Donaire: Montiel is a "Do or Die Fight, I Must Survive!"

By Chris Robinson

Nonito Donaire Jr. is less than a month away from his biggest challenge as a professional yet you wouldn't sense it being around the 28-year old former champion. Donaire is currently training in the confines of the Undisputed Boxing Gym in San Carlos, California, gearing himself up for the seasoned challenge of veteran bantamweight champion Fernando Montiel, whom he meets on February 19th at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada.

I caught up with Donaire on Monday and was able to witness his sessions against three younger sparring partners, all of whom gave him a different look while in battle. After Donaire's time in the gym we were able to sit down and discuss the importance of his fight with Montiel and his aspirations outside of the ring.
Continue reading for Donaire's thoughts on February 19th, why he doesn't feel nervous whatsoever, how he plans on dealing with Montiel's power, and his thoughts towards reaching out and touching the lives of others...
A surreal moment...
"It is kind of. Because this is the biggest fight of my career. This is the biggest guy I have ever faced in terms of experience and just the status of who he is. I'm excited. I'm actually in tremendous shape right now. I wish the fight was this week because I'm in shape and the hardest thing to do right now is to just maintain this mentality and this hunger. I still have a few more weeks to go but I feel good. I'm just very excited for it."
Do or die...
"This is the first time I felt like my life is on the line. Like it is a do or die. I have to protect everything I have. It's kind of like a feeling, like I feel like this is the first time my life is on the line and I feel like it's a do or die thing. I must survive, I have to survive, I have to get through it. There is no fear. There is no nothing. It's just excitement. It's just an eagerness to get in there and to prove myself and like I said I want to do my best out there. There is nothing else in my mind but defeating this guy and it's just weird. There is no fear, no nothing, no nervousness. Maybe when the fight gets close or when we are walking in the ring I might get butterflies but for now I don't see it coming. I'm willing to risk everything going into that ring."
My own weapons...
"I faced guys who are strong. I've faced guys who are stronger than them. I faced guys who threw more punches. I faced guys who have a tremendous punch like him. I have my own weapons, my own strengths, and I feel that I hit stronger than him. I hit harder than him. That's how it is. If I do get caught, knock on wood, I'm here to win. I'm really focused. Usually when I'm in that ring I'm really settled and I'm really focused. And I know what to do out there, regardless if something unexpected happens. That is to calm myself and be smart about it."
The art of sparring...
"I'm ready. The sparring helps me. It's a simulation of how in shape I am. How much I can push myself and from the way it looks I am in tremendous shape. I am ready and I should be sparring six or eight rounds at this moment but I am going ten or maybe twelve rounds already this week. The mentality of it all is that it gives me confidence that I can reach that many rounds with the heavier gloves. With headgear, with all of that stuff, with little time to recover."
Getting past Montiel...
"I think it just helps out boxing to put two guys, two good fighters, in that ring and it helps me tremendously. It helps boxing tremendously. It's exciting. People look forward to it. With a guy like Montiel, there is no doubt of what I am capable of if I can get past this."
Inspiring others...
"My goal is to inspire others. There are kids that need help. There are kids that have no outlet to be inspired, to be showed that they can have anything and everything they want come true. Because they know they can make it happen. I made it happen, but the thing is, I had it in the back of my head that I was destined to be something. It was always in the back of my head. I just want to reach out to the people that need help because 90% of people out there need help. As much as people don't realize that, they need inspiration. That's just me."

Chris Robinson is based out of Las Vegas, Nevada. An archive of his work can be found here , and he can be reached at [email protected]

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Epie2 on 01-27-2011

Had Z Gorres possessed Donaire's power or the referee been not too eager to deduct a point when Gorres clinched in two occasions, Montiel would've lost his title to Gorres.

Comment by bluetuazon on 01-27-2011

[QUOTE=dorruel2.0;10016298]sorry nonito. You will NOT survive. Montiel is going to spark this kid out[/QUOTE] u wanna bet on it??

Comment by bluetuazon on 01-27-2011

[QUOTE=dj Cute!;10015759]Montiel is going to send him to hell[/QUOTE] do u wanna double my points??? my 4mill to your 8??? nonito>>montiel....

Comment by PRBOXINGCOTTO on 01-27-2011

its not a do or die you already have the rematch given it is a big coming out party and payday lose or win more big fights will happen with these 2

Comment by dorruel2.0 on 01-27-2011

sorry nonito. You will NOT survive. Montiel is going to spark this kid out

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