Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

Chris Algieri Has No Desire To Cross Over To MMA

By Jake Donovan

A ridiculous 20-year ban in place for mixed martial arts left New York State as the only location in the U.S. to have disallowed sanctioning in the sport. A long overdue reversal of such policy took place on Tuesday, with the historic ruling met with plans from combat sports giant Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) to bring its game to town on the first available date.

The move has been met with overwhelming embrace by many, but also raises the question of how it will affect the next generation of athletes in the New York area in determining which combat sports field to pursue. It was a fair inquiry that was posed to Chris Algieri, the former 140 lb. titlist from the Huntington section of Long Island, New York with a background in wresting and on a championship level in kickboxing.

His brief title reign was preceded by his becoming a sizeable draw in his hometown. The charismatic Long Islander generated interest to the point of his promoter Star Boxing continuing to stage events in front of sold-out crowds at Paramount Theatre in Huntington despite his long ago outgrowing the circuit.

chris-algieri (3) (720x480)_1

Algieri’s next ring appearance will come on April 16, where he serves – on paper – as the stiffest test to date for unbeaten welterweight contender Errol Spence. The bout will air live on NBC from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, where Algieri will fight for the fourth time in his past five starts. It’s where he claimed his 140-pound title in an upset win over Ruslan Provodnikov in 2014 and where he will continue to carry on his goal of becoming a two-division champ.

Should he not reemerge among the title fray, there are plenty of other options for Algieri, given his combat sports background and his college Master’s degree in clinical nutrition. One such option he emphatically removes from the table is ever doubling as an MMA fighter.

“That is a resounding no,” Algieri (21-2, 8KOs) firmly stated during a media conference call that briefly deviated from his upcoming bout with Spence (19-0, 16KOs). “I am living my dream now. I told myself as a child I wanted to be a championship boxer. Boxing for me is a passion. If the passion is not there, then there is no need for me to be doing this. UFC is not a passion.”

Of course, boxing became a passion due to it functionally serving as the only game in town, at least on the pro level and from the perspective of making a lucrative living. Algieri was all of 13 years old when MMA was banned in New York State in 1997, at which point he was in the process of making the transformation from karate to kickboxing, before adding kickboxing and – of course – boxing to his résumé. 

But what if he grew up with MMA – and specifically UFC – as part of his every day life?

“That could be possible,” Algieri, 32, admits of having possibly crossed over at some point. “I can’t say definitely not. If I grew up a different way, growing up to different heroes, who’s to say I don’t see things a different way.”

What he will be seeing on April 16 is an unbeaten rising young star deemed by many as the standout member of the 2012 U.S. Olympic boxing team. While Algieri represents the toughest test to date for the 26-year old Spence, the crossroads bout comes at a point when the former champ is in career flux.

The aforementioned win over Provodnikov was parlayed into a lucrative showdown with then-welterweight titlist Manny Pacquiao. Algieri came up miles short in their Nov. ’14 clash, but has yet to truly reclaim title-worthy status since that showing overseas in Macau. He offered a competitive performance in a points loss to fellow former 140-pound titlist Amir Khan last May, followed by a closer-than-expected 10-round decision win over Erick Bone last December.

Both fights showed his fighting heart, but he remains a heavy underdog heading into April 16. Still, he enjoys the benefit of fighting at home (or at least an hour or so away, much closer than Spence’s trek from Desoto, Texas) in a venue that has provided great moments – and hopefully one more in the only sport he truly loves.

“I’ve had some of my best performances at Barclays. I believe April 16 will be another,” Algieri insists. “Training camp has been terrific. Our conditioning is optimal and I’m looking forward to a great night of boxing on April 16.”

Jake Donovan is the managing editor of BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by KingTito on 03-25-2016

[QUOTE=Eff Pandas;16558779]MMA isn't for everyone. I do tend to think Algieri could do well at it with his kickboxing + boxing skills. Learn some sprawl + some ground skills & his good to go. That said as a notable boxing…

Comment by Eff Pandas on 03-25-2016

MMA isn't for everyone. I do tend to think Algieri could do well at it with his kickboxing + boxing skills. Learn some sprawl + some ground skills & his good to go. That said as a notable boxing person…

Comment by ChiCityExtractz on 03-25-2016

Boxing makes wayyyyy more money than MMA. MMA isn't worth it at this point, there's so many ways to lose in MMA. & while that's cool to the guy who takes pride in his MMA, it's not cool for boxers.…

Comment by BufordTannen on 03-25-2016

He prob makes more than most of the top 10 pfp mma fighters

Comment by trainhard_187 on 03-25-2016

[QUOTE=Nomadic;16557757]When did he become a boxer?[/QUOTE] He was hired by Bob Arum to fight Pacquiao when Arum had no one to line Manny up with that was under Arums Top Prank stable, Algieri was originally a 3rd grade substitute home…

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (9)
Top Headlines Eduardo Hernandez Targets Francisco Vargas Eliminator Arum Will Speak With Pacquiao About Crawford, Lomachenko Usyk, Gassiev Arrive in Moscow - Ready For WBSS Final Nelson: Povetkin is a Serious, Serious Threat For Anthony Joshua Floyd Mayweather Tops Forbes Richest Celebrities List Hearn: Povetkin Extremely Dangerous, AJ Will Make a Statement Fabian Maidana vs. Andrey Klimov Lands on Garcia-Easter News: Mykquan Williams, Roney Hines, Frank Galarza, More Carl Frampton vs. Luke Jackson - Undercard Update - 2 Team Lomachenko: Pacquiao Must Go To 135 - No Catch-Weight! Manny Pacquiao: I Still Have Two or Three Fights Left in Me Photos: Manny Pacquiao Arrives Home To a Hero's Welcome Andrew Moloney vs. Luis Concepcion on September 8 Joshua-Povetkin Officially Announced; 9/22 at Wembley Stadium Trainer: I Guarantee Mikey Garcia Will Regret Facing Easter! Pacquiao 'Thinking About' Working With Freddie Roach Again Pacquiao: Khan, Crawford, Lomachenko All Potential Opponents Callum Johnson Warns: Beterbiev Will Know He's Been in a Fight! Liam Smith Confident of Shocking Jaime Munguia, Explains Why British and English Title News: Askin vs. Okolie Sent To Bids Pacquiao Wants Next Fight In U.S.; Arum Says Tax Debt Not $20M Horn's Promoter: Pacquiao's Win Proves He's Not Past It! Pacquiao: If Mayweather Comes Back - Let's Do a Second One! Pacquiao's Win Over Matthysse A Blessing And A Curse Atlas: Pacquiao Beat a Heavy Bag; Diminished Matthysse Quit! Pacquiao: Matthysse Was Hurt From The Punches, Looked Scared Pacquiao Says Buboy Warned Him To Avoid 'Marquez' Mistakes Jose Pedraza Expects a Very Tough Outing With Ray Beltran Manny Pacquiao: Do I Look Old? I'm Back! Lucas Matthysse is Not Sure About The Future of His Career Usyk: I Have No Fear of Fighting Murat Gassiev in Russia Jeff Horn Calls Out Manny Pacquiao For a Rematch Pacquiao: From Round 1, I Knew He Couldn't Handle My Power! Brandon Cook: Brook Fight is Off, Brook Has Ankle Injury Pacquiao Gives High Praise To Buboy as New Head Trainer RBF Exec: We Secured QF/SF Fights For The WBSS Season 2 Pacquiao: Like I Said - I'm Not Gone From Boxing, I'm Still Here! Photos: Pacquiao Crushes Matthysse For First KO Win Since 09 Photos: Regis Prograis Breaks Down Velasco For TKO, WBSS Slot Photos: Teofimo Lopez Beats Down, Stops William Silva
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement