Middleweight Donatas Bondorovas (16-3-1, 5 KOs) says he has had a perfect training camp in preparation for his rematch with Indiana’s “King” David Thomas (10-3-2, 8 KOs). He’s going to need it. The pair will meet for the second time in the main event of promoter Bobby Hitz’s “Fight Night at the Horseshoe” event, this Friday, February 15, at the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, Indiana. In their first encounter, Bondorovas survived a cut, multiple injuries and got off the floor from a hard knockdown before storming back to win via a come-from-behind (and some would say early) stoppage in the second round.
Born in Kaunas City, Lithuania, Bondorovas came to the United States three years ago and settled in Chicago, where he is trained by well-known Windy City boxing figure Sam Colonna at the Sam Colonna Boxing Gym.
You had a tough fight with Thomas last time. What’s going to be different this time?
I had an unsuccessful first round because I quickly suffered a shoulder injury and a hand injury, and then got cut over my nose… and then I got knocked down! Wow. It was like everything was against me. But I am a warrior and way too competitive. I can’t quit. So I took all my fighting spirit and went into the second round like a raging bull and finished the guy with the other hand. That was drama!
When Bobby Hitz told me he wanted to fight on February 15, I was informed that Thomas wanted a rematch. I was surprised, because I won that fight by TKO. But later, I came to find out they want it because they think the fight was stopped too early.
The truth is that the job of a ring referee is to take responsibility of athletes’ health. This is a sport, not gladiator combat! My opponent was out on his feet. I saw his eyes were rolled back and maybe another blow could have been tragic. So, I think the referee acted adequately. You can risk your own life, but not somebody else’s!
When I heard this, I said ‘ok, they want a rematch? Alright let’s do it again and nothing will be different this time, except I hope I will not be injured.’
Tell me about your amateur career. How many fights did you have? Did you win many titles? What were they?
As an amateur, my record was about 190-30. I was a long-time member of the Lithuanian National Amateur Boxing Team and a five-time national amateur boxing champion. I was also the European Union Amateur Boxing Championships bronze medal winner, the World Military Boxing Championships bronze medal winner and the two-time Military Olympics bronze medal winner. I also won several international amateurs boxing tournaments.
Are you a full-time boxer or do you work a job? What do you do if you do?
I do some personal training and a sometimes drive a limo, because to live only from boxing at this level it is impossible. I don’t have any sponsors yet, so I have to do something else for a living and it is really hard.
Describe your style of fighting.
I have power and determination. I think in the ring and have excellent timing because of my many years of experience. Actually I think my style is universal. It depends what kind of style my opponent has and then I am able to choose the best strategy to fight him.
Are you married? Have children?
I am still single and not ready yet for a family, because it is not play. Family is a holy affair. It is a very responsible thing and you need to be prepared financially and morally, spiritually and take it very seriously. You have to feel it from inside when it is time!
Several Chicagoland favorites are scheduled to appear in supporting bouts including Chicago’s red-hot undefeated Dimar “Strongman” Ortuz (7-0, 5 KOs), who will go six rounds in the cruiserweight division against Memphis southpaw Grover Young (7-8-1, 4 KOs).
Also returning for a six-rounder is wildly popular Chicago super middleweight prospect Mike “Hollywood” Jimenez (8-0, 5 KOs), who is fresh off his very impressive stoppage of former world title challenger Antwun Echols last November at the Horseshoe. Jimenez will fight local veteran Michael Walker (19-17-3, 12 KOs).
In other matches, Hammond, Indiana’s own heavyweight powerhouse David Martin III (6-0-1, 5 KOs) is coming back for a six-rounder against Chicago tough guy Felix Abner (3-2, 2 KOs); and 21-year-old Rockford, Illinois, lightweight Anthony Linenfelser (3-3, 3 KOs) will bring his brand of excitement to bear against explosive Chicago native Russell “Rocky” Fiore (6-2-1, 6 KOs) in a four-rounder.
Popular locals also featured in four-round fights will be junior welterweight Genaro Mendez (5-1-1, 3 KOs); pro super flyweight and former National Jr. Olympic Champion Johnny “WiteBoi” Determan (5-0, 4 KOs) from Nebraska, as well as the other heavily decorated Chicago-based amateur he is on a collision course with: 21-year-old super flyweight prospect Adan Ortiz (5-0, 4 KOs); welterweight “Irish” Jimmy Murphy (1-0, 1 KO) and the second fight of welterweight Nick Ramirez (0-0-1).
All opponents not specified will be announced shortly.