By Bill "Two Scoops" Emes
Undefeated Former IBF champion Paul Spadafora (47-0-1, 19 KO’s) is currently wrapping up training camp in Ambridge, PA finalizing his preparations for his upcoming fight with Nigerian-born Australian WBO Oriental Champion Solomon Egberime (22-3-1, 11 KO) in a scheduled 10-round main event at the Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort in Chester, WV on December 1st. Spadafora, world ranked in the WBA at No. 11, and in the WBC at No. 17, last defeated Humberto Toledo in August and feels that a win in this fight with Egberime will springboard him into the discussion to take on any of the big names in two of boxing's talent rich divisions of either 140 or 147.
"I'm ready", said Spadafora from his training camp in Ambridge, PA. "We've done all of the preparations, we've added a few wrinkles, and we have plans A,B, and C ready for Egberime. We're ready to be aggressive when we need to be, and come off the pedal when we don't, I'm just ready to do my thing on December 1st."
Spadafora was an extremely interested observer this past Saturday, and while he was busy training while the bout aired, he was shocked when he received word of Ricky Hatton's surprise KO loss to Vyacheslav Senchenko in Manchester. Spadafora made it clear that he felt with a win in his upcoming bout this Saturday, that he expects to be strongly considered for the spot against Malignaggi that was left abandoned with Hatton's loss. "That was a blessing in disguise," said an excited Spadafora, "I deserve that spot."
Spadafora has no love loss for the Brooklyn based motor-mouthed Malignaggi, who holds the 147 lb. WBA strap which he lifted off Hatton vanquisher Vyacheslav Senchenko last April. He opened up about an encounter he had with the Magic Man years ago at an Arturo Gatti pre-fight party thrown by HBO. "He was just real disrespectful man" shared an irritated Spadafora. "He was just real young at the time and had just won the title, he basically just acted very dismissive towards me, like he was better than me or something." That encounter has stuck with Spadafora all these years.
"I'm a fan of the guy, I was one of the few guys who thought he got the win vs. Cano", said Spadafora of the brash Brooklynite, "But I'm an 'A' fighter, and he is not. You can't call this guy an elite fighter.... Let's face it, every time he's stepped up, he's lost. He stepped up against Cotto, gutsy performance, but was beaten badly. When he fought Hatton, again he came up short.... and we can't forget about Khan."
"With me you know what you're getting, a guy that has never lost a fight", Spadafora continued. "I'm not a guy who's out there fighting for money or fame.... I'm just fighting to prove to my kids that I belong with all these guys, that their dad fought everyone."
Spadafora was also vocal about the notion that Dmitriy "Star of David" Salita was another name in the mix to secure the fight with Malignaggi on February 9th. He scoffed at the idea that Salita was in any way worthy of facing Malignaggi, asserting "C'mon B, I was at that last fight in Brooklyn man, dude struggled with a guy in a 6 rounder.... that's just crazy stuff..... that fight with Salita would be a straight up mismatch... That's f****d up if the boxing world lets that fight happen."
"A fight with me and Malignaggi is a throwback, a must see fight... Two Italians, in his hometown, and me taking his title in front of his hometown fans, what more can you ask for, " laughed a jovial Spadafora.