Andre Dirrell Meets the Press

By Robert Ecksel on May 21, 2015
Andre Dirrell Meets the Press
“James is one hell of a fighter. He has a lot of heart, a lot of spunk, and he wants to win.”

“He feels like he’s an undefeated fighter. I feel like I’m an undefeated fighter. But we both have a lot to prove…”

On Saturday afternoon, May 23, at the Agganis Arena in Boston, Massachusetts, Andre Dirrell (24-1, 16 KOs), from Flint, Michigan, fights James DeGale (20-1, 14 KOs), from Harlesden, London, UK, for the vacant IBF super middleweight title.

In anticipation of the fight, the boxers recently met with the press via teleconference call. Both men are confident. Both men expect to win. Both men take nothing for granted.

“This is going to be a very good fight,” said Dirrell. “He’s a hungry fighter. I’m a hungry fighter. We are both in desperate need or desperate want of a world title. I feel very confident and I’m excited about this match. He feels like he’s an undefeated fighter. I feel like I’m an undefeated fighter. But we both have a lot to prove, man. So we’re going to come to the full effect and I believe it’s going to be a great show.”

Boxing needs a great show. Canelo vs. Kirkland fit the bill. Mayweather vs. Pacquiao did not. But boxing, like Old Man River, just keeps rollin’ along. It also keeps rollin’ with the punches.

Dirrell’s nickname is The Resurrected. That seems highfalutin, except for one small thing. He and his career have, in a very real sense, been resurrected. During the Super Six Super Middleweight Tournament, Dirrell was on his way to a lopsided decision and a shot at the eventual winner Andre Ward, when he slipped and fell onto the wet canvas. His opponent, Arthur Abraham, took his best (or worst) shot and nailed Dirrell with a right to the temple. Dirrell was declared the winner due to the flagrant foul, but headaches and dizziness, neurological symptoms from a concussion, derailed his career for close to two years.

But Andre Dirrell is back.

“I had a major setback,” he said, “but with that I stayed in the game, stayed sharp. I was sharp in my last couple of performances. I’m looking forward to the future and this is the breakout fight. James is one hell of a fighter. He has a lot of heart, a lot of spunk, a lot of energy and he wants to win. If you want to put me in front of a fighter for a world championship fight, then James DeGale is bar none one of the best to do it in front of. So I’m excited about this fight. I think this is probably one of the biggest fights from Premier Boxing Champion that they’ve had and I’m excited to be on that big stage.”

Even though Dirrell has won each of his five fights since the Abraham incident, there are concerns from those for whom concern is part of the equation.

“I look at it all from a mental aspect. As of now, I’m grown tremendously in my mind. I’ve realized how important boxing is to me and what it takes to become world champion. The fight is won in the gym, not on fight night. It’s what you do in the gym, not how hard you put up a fight. I’m feeling the vibe already. I feel I have a lot to prove and I have a different Andre Dirrell to show, one that’s just as sharp, just as fast, just as brave, but just has a bigger mental capacity.”

Dirrell, to his credit, refuses to badmouth his opponent.

“We’re pretty much evenly matched,” he said, “and I like that scenario because I know I’m faster, I know I’m smarter, and I know I’m a better boxer. But I know he’s worked his ass off, man. He has to come over to America just like I went over there to England to try to fight for a world championship. I know what kind of guy I’m going to face. I know DeGale is coming to fight.”

Andre Dirrell vs. James DeGale will be televised live Saturday afternoon courtesy of PBC on NBC, starting at 4:30 PM ET/1:30 PM PT.

Follow us on Twitter@boxing_com to continue the discussion

Dirrell vs. DeGale - May 23 - PBC on NBC

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Andre Dirrell - PBC on NBC

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  1. AKT 02:30pm, 05/24/2015

    Well done Kid Blast! You predicted correctly. I salute you!

    Although, I still think Dirrell is the better, superior boxer but it just wasn’t his night.

  2. AKT 10:52pm, 05/21/2015

    @Kid Blast if DeGale wins, I’ll come here and give a good old fashioned salute. I’d even throw in a couple of words for good measure “O mighty Kid Blast, your knowledge of boxing knows no bounds!” Lol.

  3. Clarence George 06:52pm, 05/21/2015

    I’m going with DeGale, but I can’t decide between a late-round stoppage or a razor-thin win by split or majority decision.

  4. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 06:06pm, 05/21/2015

    On top of that you have at least one writer here on along with others elsewhere downgrading GGG so Goddamned much that they probably just helped to set Froch up for a horrible ass whipping instead of letting the guy just ride off into the sunset with his pride and his ass intact!

  5. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 05:45pm, 05/21/2015

    Sonsona winging that left almost takes Estrella’s head off with a right….crickets here on Someone posts how much he hates Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachman like they’re the fuking problem when we have a Racist,Marxist/Islamist/Psychopath POS in the White House fundamentally destroying our country. Then another chimes in from Down Under with the obligatory antidote to GGG….Hopkins or Ward for Christ’s sake….the nullifiers supreme!

  6. Kid Blast 11:19am, 05/21/2015

    AKT, hahaha. What have you got, bro?

  7. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 08:59am, 05/21/2015

    He was potshotting and sprinting all night long….having a good old time…..but he over did it and was running on fumes in the tenth…..the cave man was starting to rough him up and finally caught him and knocked him down….Larry Cole did his part by fuking that one up too….Abraham pulled that punch after the slip and it didn’t land any damn way…..he was exhausted….he had nothing left….why take a DQ instead of a wide UD unless he knew that he just couldn’t run another round.

  8. AKT 07:45am, 05/21/2015

    That sounds like a wager to me Kid Blast ..  :-). We’ll see.

  9. Kid Blast 07:00am, 05/21/2015

    I have Degale

  10. AKT 05:53am, 05/21/2015

    I have Dirrell by UD. Clear win - No arguments.

    I wish Degale had gone via another route.

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