By Matt Richardson
After another dominant, exciting performance by Adrien Broner on Saturday night at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey perhaps the most important thing to remember was reiterated by the (still) unbeaten (new) WBC lightweight champion at the post-fight press conference.
“This has just begun,” stated the 23-year-old Broner (25-0, 21 KOs) minutes after stopping Antonio DeMarco (28-3-1, 21 KOs) in seven lopsided rounds to earn the belt. I’m elite,” Broner said. “I’m an elite fighter who can make a good fighter look like an amateur and that’s what I’ve done tonight. I came into the fight looking for a war because I know DeMarco is a warrior.”
DeMarco (who actually won the first round on all three judges’ scorecards) was gracious in defeat. “As we know how to win, we know how to lose,” he said. “He’s a great fighter and tonight was his night,” said an emotional DeMarco. “It doesn’t end here. I want to show my daughter that dreams do come true. This was a great experience inside of boxing for me. Without a doubt, he’s a very complete fighter.”
That seemed to be the consensus by almost everyone in attendance at the presser.
“Broner, to me, is Floyd Mayweather, Hopkins, myself – you can name them all – all wrapped into one,” said Broner promoter Oscar de la Hoya. “Broner is a special fighter and he showed it tonight.” DeMarco promoter Gary Shaw concurred.
“I will call him the next Floyd Mayweather,” Shaw said. “In my mind, you have the next Floyd Mayweather of boxing.”
“It’s the Adrian Broner, Mr. HBO show,” Broner summed up. “I’m right back in the gym on Monday. I don’t say that I looked too good. I looked 10 good. I got the God-given talent and I put in the type of work you don’t see a normal guy put in. I don’t lose. I don’t even like losing weight.”
At 23 years old and with titles in two divisions under his belt already, the next challenges could come at the junior welterweight division. With his skill level, however, it’s unlikely Broner will lose in the ring or on the scales anytime soon.
BANKS BUSTS MITCHELL
So much for that.
Those four words seemed to be the consensus after the Broner-DeMarco co-feature concluded in less than two rounds following heavyweight Jonathan Banks’ destruction of hyped prospect Seth Mitchell. Going into the bout, Golden Boy was pushing the unbeaten Mitchell as the next best (American) thing in boxing’s former golden division.
Afterwards…not so much.
“I got a little reckless in the second round,” Mitchell (25-1-1, 19 KOs) said. “I saw how effective I was in the first round and I rushed it a bit. Mentally, I’m fine. I just want to get back to the drawing board.”
“I take my hat off to Seth Mitchell,” Banks (29-1-1, 19 KOs) said. “It’s a learning experience. Tonight was a very good night. I’m a competitor. I look forward to any sort of competition.”
Banks was in a rare position that wound up being the basis behind his most impressive and inspiring performance to date. His long-time trainer, Emanuel Steward, had passed away late last month leaving Banks without a trainer for himself or for Steward’s other big client, heavyweight champ Wladimir Klitschko. So Banks picked up the mantle for both – training Klitschko to a victory last weekend before scoring his own big win against Mitchell on Saturday night.
“Emanuel was all in my ear and all in my head,” Banks said. “He was with me all the time.”
Banks didn’t completely dismiss a potential fight against his friend and client. “I never took a plate of food off the table,” he stated about potentially fighting a Klitschko. It’s more likely, however, that he’ll look to avenge his only career defeat by trying to take on Tomasz Adamek (assuming the latter beats Steve Cunningham in a few weeks).
Despite a years-long feud with rival promoter Top Rank, de la Hoya alleged all fights for Broner are on the table. “We want to make the best fights happen,” the promoter said. “That’s it. Just come knocking on our door.” De la Hoya also said a fight with WBO lightweight title-holder Ricky Burns is also “very possible.” But Broner didn’t seem fazed, stating “Burns will get burned.”
Golden Boy promised to donate money to the Boys and Girls Club of Atlantic City for every knockout scored on the card as the region continues to recover from Hurricane Sandy. $14,764.00 was raised with the same amount matched by Caesars Palace and also matched by de la Hoya for a total of $44,292.00
There were 4,200 fans in attendance, according to de la Hoya. 3,800 of those tickets were actually sold, however.
E-mail the author at BoxingWriter@AOL.com or follow him on Twitter @MRichardson713