By Francisco Salazar
There are many in the sport of boxing that talk a good talk before a game or a match. To some, it is to psyche themselves up. Others may use it in a way to intimidate their opponents.
Not unbeaten middleweight contender Peter Quillin. If he does talk, it is because he is confident enough that what he says will play out exactly in the ring.
He has done it 27 times as a professional before and thinks that in the most important fight of his career thus far, it will happen again.
Quillin will challenge middleweight world title holder Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam tonight at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY.
The bout will be part of a Golden Boy Promotions card and will be televised on Showtime.
In his last bout on June 2nd, Quillin (27-0, 20 KOs) won a hard-fought 10 round unanimous decision over former super welterweight champion Ronald “Winky” Wright.
After having fought as a professional for seven years and fighting in a venue that is near home in Brooklyn, Quillin has arrived at the pinnacle of his career thus far. Of course, the happy ending will be when he has the world title belt around his waist and his arm raised as the victor.
“I don’t see it playing out any other way,” Quillin told Boxingscene.com over the phone this past week. “I’ve envisioned it in my head while I’m in the gym. I see myself coming through and winning that belt.”
While there are some members in the media and fight fans who think that Quillin has not fought a legit middleweight contender yet or that he does deserve a world title fight yet, Quillin brushes that notion aside.
However, he is thankful for the opportunity that has come his way. While the fight has drawn considerable interest and is one of the more evenly-matched fights on the card, Quillin thinks that the pressure is more on N’Jikam and not on him.
“I don’t think I have anything to prove,” said Quillin, who has mentioned fighters such as Sugar Ray Leonard and Floyd Mayweather that have inspired him. “He says he is going to give me an ass-whooping. When you say that, then you must back up what you say. I’ve backed up everything that I’ve said before in my career.”
As intriguing a personality in and out of the ring, Quillin even has a name for what his attitude has become known as. Quillin names his approach when he trains for a fight as “animal status,” which draws curiosity to what the phrase stands.
“Animal status is how one becomes natural from learning from a lion. The way he stalks a gazelle. The instincts of surviving and the strategies of executing a game plan.”
Quillin understands the magnitude of the event and its significance. Not everyday one gets an opportunity to fight for a world title. Still, with his preparation at the Wild Card Gym, the multiple runs in the hills, and the guidance of trainer Eric Brown, Quillin knows he is more than ready for this opportunity.
He just does not talk it. He believes it. 24 hours from now, instead of him being called just a contender, he rightfully believes he will be called a world champion.
Seeing is believing.