Story & photos by John DiSanto – PhillyBoxingHistory.com
With a little more than two weeks remaining before his 10-round nationally televised main event with Amir “Hardcore” Mansour, 20-0, 15 KOs, heavyweight Steve “USS” Cunningham, 26-6, 12 KOs, held an open media workout today at the Rock Ministries Gym in the Kensington section of Philadelphia.
Cunningham and Mansour will clash at North Philly’s Liacouras Center on Friday, April 4th, in a fight for Mansour’s USBA title that will be broadcast by NBC Sports Network.
Also participating in the workout were Cunningham’s stablemate, Khalib “Bigfoot” Whitmore, 5-0, 4 KOs, who has a spot on the undercard of the anticipated April 4th card, and the trainer of both fighters, Brother Naazim Richardson.
Steve Cunningham: “This is a special fight for me because Mansour is the powerhouse and they are calling him the next Mike Tyson. He has the USBA title and the fight is in Philly. So great, let’s go. All the negative things being said about me just fuel me up. These things fuel me in camp. Almost every fight in my career, even as a champion, has been about showing these people that I’m supposed to be here.”
Brother Naazim Richardson: “Mansour is an athlete. What is most impressive about Mansour is that he is a guy who, with very little, has gotten done what he has. That makes him special. So we have to take him seriously. For Mansour and his coaches, this is the biggest fight they’ve ever been a part of. So I understand that. But for us, this is a job we need to do. People aren’t going to tell him to his face, but people have written Cunningham off. Well, they’re supposed to think like that. It’s Cunningham’s job to change their opinion. And that’s the task we are up for.”
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