By Rick Reeno
MGM Grand, Las Vegas - Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach has already mapped out a strategy for Antonio DeMarco (30-3-1, 23KOs) to overcome Brandon Rios (31-2-1, 23KOs). The battle of former champions is being discussed for a potential summer clash at a catch-weight of 143-pounds.
Roach has already gone up against Rios. The veteran coach's star fighter, Manny Pacquiao, dominated Rios over twelve rounds last November in Macau.
The key to beat Rios is outboxing him, says Roach, because the tough slugger has an iron chin that is capable of absorbing big punches all night.
"[Rios is a fight] a fight where we have to box. We have a game plan to win a twelve round decision. [DeMarco is] not going to out-bang him, he's going to have to box him. He can't get too wild. He's a pretty good boxer when he wants to be," Roach told BoxingScene.com.
"The more weight Rios weighs, the more he's not in shape - because he's lazy. He's a lazy kid. He had no business fighting Manny at 147, he was fat."
Roach is actually going to use DeMarco to help prepare Miguel Cotto for his June 7th HBO Pay-Per-View showdown with WBC middleweight champion Sergio Martinez.
"DeMarco fit in pretty well. Do you know why I brought DeMarco in? He brings the height and the southpaw stance. He's a little but too small [compared to Martinez], but I can use him at the end for sparring and so forth. It would be good for both of them. Miguel has sparred with world champions. DeMarco is a former world champion, but he's still very young and he's still learning," Roach said.