It has been a while since Tony Harrison has been in the ring and one year longer than that since his last victory.
None of that changes how he will approach his upcoming fight with Bryant Perrella, or any fighter after that.
“Each fight is a reset for me. I enter the ring 0-0,” Harrison told BoxingScene.com ahead of his ring return this weekend. “I don’t think about what I had before, I don’t think about what fights are ahead.
“I just think about the other guy in that ring and that each fight is a must-win. Whatever’s next comes next.”
Nothing has come next for Harrison (28-3, 21KOs)—at least, not in the ring—since a heartbreaking 11th round stoppage loss to Jermell Charlo in their entertaining Dec. 2019 rematch. The bout took place exactly 52 weeks after Harrison’s 12-round unanimous decision win over Charlo to claim the WBC junior middleweight title. An injury suffered during training camp delayed their rematch by six months, with the 30-year-old Detroit native failing to make a successful title defense in conceding the belt back to Charlo.
Both fights with Charlo aired live on Fox, as will Harrison’s clash with Perrella (17-3, 14KOs) this Saturday live from Shrine Auditorium & Expo in Los Angeles.
A win this weekend will keep Harrison on path for a shot at a second title reign in a division where he remains in a good company. The majority of the top junior middleweights in the sport fight under adviser Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) banner, which is currently in control of all four major titles. Charlo owns the lineal/WBC/WBA/IBF crowns while Brian Castaño has the WBO belt.
Whether or not a fight like that is in Harrison’s future depends on two things—how well he performs on Saturday, along with how he fits into the overall plan of those guiding his career.
“Everything just depends on how I feel,” notes Harrison. “If we feel good after this fight, Al could call and say we’re fighting for the title next.
“If I’m a little slow, if they think I look a little faded, then they’re gonna put me in another fight where I can get my shit back together.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox