Peter Quillin continues forth on his boxing career, where a world title opportunity against any of the super middleweight titleholders is a realistic goal.
Quillin’s goal though may differ from that of most boxers as he believes he should use his platform to help others on a personal and social level.
First, he has to take care of business tonight, when he square off against Alfredo Angulo at the RaboBank Arena in Bakersfield, California. The 10-round bout will headline a three-bout telecast on FS1 (10:30 p.m. ET/ 7:30 p.m. PT).
At Friday’s weigh-in, Quillin weighed in at 168.8 pounds. Angulo weighed 167.6 pounds.
Quillin (34-1-1 1 ND, 23 knockouts), who resides in Brooklyn, New York, last fought on Apr. 13 in Minneapolis, fighting to a no-decision against Caleb Truax. The fight was stopped after the second round after the ringside physician ruled a cut Truax suffered over his eye from an accidental clash of heads was too severe to continue.
The 36-year-old is favored to defeat Angulo tonight, and while there is the possibility for Quillin to face bigger challenges in the ring, it is what he wants to outside the ring that would give him greater satisfaction. Quillin wants to use his status to help others spiritually and socially, something he said was missing over the last couple of years.
“I made a conscious decision to accept God and to help as many people as possible,” Quillin told BoxingScene over the phone Thursday. “I know that (tonight) is a showcase for me and you will see the best Peter Quillin in the ring, but I’m also using boxing to speak about life and helping others. I see a lot of struggle, especially with kids. I found God and He is real and I want to use what I have to help others in need.”
Quillin has fought sporadically over the last couple of years. Tonight will be the first time since 2015 where he will fight at least twice in a calendar year and his fourth fight since suffering his only loss at the hands of fellow Brooklyn fighter Daniel Jacobs in December of 2015.
Before the Jacobs fight, Quillin admits he was not focused in his fight and had distractions around him.
“I had a lot of struggles when I fought Jacobs,” said Quillin, who won his first and only world title in October of 2012 by defeating Hassan N’Dam. “There were people around me who I thought were my friends. Money. There were lots of people around me. That loss was like a knockdown in my life where I needed to pick myself up and that moment was God saying that he was not happy with the way I was living. I took time after that fight to correct my life.”
Quillin spent the next several months learning more about his private life and family history. He has seven siblings spread throughout the world.
“I’m the only person in my family who has met all my siblings. My Dad had eight children with four different women. I have a brother in Barcelona, Spain and a few siblings in Cuba.”
Angulo (25-7, 21 KOs), who is originally from Mexicali, Mexico and now resides in Coachella, Mexico, has also fought sporadically over the last several months. He knocked out Evert Bravo in the second round of his last bout on Apr. 20, his first win in almost four years.
A loss to Angulo would be catastrophic for Quillin’s pursuit of again fighting for a world title in 2020, but he believes what he has accomplished and his current personal status far exceeds successes in the ring.
“I know I’m fighting and I’m supposed to beat Angulo, but I have no fear. I’ve already won in life and I’m fighting to celebrate what I’ve accomplished. The most important thing I did was win a world title (against N’Dam) and now I give Glory to God. I’m committed to honestly helping people who are going through struggles. I want them to find the same path to God.”
Quillin is ranked No. 4 by the IBF and there is a likelihood he could fight in a world title eliminator against any of the top available fighters in that sanctioning body.
Even with a possible world title shot within reach, Quillin is still focused on doing what he can to fulfill spiritual and personal goals of helping people and putting them in a path towards God and success. Because of his past experiences and connection to God, he also wants a different nickname as well.
“I went through a lot spiritually and it was my therapy. The battles I had in the past were real, but so is victory. I have no fear. I have good intentions.”
“I know people known me as ‘Kid Chocolate,’ but I also want to be known as ‘Suffering Servant.’”
Francisco A. Salazar has written for Boxingscene since September of 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing