WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Wednesday May 11, Washington, D.C.’s undefeated Dusty Hernandez-Harrison (29-0, 16 KOs) and Bakersfield, California’s Mike “The Silent Assassin” Dallas Jr. (21-3-1, 10 KOs) participated in a final press conference in advance of their May 13 fight at the DC Armory. Hernandez-Harrison vs. Dallas Jr. will headline a throne boxing event in a 10-round welterweight bout that will be televised live on BET beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT and streamed live on global music and entertainment platform, TIDAL.com. Photos by Hoganphotos
Co-featured fighter Thomas “KO” Snow (18-2, 12 KOs) of Washington, D.C., who faces Dorado, Puerto Rico’s Orlando “Orlandito” Del Valle (20-2, 15 KOs), and undercard fighters Mike Balogun (5-0, 4 KOs) of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, who will fight Capitol Heights, Maryland’s Devon Mosley (0-4-1), and Greenbelt, Maryland’s Sam “Vanilla Gorilla” Crossed (2-0, 1 KO) of who takes on Damion Reed (2-13, 1 KO) of Danville Virginia were also in attendance.
“I think a lot of people are underestimating Mike Dallas Jr. I think they’re counting him out too early. A lot of times when people come back from a tough loss they train harder, they take it more seriously and erase all the mistakes they made in previous training camps, so that’s what I’m expecting him to do. Luckily Barry Hunter [Hernandez-Harrison’s trainer] knows him well as a fighter, so I’ve been going off of what he says.
“I’ve been getting great sparring in. I came home from sparring Canelo Alvarez and went right into to sparring with Lamont Peterson, Austin Trout, Demetrius Hopkins and other fighters on the card. Just really good sparring.
“I’m excited to fight on BET. It’s pretty cool. I think it’s good to bring boxing to a new audience. Hopefully, I put on a good fight to get them entertained. And we have Justine Skye performing before our bout. She’s got a completely different fan base than I do and I think it’s another good way to add a new audience to our event.
“I took a lot of things out of training with Canelo at his training camp. It was good to get a different perspective of a training camp. Usually it’s all about me, everything is catered to me and everyone is concerned about me, so it was good to take a step back and see how someone like him at the top level prepares for a world title fight. Luckily, I walked away knowing I’ve been doing everything right.
“Fighting in my hometown of Washington, D.C. is better for me. I feel like I have more to fight for. I have more to lose, which for me helps. You’ll never hear me say “no mas” in D.C.
“At my age, my preparation changes with every fight. I remember fighting in Connecticut in April then Miami in August, which seems really close, but Billy Briscoe [Hernandez-Harrison’s assistant trainer] was there and said ‘you’ve gotten so much stronger.’ That’s just the age that I am right now. I’m really maturing and getting that man strength. Every fight I feel a lot stronger.”
MIKE “THE SILENT ASSASSIN” DALLAS JR.:
“I feel very good ahead of this fight…confident and strong. I’m just ready to go out there and perform. There’s more pressure on him than me fighting in his hometown.
“I’ve gotten good training in for this fight. The Bay Area has a lot of good sparring out there right now. I had good training with Ben Bautista [Dallas Jr.’s trainer] and we’ve been pushing it. I had to dig deep in training to get through it and I’m ready to dig deep in the fight.
“I took some time off to let my body rest and heal and to let my mind get together. Now I feel great. I’m ready to come back and get back on top of things. I’m going to go out there and do my thing.
“I know Dusty is a pretty good fighter. I know he can box. I’m just ready to go out there, be smart and execute the game plan. I’m ready for people to know I’m back and there mentally. I’m ready to get back in the game and take care of these people in these bigger fights.”
THOMAS “KO” SNOW:
“I know my opponent [Orlando Del Valle] is a conventional fighter from Puerto Rico. He’s a basic fighter…a basic one-two puncher. He’s the best opponent I’ve faced to date. Both of us have two losses, so I know it’s a crossroads fight for us. We’re going to go in there and do what we came to do.
“I’ve fought in D.C. a lot of times. It’s my home.
“It’s awesome because I’ve known Dusty since he was six years old. We used to run together. We were just talking about that over in the corner. If you watch at any of his amateur fights, you’ll hear me in the background cheering him on. I’ve been in his life for a long time and it’s awesome seeing a young guy get his opportunity and make the sport of boxing grow.
“I know our amateur program in D.C. is awesome so you have to give a shout out to all the amateurs. D.C. is about to be the mecca of boxing once again. We will have six, seven or eight champions in the District of Columbia. It’s rich with boxing.
“I think fighting on BET is a great thing. I think it’s great that boxing is on free TV now and people don’t have to pay for it. For those people who can’t afford those things, I think it’s awesome for them and I think it will make the sport of boxing better.
“I’ve changed a lot over the years. I’m supposed to be dead, locked up or in jail. Having God in your life, your perspective of life and everything changes. I’m calm and comfortable in my situation. I thank God for the opportunity. I thank Roc Nation Sports for the opportunity and I thank everybody who is supporting Thomas “KO” Snow. We’re ready to do it.”
“During my career, when I was playing football, I used boxing as another form of training for cardio. After my career was over, it was natural for me to keep training and now we’re here. Football is a business. I got released and had another opportunity to play in the Canadian Football League as well as the Arena Football League, but football takes a toll on your body and I played the game for a long time. It was just natural for me to transition. I still needed something to stay active, because without activity, I didn’t feel like myself.
“I don’t know a lot about my opponent [Devon Mosley]. I know he’s a southpaw just like me That’s pretty much all I know and all I need to know.
“I’ve prepared for this fight just like any other fight…hard work and dedicating myself to my craft. At the end of the day I’ll reap the fruits of my labor.”
SAM “VANILLA GORILLA” CROSSED:
“I don’t know much about my opponent [Damion Reed]. I know he is a tall left-handed guy. I only watched a little video of him. I’ve been sparring a lot of left handers and then we just happened to get a left-handed guy, so it worked out pretty well.
“I’m still a little disappointed about my last performance in D.C., so I am going to come out and put on a show on Friday, May 13.
“Anyone you get in the ring with poses a threat, but at the same time, I am confident in what I have done to prepare. I’ve been sparring guys with 20 pro fights, so, I think I’m good.
“I played football and baseball growing up. Basically, what got me into boxing was that I got picked on when I was younger and smacked around on the basketball court. I always said when I grow up I want to be able to beat up the dudes that picked on me. What’s funny is that a lot of guys that bullied me are now begging me for tickets to my fights.”