Four-division world champion Adrien Broner and hard-hitting contender Adrian Granados went face-to-face Thursday at the final press conference before they enter the ring Saturday, February 18 live from the Cintas Center at Xavier University in Cincinnati.
Also in attendance Thursday and competing in the Showtime televised coverage beginning at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT were WBA Welterweight Champion David Avanesyan and two-time world champion Lamont Peterson, who meet in a 12-round welterweight fight, and light heavyweight contendersMarcus Browne and Thomas Williams Jr., who battle in a 10-round contest.
Here is what the participants had to say Thursday from the Cintas Center:
“I know everyone is used to me coming up here and being boastful. That’s not me anymore. I have a lot of respect for Adrian Granados and he’s a great fighter.
“A businessman that can fight. That’s what I am nowadays. I’m not a sh*t talker anymore. I’m a businessman that knows how to fight.
“My best knockouts come when I don’t go for the knockout. I look at my last fight and think to myself that it was terrible because I was looking for the knockout. I watch the Khabib fight, I didn’t look for the knockout and it came. That’s when the biggest knockouts come. I just want to go in there and put on a great performance for the hometown crowd.
“I just want to put on a great performance for everyone in Cincinnati. It’s going to be a special atmosphere and I want to give them their money’s worth.
“I’ve had an amazing training camp and I feel great right now. I’m very thankful to my team who has helped me get to this point in my career.”
“I’m excite for this weekend. I’m ready to go. I’ve been through a lot but we’re ready. I’m not here to lay down. I’m here to take home a victory for Chicago and for my people.
“Saturday I’m expecting a great fight. It is going to be a kill or be killed-type of fight. It is going to be a very exciting night for all of us.
“People that think I’m an underdog don’t know me. They don’t know the tricks I have up my sleeve. I plan on thriving in the underdog position.
“I’ve watched Adrien fight live on TV and in the arena many times. Spending eight weeks with him [in camp], I think I know him more than most people.
“I plan on winning in a stoppage or a unanimous decision. No matter what I’m leaving with a victory.”
“It’s going to be a great fight. We have a lot of mutual respect. Mixed with my style, I know it’s going to be a good fight. I hope everyone is ready for a great show.”
“I’m very happy to have this fight in America. This is my second time fighting in the U.S. and I’m looking forward to keeping my belt after fighting Lamont Peterson on Saturday.
“I am excited to be fighting on a show like this. I hope that if I can get another win I can get even bigger fights and prove that I’m the best.
“I’m ready for this challenge. I know Lamont Peterson is looking to make this a great fight and I hope he brings it in the ring on Saturday.”
“I had a great camp. I’m thankful to my team for getting me ready for this one. We got some great sparring that has me ready for this fight.
“I’m ready to take care of business on Saturday night. I’m looking forward to it and I hope everyone enjoyed it.
“We always want to be in good condition. Avanesyan switches from southpaw to orthodox a lot, which is something we had to be prepared for. We’ve sparred with guys from both sides and gotten a lot of good rounds there.
“He’s a strong fighter too. You know a Russian fighter is going to come in with power. We made sure I’ll be able to match him anytime the fight gets rough. I’ll be ready for anything.
“I think my speed will give him trouble. He’s been able to handle everything in the past, but that doesn’t mean I won’t have advantages. I’m the more experienced fighter and I have the skills to get the win.
“I feel like I’m going to get him out of there. I’m predicting a late stoppage.”
“Top Dog can say what he wants to say. On Saturday night we’ll be Dog Whisperers. Make sure you tune-in for this one.
“I’ve had a great training camp and I feel ready to get in the ring. Saturday night can’t come soon enough for me.
“I’m thankful to have this opportunity to fight on a great card like this. I’ve seen guys like Adrien and Lamont in the ring for a lot of years and I’m proud to be up here with them.”
THOMAS WILLIAMS JR.
“I’m feeling great. It was an awesome camp. Everyone should buy a ticket or watch it on TV. Get there early and don’t miss my fight.
“Marcus is a boxer and I know he’s going to try to kick and scratch every now and then. If you let him get comfortable, he’s going to get in a zone. My job is to make him uncomfortable and make him do the things that I want him to do.
“Everybody who knows me, knows what I bring to the table. When I get in the ring you know what’s coming. Saturday night, ‘Top Dog’ will reign.”
RAVONE LITTLEJOHN, About Billions Promotions
“It’s finally fight time. Tickets begin at $30 for this great card. We’re excited to be promoting big events in Adrien’s hometown and the great boxing fans here.
“Adrian Granados is a guy who we’ve had in camp with Adrien before. We know what he’s capable of and how hard he works. Everyone knows he’s coming to bring it.
“Adrien has done a lot in this sport and he has a lot more left to do. I know he’s going to do it, and it starts Saturday night.
“Both guys are going to get in that ring and give it their best. Adrien Broner will be victorious, but we like the challenge.”
LEONARD ELLERBE, CEO of Mayweather Promotions
“We’re very excited to be here in this wonderful city. It’s a great boxing town with a history of very good fighters from this area. Saturday night is an outstanding show from top to bottom.
“Both of the Adrien/Adrian’s know each other very well. You want to watch Adrien Broner Saturday night. He’s going to put on a phenomenal performance that I can’t wait to see.
“From top to bottom this is an incredibly exciting card and we’re excited to work with About Billions to give boxing fans another great event.”