Note well: At the show on Friday evening, undefeated light heavyweight contender Mike Lee will be joining the regular broadcast team as a color analyst. He’ll be joined by blow-by-blow man Alan Massengale and color analysts Steve Kim and Patrick Ortiz live at 8 p.m. PT/11 p.m. ET/ when Greg Cohen Promotions and Ringside Ticket Inc. (in association with David Schuster’s Winner Take All Productions) presents this nationally televised event, headlined by the WBA #4- and WBO #7-rated middleweight and current WBO NABO and WBA NABA Middleweight Champion, Rob “Bravo” Brant (20-0, 13 KOs) of Saint Paul, Minnesota, in his 10-round battle against Cleveland’s Chris “The Irish Ghost” Fitzpatrick (15-4, 6 KOs).
Here are some quotes from our headliners:
Rob Brant: “I’ve been in the position where I’m supposed to win, especially in the amateurs, and that’s where things always go wrong for me. I’d be fighting against a country I’ve never heard of, knowing I’d be fighting Germany the next day and I would be totally looking past the guy I’m facing. Next thing you know, I’d lose. I’ve stopped looking past guys.
“With a record of 15-4, Chris Fitzpatrick is a good fighter. Good, not phenomenal fighter. If you’re sleeping though and just thinking you’re going to automatically beat this guy down, he’ll beat you. He’s not a huge puncher, but he throws volume. He’ll want to be on the inside and throw combinations. I need to take him seriously. I know I’m on a short list to face Billy Joe Saunders, (the WBO Middleweight Champion) but this is boxing. So until both names are on a contract, it’s too good to be true. I’ll be ready to take that challenge when it comes. I’m definitely looking for a big fight in the near future. I need to start taking on upper-level competition. I’ve been preparing all my life and now is the time to make it happen.”
Chris Fitzpatrick: “I’m going to win. I’m going to go in there and fight my heart out and hopefully come out with the W. I know Brant is explosive and he’s turning his punches over a lot more. I’m going to try to move around him and make it a physical fight. That’s my kind of fight. My training went very well. Every camp has its rough moments, but for the most part, it went well. A victory over Brant would be great for my career, to revive it. After being off for three years, I lost my last fight. But this win will put me right back on track.”
In an interview with Joe O’Neill of Irish-Boxing.com, the Irish Ghost explained his recent three-year layoff from boxing. It was due to family reasons, and he explained “the layoff was necessary after our son was diagnosed with Autism. Due to the severity of his case, my wife and I were unable to maintain that type of consistency in our lives. The constant back and forth from home to training camp became extremely stressful for our little boy. I felt the need to put boxing aside for the time being, until we were all ready to make this happen. We knew the only way would be to train from home and that we were on our own. After awhile my wife and I were able to make the adjustments and start training ourselves. At present, I have a great support system that believes in me and I’m more motivated than ever to prove them right and prove the doubters wrong.”
The promoter of this show, Greg Cohen Promotions, is well-respected for staging world-class pro boxing events and promoting elite fighters throughout the world. Founder and CEO Greg Cohen has been involved in boxing in various capacities since the late 1980s, honing his craft and establishing himself as a shrewd international businessman. Distinguished for his ability to spot and develop raw talent, Cohen first made promotional headlines for his guidance of former WBA Junior Middleweight Champ Austin Trout, who Cohen helped go from an unknown New Mexico prospect to an elite pay-per-view superstar.
The Pechanga Resort & Casino is located at 45000 Pechanga Parkway in Temecula, Calif. On fight night, doors open at 6 p.m. and the action starts at 7 p.m. All bouts subject to change. Tickets for CBS Sports Network Championship Boxing are priced at $85, $65 and $50 and are available at www.pechanga.com or by calling the Pechanga Box Office: (877) 711-2946.