Photos: Bob Barton
Tomorrow night former undisputed middleweight champion Jermain “Bad Intentions” Taylor (30-4-1, 18KOs) will step back into the ring and continue on his comeback trail as he takes on Raul Munoz (21-15-1, 16KOs) in a 10-round middleweight bout, highlights of which will be aired on ShoBox.
“I feel great. Physically and mentally I feel I am on the top of my game,” said Taylor. “I am ready to go out there and make a statement. I want to show the world that I am ready for the best that the middleweight division has to offer. I fully expect to be fighting for a world title belt sometime early next year.”
The bout on Friday will be Taylor’s third consecutive fight on Showtime since returning to the ring in December of last year. Taylor went on a two-year hiatus from the ring following his early departure from the coveted Super Six Tournament in the super middleweight division. Taylor has since moved back down in weight to where he ruled as the undefeated middleweight champion of the world from 2005-when he ended Bernard Hopkins’ record-setting reign-to 2007. In Taylor’s most recent outing in April, he survived a ninth-round knockdown in a ten round unanimous decision over Caleb Truax. Taylor is hoping to work his way into another title shot in 2013.
“In order for Jermain to return to championship form he has to stay busy,” said promoter Lou DiBella, who has promoted Taylor from his first professional bout. “Skills need to be rediscovered and confidence needs to be built. An active, prepared and confident Jermain Taylor can still be a force to be reckoned with at the highest level of the middleweight division.”
“It took us about five years to get our first crack at the world title so I knew once we returned that it was going to take us some time to get Jermain back to where he was when he beat Hopkins,” said trainer Patrick Burns. “I am extremely happy though where Jermain is right now. Physically he has been there for some time now, but more important was his mental aspect. He needed to get back to where he was mentally and to get that confidence back, and I can assure you that it is there. That is what excites me the most about Jermain right now. He has his confidence back and knows that he has the ability to once again be the best middleweight in the world.”
The event is promoted by DiBella Entertainment and Rumble Time Promotions in association with Gary Shaw Productions and Universal Promotions. Tickets are priced at $100, $75 and $40, and can be purchased through the Ameristar Casino or by calling (314) 267-2204. Doors open at 5:30PM with the first bout scheduled for 6:00PM.