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Feature Story

Broner ready to show he belongs with the elites

By Anthony Springer Jr.

Photo: Pat Lovell - Hoganphotos/Golden Boy

After all the turkey and dressing, undefeated junior lightweight Adrien Broner hopes to have something else to be thankful for. In front of his home town crowd in Cincinnati, Ohio, Broner faces Vicente Martin Rodriguez for the vacant WBO Junior Lightweight title at the US Bank Arena. Rodriguez is relatively unknown, but Broner insists he’s not taking the Argentine pugilist lightly. “He didn’t just make up that record,” Broner said of the 34-2-1 mark of his opponent. “His record speaks for itself. He didn’t just get that record fighting anybody.”

With 21 victories under his belt, Broner is no slouch himself. Fans getting a first glimpse of the Ohio fighter during his last fight didn’t have long to make much of an assessment. In a scheduled ten round affair, Broner needed just 2:58 to knock out Jason Litzau.

“The last show on HBO, it didn’t last long,” he said of the knockout. People asked, ‘Why didn’t you make it last long or take him out a little bit later?’ You don’t get paid for overtime.”

Broner makes no promises about stretching out Saturday’s bout, insisting that like the Litzau fight, it might be a short night.

“You should have your snacks ready; this fight could end at anytime. I’m trying to be a world champion. This is just the beginning.”

Fighting on a big stage can be enough to make certain fighters nervous. Fighting on a big stage, for a title, in one’s hometown is another matter entirely. In addition, Broner’s father has been selling tons of tickets to his son’s biggest hometown fight to date.

Is that enough to make Broner jittery? Hardly.

“Saturday is when it’s time to show out. We’re going to have a lot of fun. We’re going to make it happen.”

Broner spoke with a lot of confidence on yesterday’s media conference call, but kept his responses short and concise. The time for talking is over, he’s ready to speak volumes with his fists and continue building a legacy. And that means “The Problem” will be a problem for any fighter in his path.

“There are good boxers and there are elite boxers,”he stated. “I consider myself an elite boxer.”

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