By Corey Erdman
Veteran heavyweight contender Michael Grant confirmed rumors that he had been approached about fights with both rising prospect Seth Mitchell and slugger Chris Arreola, however he is only interested in one of them.
"There's only two fights that I want, Chris Arreola and Wladimir Klitschko," said Grant. “I know that I can get Chris out of there.”
Grant, who knocked out Tye Fields in March, has been lobbying for a big fight ever since, and doesn't see himself as the “stepping stone”-type the Mitchell camp is looking for.
“There's nothing promised after that fight (with Mitchell), there's no blueprint. He's the new guy in town, but with Chris, there's a little wear and tear, he's a guy that everybody knows about,” said Grant.
Ironically though, it was just last year that Grant was used as a “tune-up” for Tomasz Adamek, readying him for a bout with Vitali Klitschko. But it was the veteran's performance in a unanimous decision loss that rose his stock amongst boxing insiders, and kept his name present in heavyweight fight discussions.
Grant is quick to insist that he didn't reach his peak in the Adamek bout however.
"I was very disappointed in my performance that night" said Grant. "In the twelfth round, I just went Gung-ho. I said he can't knock me out, so I'm gonna try to knock his head off his shoulders. But if I would have done that starting in the 10th round, he wouldn't have made it 12 rounds."
Despite his displeasure, reviews of the bout were generally positive, and like all Adamek fights, drew quite well at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.. The fight had been passed up by HBO, and landed on Integrated Sports pay-per-view, reportedly because HBO did not approve of Grant as an acceptable opponent. The former world title challenger was last seen on the premium cable airwaves in 2003, when he suffered a knockout loss at the hands of Dominick Guinn on the undercard of Arturo Gatti-Micky Ward III.
In Grant's view, an Arreola scrap would be appealing to HBO, likening it to another boxing classic.
"It's just like George Foreman and Ron Lyle, you've got two punchers in there. Anybody can go at any time," said Grant.
Corey Erdman is a member of the Yahoo boxing ratings committee, and a host at theScore on SIRIUS 158. Follow him on Twitter @corey_erdman