By Gary “Digital” Williams
Photos: Team Sauerland
On Saturday, February 15, Stevensville, MD middleweight Tony “Mo Better” Jeter will be in a situation that 98 percent of boxers wish they could be in. One fight away from a world title shot.
Unlike most of that two percent that do make it to that point in their careers, Jeter is no hotshot undefeated prospect. At 38 years old, Jeter brings a career that has had its ups and downs. However, recent successes have led Jeter to the point where he will be facing undefeated Patrick Nielsen of Albertslund, Denmark for the vacant WBC Silver Middleweight title on February 15 at the MusikTeatret in Albertslund.
“This is like winning the Powerball for me,” Jeter told Fightnews in an recent interview prior to leaving for Denmark. “So many boxers would love to be in this position. I’m super happy right now.”
“I’ve always been a gym rat,” Jeter added. “I’m 38 years old but I haven’t taken a lot of punishment.”
Almost three years ago, a title bout such as this would have seemed unthinkable for Jeter (16-3-1, 11 KO’s). In December of 2011, Jeter was stopped in the fifth round by journeyman Jose Felix on a card in Arlington, VA and his career seemed to be floundering. Jeter avenged the loss to Felix in February of 2012, winning an eight-round unanimous decision. Jeter then captured the vacant WBC Fecarbox Middleweight title with a fifth-round TKO over Tyrel Brown on September 22, 2012. The next month, Jeter defeated fellow Beltway fan favorite Jimmy Lange by 10-round split decision. After a no-decision against Jimmy LeBlanc in June of 2013, Jeter defended his Fecarbox title with a second-round TKO in a rematch against Brown on August 3 in Millersville, MD.
The five-bout unbeaten streak has placed Jeter at number 14 in the WBC Middleweight rankings — four spots above Nielsen (21-0, 10 KO’s), who is ranked in among the top five middleweights in the world by the three other major governing bodies (WBO #3, IBF #4 and WBA #5).
Jeter has also promoted his own cards, placing himself either in the co-feature bout or the main event. This, Jeter says, sets himself up for a lot of pressure that he will not face on February 15.
“I’m in a no-lose situation,” Jeter said. “When I fight on a show that I promote, there is so much pressure on me [to succeed]. But over there, the pressure will be non-existent. They are probably overlooking me and taking me for granted.”
With a thought toward life after boxing, Jeter added that this bout will help his promotional company gain more notoriety. However, Jeter says, for now, that can wait.
“I’m looking forward to putting on a great show on February 15,” Jeter said. Nielsen will be in trouble if he overlooks me.”