Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

Kermit Cintron: The Killer Reborn

By Thomas Gerbasi

It may have been the sign Kermit Cintron needed that everything was going to be all right. Seven months removed from his last fight, a ten round decision win over Jonathan Batista in Miami, Oklahoma, the former welterweight champion knew that he wanted to make another run at a title, but he knew things had to change for him to get there.

The first order of business was reuniting both personally and professionally with strength and conditioning coach Joe Pastore, who was with Cintron (along with trainer Marshall Kauffman) back in the early years of his career. The next was bringing in a new trainer in the form of Javan “Sugar” Hill, the nephew of the late Emanuel Steward and a rising star in the coaching biz in his own right. It was risky to revamp everything at the age of 34, but as soon as he started hitting the mitts with Hill, it all came together again.

“The first day I started working pads with him, I didn’t see anything but Emanuel Steward in front of me while he was holding pads,” said Cintron, who worked with the legendary Steward from 2006 to 2008. “Of course it was Javan, but it shows how much he knows and he’s so identical to Emanuel’s philosophy.”

Cintron showed solid form under Steward’s tutelage, winning the IBF welterweight crown against Mark Suarez, and successfully defending the title twice with stoppages of Walter Matthysse and Jesse Feliciano before losing his belt to Antonio Margarito in their 2008 rematch.

Over the next five years, Cintron was in a wilderness of sorts, looking like a world beater at moments, and merely average in others. A 2011 stoppage loss to Saul “Canelo” Alvarez seemed to be the nail in the coffin of his career, and a 16 month layoff ensued before he returned in 2013 with a draw against Adrian Granados and the win over Batista. He still wasn’t the old “Killer.”

“It’s been a very hard couple years for me,” he said. “There have been times when I just wanted to drop it and move on with other things. But I know I still have it in me, and by getting Joe back on my team and with Javan, I can definitely get back on top.”

On Saturday, Cintron’s audition comes on the Tomasz Adamek vs. Vyacheslav Glazkov undercard in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania against fellow PA resident Ronald Cruz. It’s a fight the 20-2 Cruz has been chasing after for a while, something that was news to Cintron until late last year.

“I didn’t know anything at all about Cruz,” he said. “It just happened that my brother sparred with him a couple years back, and a friend called me a couple months before the fight was even mentioned and said that he (Cruz) was calling me out. I didn’t even know who the dude was, so I ignored it. Then he fought again and another buddy of mine called me and he said ‘hey, this guy Ronald Cruz has been calling you out.’ Who is this? (Laughs) So I went to his last fight. The kid’s got a good record and he wants to fight, so let’s make it happen. I’m a fighter and I’ll fight whoever.”

The upside is clear for the 27-year-old Cruz – he beats Cintron and it’s the biggest win on his record by far. You would think that beating the relatively unknown Cruz doesn’t do much for Cintron, but it may just be the biggest fight of his career. With a loss, that may be it for him; win, and he keeps his championship dreams alive. And that’s what all the blood, sweat, and tears in the gym are for.

“Joe and Javan believe in me, and they’ve been pushing me really hard,” he said. “Things have been going great, and it seems like I’ve been getting back to my old self.”

If Cintron is on, he’s a tough out. And back at welterweight, there are plenty of attractive options for him, but as a mature fighter who knows what looking too far ahead can do to you, he’s not looking any further than Saturday.

“I’m taking it a fight at a time,” he said. “I just want to come out of there victorious and look sharp. My last two fights I didn’t look as good, but just bringing Joe and Javan back to my team, things have been a lot better for me and I’ve been looking and feeling a lot better. My attitude has changed too. I’m really motivated now to get back in this and make it right.”

That’s the biggest motivation of all – to make it right. Cintron admits that he’s not spending every waking hour outside of the gym watching fight tapes, as that time belongs to his family, but he has seen that former foes Alvarez and Alfredo Angulo headlined a Pay-Per-View show last weekend, and that another opponent that he fought to a draw with – Sergio Martinez – has a huge bout coming up with Miguel Cotto. It’s enough to make a still young man believe that there are big opportunities left for him.

And he may be right. With Hill and Pastore in the corner and Cintron knowing that this is likely the last go round, it could just be the perfect storm for a memorable comeback. It’s one that would be nice for Cintron’s legacy in the sport, but not one that’s necessary for him to walk away from the sport with his head held high. He’s already reached the top of the sport and fought some of the best of his era; that’s more than most can say.

So this comeback, it’s strictly personal.

This one’s for him.

“I’ve accomplished a lot in this sport and I became a world champion, but I just feel like I didn’t do enough,” said Cintron. “I haven’t done enough yet.”

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Roja's480 on 03-13-2014

[QUOTE=Bushid***333;;14321795]Nobody named Kermit can be a Killer.[/QUOTE] :rofl::rofl::rofl: [IMG]https://i.chzbgr.com/maxW500/3312880640/h2BBBCB32/[/IMG]

Comment by Bushidō on 03-13-2014

Nobody named Kermit can be a Killer.

Comment by humanpunchingbg on 03-13-2014

Kermit "The Chillón" Cintron I remember he said he wanted to catch Margarito slippin on the streets after the wraps scandal.:lol1:

Comment by PRBOXINGCOTTO on 03-13-2014

Cintron is done why bother with the article lol

Comment by deanrw on 03-12-2014

I'll always remember him as Kermit "Frog Leap" Cintron.

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (38)
Top Headlines Photos: Maurice Hooker, Alex Saucedo - Go Face To Face Fury: Roach Can Do Whatever He Wants In Corner On Fight Night Ladarius Miller vs. Ricardo Garcia Tops Mayweather Card, 12/7 Uzcategui: No KO - I Want To Give Plant The Beating of His Life! Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury Non-TV Undercard Information Porter: WBC Mandatory Orders Derailed Immediate Spence Bout Kerman Lejarraga vs. Frankie Gavin is Picked Up By ESPN+ Lopez Confident He Can Give Thurman a Run For His Money Arias Vows To Beat Down and Bloody Rosado For "Bitch" Claim Karl Dargan Returns To Action on Bivol vs. Pascal Card Tyson Fury Secures Freddie Roach To Be in Corner For Wilder Mark Heffron vs. Liam Williams on Warrington-Frampton Card WBA Won't Strip Charr; Miller-Dinu Unlikely To Be Title Fight Bivol: I'm Confident That I'll Make a Statement With Pascal Filip Hrgovic vs. Ytalo Perea on December 8t in Zagreb Santa Cruz: To Prove I'm The Best at 126 - I Have To Beat Russell Danny Garcia Backs Adrien Broner To Upset Manny Pacquiao Errol Spence: I Don't Think Keith Thurman Will Ever Fight Me Frampton: If I Beat Warrington - I Want Another Champion Next Charlo Brothers Promise Fireworks, Explosive Wins in Barclays Warrington-Frampton: Nathan Gorman, Arthur, Wright Added Darren Tetley Looks To Bigger Things After Warburton Win Fielding Motivated By Fear, Doubters To Topple Canelo Hosea Burton: I'd Love To Punch Anthony Yarde's Face In! Canelo Feels Mikey Garcia Has a Very Tough Task With Spence Josh Warrington Sees Flaws To Exploit in Oscar Valdez Hooker Warns: I Can Do Some Real Damage To Saucedo's Career! Spence: People Think Garcia is Crazy - This is a Legacy Fight Photos: Danny Garcia, Figueroa-Molina, Uzcategui-Plant - Presser Photos: Porter-Ugas, Santa Cruz-Flores, Dirrell-Yildirim - Presser Photos: Spence-Garcia, Thurman-Lopez, Quillin-Truax - Presser Mikey Garcia on Spence: This Time Little Guy Beats Bigger Man! Keith Thurman: I'm Back, I Plan on Reclaiming My WBC Belt! Premier Boxing Champions, FOX Sports Reveal 2019 Schedule Peterson-Lipinets, Quillin-Truax To Headline FS1 Shows News: Antonio Vargas, Anvar Yunusov, Jean Carlos Torres Jarrell Miller is Interested in Facing Whyte-Chisora 2 Winner Gilberto Ramirez, Jesse Hart Promise a War on December 14 Spence-Garcia To Be Announced As FOX PPV March 16 Gennady Golovkin is 'No. 1 Choice' For Callum Smith, Says Hearn
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement