Froch in these Semifinals. They’re proud warriors who signify everything that’s great about this sport.
“FIGHT CAMP° 360, the latest episode that introduces everybody to this Semifinal will be airing all week on SHOWTIME Extreme, so plenty of opportunities to catch a great show. We’re also running a special 15-minute recap of Pacquiao/Mosley FIGHT CAMP 360° leading into Saturday night’s fight.
“We look at FIGHT CAMP 360° as exactly what it says: a 360 view, which includes post-fight; the good and the bad from both camps, and that’s what separates us from our competitors. You’ll see some really compelling footage that no one has ever seen before on that show.
“The Super Six has been a challenging roller coaster. As everyone knows, we’ve been through some ups and downs in this tournament, but one thing is certain: all the fights have been interesting and compelling, many of them more than compelling. … thrilling.
“We have whittled the field down from six to now three and after Saturday night it will be two. So, again, I think the tournament has served its purpose. It’s designed to keep attention on boxing and attention on these great champions throughout the entire 18 months to two years that this has been gong on. It’s certainly done that; in between fights; after fights; before fights. Lots of drama. Lots of politicking and drama out of the ring. There has also been a lot of great action in the ring, so we couldn’t be more thrilled.
“A goal of ours in boxing is to eliminate the idea that a loss is such a setback. And somehow you have to go back to the beginning of the process to rehabilitate yourself. If you’re fighting the best; if you’re fighting the caliber of fighters of Carl Froch and Mikkel Kessler and Glen Johnson and Andre Ward, you’re going to lose. That’s not an indictment of your skill set. It might not be your night, but you deserve the chance to come back and I think we’ve seen what a great champion Carl Froch is and his ability to come back and get right back in the title hunt and now he’s well-positioned to get into the finals.”
Lou DiBella, Event Co-Promoter of DiBella Entertainment:
“This tournament was a wonderful idea. Ken has gotten all the kudos for it and it’s deserved. It’s a great tribute to SHOWTIME Sports in how far they’ve come. SHOWTIME has become a well-rounded sports outfit and Ken and his team deserve all the credit.
“I have the utmost respect for Carl Froch, but remember, an old man showed us a few weeks ago what’s possible if there’s still some greatness left in his body. And there’s still some greatness in the man to my right (Johnson).
“I remember when I made the first call to Ken about Glen joining the tournament. Ken said there’s no way he can make 168. I said, if Glen says he can, he can and he weighed 167 the night of that fight and he weighs 167 now. My co-promoter Leon has been with him for years. I came in three or four years ago and it’s been a tremendous honor to promote “The Road Warrior”. He’s one of the most decent men I know.”
Leon Margules, Event Co-Promoter of Warriors Boxing:
“Thank you to Ken Hershman for allowing Glen this opportunity. Ken has given Glen two great opportunities: Chad Dawson at 175 and now Carl Froch to prove he’s the best 168.
“This is a tremendous event and this goes a long way towards getting boxing where it should be: seeing the best fight the best all the time. I have tremendous respect for Carl but if he thinks he’s fighting Arthur Abraham again, he’s wrong.
“I think Glen after you win this tournament, you should let each of us keep the Cup for a while.”
“We had a great training camp. Everything went well. We went through a lot of stuff we wanted to go through and we came out very successful.
“I have to thank SHOWTIME for considering me for the Super Six. When they heard the name Glen Johnson they could have said, ‘He’s an old guy and it might not go over very popularly,’ but they took a chance on me and I want to say thanks so much. I’m going to go out there and do everything to make you proud and not regret that decision.
“You have to respect a man who can go out there and become a two-time world champ. Every man does it their own way and he found a way. I give him respect.
At the end of the day, it’s a fight. I’m not about lip service or talk. That’s not what I do. I’m about boxing. I will wait for Saturday to finish the rest of the conversation.”
Orlando Cuellar, Johnson’s Trainer
“Carl, congratulations on winning the 168-pound world title, but there will be no finals for you. This will be your last run on Saturday night.
“Glen: you know what he brings. Glen has been there and done that and seen every style. He has beaten every style. No man has ever beaten up Glen Johnson and it won’t be happening in this next fight either. We know Carl’s strengths and we’ll get around those. We know his weaknesses and we’ll expose those. Carl has been in with good fighters, but now he’s in with one of the most successful fighters of the last 10 years.
“I wish Carl luck, but the winner will be Glen Johnson.”
“Glen Johnson’s trainer is delusional. He’s not only not going to win the fight; he’s not going to win a round. I’m too young and fresh. From round one to 12, I will dominate.
“I’m WBC champ and everybody talks about my one loss, against Mikkel Kessler, and 80 percent of the people don’t acknowledge it was a loss. The fight could have gone either way.
“That’s all behind me now I’ve redeemed myself. I’m the first man to out-box and outclass the top KO specialist Arthur Abraham. Nobody had ever put a beating on him.
“I’m getting tired of hearing about how many big fights I’m fighting in a row. That’s why I’m here. I don’t want to fight bums.”
Rob McCracken, Froch’s Trainer:
“I’m a man of few words. Training camp went very well. I know you have to say that, but I know it’s gone really well. He’s focused now. I know he wasn’t 100 percent focused at other fights, but he’s motivated again.
“He’s got a little son he has to take care of. You saw the real Carl Froch in his last fight (a dominant decision over Arthur Abraham). He was fantastic. He’ll be fantastic on Saturday too. Glen is a great road warrior but his journey is over.”
Eddie Hearn, Froch’s Promoter
“I think in any sport in the world, fans and media prefer to see the best fighting the best. Only America could produce a concept like this tournament. It’s been a breath of fresh air for boxing.
“A lot of you don’t know, but in the UK, Carl is one of the greatest fighters who has ever come out of the country. There’s never been a UK fighter fight so many big shows in a row like this.
“Carl Froch is a complete warrior. There’s no person in the world I would rather send into war than Carl Froch.
“Glen has shown us respect, but Carl Froch is on the verge of creating a great legacy in British sports when he wins Saturday and then goes on to fight Andre Ward. We aren’t looking past Glen but we’re all very proud of Carl and we know he’ll do his business on Saturday night and put on a great show.”
Carl Froch vs. Glen Johnson is presented by DiBella Entertainment and Warriors Boxing, in association with Matchroom Sports and Caesars Atlantic City.
Tickets, priced at $300, $150, $100, and $50, can be purchased through the Boardwalk Hall ticket office and any retail Ticketmaster outlet, online at http://www.ticketmaster.com , or by phone at 1-800-745-3000.