Former WBO lightweight champion “King” Arthur Grigorian (33-1, 22 KOs) will not be fighting Matt Zegan (40-5-1, 21 KOs) on March 6 in Katowice, Poland. The 43-year-old former champion, who held the world title for eight years, has decided to pass on an offer for a rematch against the 33-year-old Zegan, whom he defeated on points in January 2003. “I would have gladly boxed against Matt,” said Grigorian. “I’ve already prepared myself for four weeks. But now my body is giving me a red card. I no longer can get back to my former level of performance. The mind is willing, but the body is not.”
He continued, “I couldn’t improve in training and I worried too much that I could injure myself. I now have a job as a trainer with Universum and I’m responsible for my boxers. I would like to continue to bring my guys into the top positions in the rankings, so I can’t afford to take a break. My focus is 100% on my guys. I’m sorry that I’ve made everyone crazy, but it didn’t work out. Matt, you’re a great boxer! I would have liked to prove that I could beat you again, but we should have done this five years ago.”
Following his highly successful career, which included a world title reign from 1996 to 2004 in the lightweight division, Grigorian is now a full-time trainer for Universum, handling heavyweight sensation Denis Boytsov and the Bedak brothers among others.
Universum VP Dietmar Poszwa commented, “Artur’s ambition is great, but the physical fitness must also be there and at his age that is no longer the case. We’re happy he’s recognized that. I recommended that Artur pass on this fight. He would have done it, but it would be a great loss if he would drop out as a trainer since his boxers wouldn’t have been guaranteed such a good preparation.”
Nevertheless, Grigorian will be in Katowice on March 6 as his fighter Alex Kuziemski (17-1, 4 KOs) returns to the ring for the first time since his defeat against Jurgen Brähmer in August 2009. Kuziemski will face Lars Buchholz (11-3, 6 KOs) from Berlin. “I want to come back with an impressive victory,” said Alex.