Steve Cunningham Plans For Career Best Performance

By Keith Idec

You name it, Steve Cunningham has heard the criticism approaching his rematch against Tomasz Adamek.

He wasn’t a big puncher at cruiserweight, so he’s not fit for fighting at heavyweight. His chin, which wasn’t exactly Vitali Klitschko-like below 200 pounds, won’t withstand heavyweight power. Adamek is too experienced at heavyweight for Cunningham to face him in just Cunningham’s second fight at that weight.

Cunningham dismisses all of it, despite that the 36-year-old Philadelphia native is nearly a 3-1 underdog entering their 12-round, nationally televised, heavyweight rematch Saturday at Sands Casino Resort’s Events Center in Bethlehem, Pa. (NBC; 4 p.m. ET).

“A fight is a fight,” said Cunningham, who lost a split decision and the IBF cruiserweight championship in his first fight against Adamek four years ago in Newark, N.J. “Listen, I came up, before boxing, street fighting. It wasn’t no weight classes, it wasn’t no gloves. It was sometimes weapons — I got stabbed before. People say I’ve got this crazy, great heart. That’s where it came from, Philadelphia, fighting in schools, fighting in the streets. Then I went into a gym. So all the heart I got from that prepared me for this.

“I say God has a plan, so I guess that was part of his plan. I have no fear of any man on this planet. [Adamek] has done great things as a heavyweight. I think he did a great job in his career, but he’s fighting Steve Cunningham again. I don’t want to make it as close as it was the last time, so we’re willing to put on a great performance, probably the best performance you’ve ever seen out of me.”

Before Adamek (49-2, 27 KOs), of Kearny, N.J., and Cunningham (25-4, 12 KOs) square off again, NBC will broadcast an eight-round heavyweight bout between Ukraine’s Vyacheslav Glazkov (13-0, 9 KOs) and New York’s Tor Hamer (19-1, 12 KOs). The Glazkov-Hamer match will be the first bout broadcast by NBC since May 2004.

Keith Idec covers boxing for The Record and Herald News, of Woodland Park, N.J., and He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Post a Comment - View More User Comments (0)
Top Headlines Hekkie Budler Aims To Bounce Back at Kempton Park Josh Taylor Continues To Rise By Drilling Dave Ryan in Edinburgh Magdaleno on Track To Make 122-Pounds For Donaire Title Shot Hassan N'Dam Aims To Revamp Career, Hires Pedro Diaz Shane Mosley: I'm Semi-Retired - But For Right Opponent I'll Fight! For Better or Worse, Heavyweight Glory Still Runs Through Klitschko Golovkin's Coach: Mayweather Deserves Catch-Weight, NOT Canelo! Frank Warren: Klitschko Does NOT Deserve Shot at WBA Title! What To Do With Tyson Fury? - BoxingScene Ratings Update Arum Explains Manny Pacquiao's Lack of Knockouts Since 2009 McGuigan: Frampton Will Make an Impact in Vegas With Santa Cruz Golovkin Warns Saunders: I Want Your Belt, That is My Goal! Joe Hanks, Denis Douglin Return To Action on November 5 Manny Pacquiao Gets in One Last Workout Before Leaving To LA Hearn: I 100% Want Anthony Joshua vs. David Haye in 2017 Parker vs. Ruiz: Duco Looking For Goverment Funding For Event Jean Pascal Not Yet Ready For Ring Return, Says Trainer Photo: Victor Terrazas, Eduardo Hernandez on Weight For War Vargas: It's My Time, After I Beat Pacquiao - A Star Will Be Born! Erislandy Lara Still Has a Target on The Back of Gennady Golovkin Photos: Luis Nery, Richie Mepranum Set For War in Tijuana Joselito Velasquez, Mexican Olympian, To Be Trained By Robles Wladimir Klitschko, Lucas Browne Far Apart On Money For 12/10 Photos: Canelo is Officially Belted in Puerto Rico By The WBO Cotto Says Canelo Rematch is a Subject For Discussion Danny Williams Returns, Faces Ali Eren Demirezen in Hamburg Edis Tatli Takes on Manuel Lancia on December 17 Canelo vs. Saunders Showdown Fully Backed By WBO Prez Weights: David Lemieux, Cristian Fabian Rios Ready To Fight Eggington Predicts Damage: I'm Going To Do a Job on Gavin Jeff Horn Ready For IBF Strap: 100%, Bring on Errol Spence! Hooker Plans on Testing Perez's Chin Early on Kovalev vs. Ward Marin, Pintor Make Weight For Boxeo Telemundo Season Finale Photo: Micki Nielsen, Kevin Lerena Ready For Battle Abel Sanchez Very Confident That Andy Ruiz Beats Joseph Parker Frampton: I'll Make it Two-Nil, Santa Cruz Only Fights One Way! Golovkin's Coach: I Doubt Canelo Will Last Eight or Nine Rounds Jeff Horn Crushes Rico Mueller As Title Shot Nears David Haye: Fans Want Me To Smash Tony Bellew, Shut Him Up Joshua Taylor Tabbed To Become World Champion By McGuigan

Latest Active Forum Threads