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Chris Algieri: The stakes just get higher and higher

Algieri vs. ArnaoutisInterview by Arvin Nundloll
Photos by Peter Frutkoff

Chris “The Fighting Pride of Huntington” Algieri (18-0, 8 KOs) faces one of the toughest fights of his career against #6 IBF jr welterweight contender the “Tranzformer” Emmanuel Taylor (17-1, 12 KOs) on this week’s ESPN2 Friday Night Fights. Fighting in his hometown at the Paramount Theater, Algieri took time out of his training to discuss with FightNews his career and future, and the showdown with Taylor.

On training back and forth from Los Angeles to Las Vegas to the East Coast:

I’ve been doing it for a couple of years now, you kind of get used to it. I’m really a student of everything I do. I keep good notes and write everything down during training camp, from camp to camp so I can compare and see what works well. It’s helped me to adapt faster and learn more about how to make smooth transitions from one place to another and be ready on fight night.

Algieri-Arnaoutis 5On being a qualified nutrionist:

I learned at young age that what I ate directly impacted how I perform. I’ve always been kind of a science brain and wanted to know why.

I was very interested in nutrition and healthcare, so it was natural for me to study that in school and thought it’d be a good idea to get a master’s degree in nutrition and it worked out well. It’s been shaping and moving my career the way that it has for the past decade or so and I think I’m getting better all the time and part of it is because of my knowledge of training and nutrition.

There’s life after boxing, I do this because I love it. I don’t have to do this, I don’t have to fight. I have a passion for the sport and I’m lucky enough that I get to compete at the highest level in the sport that I love, so I’m going to do it while I can. I’m still young, my body is still responding the right way and we’re getting better all the time in the ring.

In facing his toughest opponent so far, #6 IBF jr welterweight contender Emmanuel Taylor:

Recently, every fight has been the biggest fight of my career, especially recently as they’ve gotten bigger and bigger.

The more and more wins you have, the longer you have that 0, the stakes just get higher and higher, each fight from bout to bout, it doesn’t matter who you’re fighting.

That’s kind of where I’ve been for the past couple of fights so this is kind of home for me right now. I understand that the pressure is on and I’m the kind of guy that steps up in those kind of situation. The better my opponents are, the better I fight.

Algieri-Arnaoutis 3You got two hungry guys looking for the same thing, we’re both looking to move up and it’s a great opportunity for both of us. It’s going to come down to skills and smarts in there.

Algieri on his phenomenal hometown support:

I appreciate the support, it’s great to have such a following and people staying with my career but on fight night they’re not in the ring with me, it’s just myself and my opponent and I really just block all that out and handle business and stay focused on the task at hand.

My job is to execute, the way I look at is I don’t care how hard you hit, if you don’t land it doesn’t matter what kind of power you have. So the point is to not take unnecessary punches. Hit and don’t be hit.

What the future holds for Algieri:

I plan on being a world champion, it’s as simple as that. Right now I’m focused on February 14th, Emmanuel Taylor, and in the not too distant future I believe that I will be a world champion and that is the goal.

On fighting every two months:

If it was up to me, I’d be fighting every six weeks throughout the year. I’ve been this way since I was a child, I get focused on things and see it through.

Spending time in Los Angeles, sparring and training:

I’ve been spending much of 2012 there, sparring with guys like Brandon Rios and Marcus Maidana.

A lot of the west coast guys like training. They train throughout the whole year whether they have a fight or not. I’m sure some of the east coast guys train like that and in and out of the gym, take time off but there’s talent across the board. The east coast guys have their style, the west coast guys have their style. I’ve even noticed differences between California and Las Vegas fighters.

Algieri-Arnaoutis 6Sparring with world champions:

The biggest thing that helps with guys like that is knowing that I belong in the ring with them. You don’t know you are talented until you test yourself and I’ve had the chance to spar with world champions, pay-per-view stars so when you’re in there and you’re working with those guys on a day to day, you’re pushing each other and you really realize that you belong in there as well and that helps up your game mentally and psychologically.

Algieri’s closing words:

Check in on ESPN Friday Night Fights! It’s two hungry guys who are looking to make a big name for themselves and some big moves!

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Chris Algieri will challenge top contender Emanuel Taylor in the main event of Friday’s Star Boxing’s “Rockin’ Fights 12″ card and this week’s ESPN2 Friday Night Fights at The Paramount Theater in Huntington, New York.

“Rockin’ Fights 12″ is presented by Joe DeGuardia of Star Boxing. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster (www.Ticketmaster.com, 800.745.3000) or by calling Star Boxing at (718.823.2000)or at www.StarBoxing.com and through The Paramount box office (631.673.7300). Doors open at 7p and the first bell is at 7:30 p.m.




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