Photos: Team Briggs
The last U.S. heavyweight champion of the world, Shannon Briggs (54-6-1, 48 KOs) takes on former world ranked heavyweight Raphael Zumbano Love (34-7-1, 27 KOs) of Brazil. The bout is a twelve round featured attraction with an NABA heavyweight title at stake. Site of the bout will be Remington Park in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma with HD Boxing promoting.
Knowing the high stakes for this bout, Briggs’ relocated his training camp to an oceanfront property in Hollywood, Florida, where he has put in an intense daily running regiment on the beach and hours of endurance training swimming in the ocean. Fightnews caught up with Briggs just days away from his next fight.
You have done so many different training methods for this fight like cycling, swimming, numerous gym drills, and even relocated to the beach. Why so many changes?
I have been a professional boxer since 1992. I needed badly to get out of the same old training routines. These different training methods have me looking forward to my workouts every day.
A lot of your popularity worldwide stems from you being down to earth and being very approachable. This was very evident in your recent trip to Germany for the Wladimir Klitschko-Alex Leapai fight you were mobbed by fans even though you were not even fighting. Where others change with success how have you remained the same?
Its just never crossed my mind to be any different. I was homeless as a child for period of time and that’s about as bad as it gets in life. When I look at where my life is now with a family and our own home I’m personally amazed. I never been the type to be stuck up or think I’m better than somebody. Being like that has never been me and never will. Boxing really changed my life so fast. I mean one moment I’m an amateur competing with major amateur stars, then I’m a young pro with my picture and articles about me in major New York newspapers, then I’m in major heavyweight fights against future hall of famers, and then winning the most coveted prize in boxing, the heavyweight championship of the world. When I was growing up I remember how big of a deal it was for me to meet a professional athlete. If me shaking hands, signing autographs, or taking a picture can touch the life of a person, I’m all for it.
What is your take on your opponent for this fight?
From the videos I have seen on him you can immediately tell that he is very game. He for sure sees this as his big opportunity. I’m physically and mentally ready for twelve rounds. I’m taking him very seriously. He was world ranked not too long ago. I dont look past anybody. This is a must win for me and I have put in the work and preparation accordingly.
Some have compared your latest comeback to that of George Foreman’s from the mid 80’s. How do you see the comparison of the two comebacks?
George who I fought and defeated actually was younger than I am now when he started his comeback at 36. I am 42 but I believe I’m in much better physical condition than he was when he started his comeback. The closest I have been in my career to my current conditioning was in my wins over former world champions Foreman and Ray Mercer who I knocked out. I’m actually stronger now both physically and mentally.
Why is it now at this stage of your career that your focus seems stronger than it has ever been?
My biggest issue which started early in my career was I always had one foot in boxing and the other in business. My first manager when I turned pro worked on Wall Street and I learned a lot about the business world real quick. From where I started in life to what I have achieved thus far is like a movie or book to me. However, The story on me in boxing is not finished. Stay tuned…