Felix Sturm Meets the Press

By Robert Ecksel on June 22, 2011
Felix Sturm Meets the Press
"I’m always watching what happens in the United States”

“I think Matthew is a great fighter. He’s strong. He’s fast, tough. He’s a smart guy. I think we all can expect a huge fight, a big fight, an all-action fight…”

In anticipation of Saturday’s fight from the Lanxess Arena in Cologne, Germany, between WBA middleweight champion Felix Sturm (35-2-1, 15 KOs) and top-rated contender Matthew Macklin (28-2, 19 KOs), both fighters met with the press on a telephone conference call. The fight is Sturm’s 10th defense of his title, and while he respects his opponent, he’s confident “Mack the Knife” won’t spoil the party.

“I think Matthew is a great fighter,” said Sturm. “He’s strong. He’s fast, tough. He’s a smart guy. I think we all can expect a huge fight, a big fight, an all-action fight.”

Sturm fought Oscar De la Hoya in 2004. Although he lost the decision, many thought he won the fight, and he hasn’t fought in the U.S. since.

“I would like to come back in the U.S. and to fight there at the MGM Grand or Madison Square Garden,” said Sturm. “It was for me a dream come true to fight Oscar and to fight in the States [and] I think I’m a better fighter than I was seven years ago…This fight has made me world famous, first Germany and then worldwide, all from fighting Oscar De La Hoya, who everyone saw me beat…But I have to concentrate on Saturday’s fight against Macklin. That is what is most important to me and for my teammates…And when I beat Matthew on Saturday, of course, we are planning to come back to the U.S. to fight.”

Sturm used to fight regularly, but slowed down for a couple of years. Now, however, he stepping it up and plans to fight more frequently.

“I feel very comfortable with three fights in a year,” he said. “I’m a fighter who needs activity who needs to fight every four months. I think having a fight every four months keeps me sharp.”

Macklin is a live opponent, there’s no quit in him, so what’s the game plan to defeat Saturday’s challenger?

“I’ll be putting on a lot of pressure from the first round…My jab and my body shots, those will be the key for the success.”

No fighter wants a fight to go to the judges, and Sturm is no different. He said that “hopefully” he’ll KO Macklin, although he expects it “will be a close fight.” But, he said, a knockout “is the best decision for everybody…And we are both good fighters. We can make a lot of pressure. We can fight.”

The hot ticket in the middleweights these days is the WBC/WBO champion Sergio Martinez.

“I would like to fight Martinez,” Sturm insisted, “and show that I can beat the best in the world…but now my focus is on fighting Matthew Macklin, and after this fight, we can talk again about Martinez.

“I’m happy with the situation right now—one of the top fighters in European boxing and one of the biggest names in Germany. But I would like to come back to the U.S. because I had very good experience fighting in the U.S. against Oscar, and it was a huge, huge fight for me. And I would like to do it again. I’m always watching what happens in the United States.”

EpixHD.com will stream the fight live this Saturday at 5:00 PM/ET.

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