Domonique Dolton: "I hope I can make America proud"
If you’re a boxer from Detroit, three things are usually a given: 1) At one time, you worked under the auspicious eye of boxing royalty in that part of the world, namely the late great Emanuel Steward. 2) This in itself means you must have a certain level of ability. 3) Lastly, you’ll be a tough customer having been brought up on the mean streets of Detroit, rated America’s most dangerous city in 2012. Light middleweight Domonique Dolton ticks all three of those boxes. So far, the recently-turned 23-year-old has won all 13 of his bouts with seven inside the distance. He knows all about things being tough but after his first 11 fights, he was on the outside looking in at the boxing world for 16 months. Thankfully, Dolton has now aligned himself with Acquinity Sports, based in Miami. They’ve kept him active putting him in the ring twice at the end of 2012. Now that he’s shed the ring rust, Dolton is ready to break out in the next 12 months.
Anson Wainwright - You returned after a 16-month hiatus. Could you tell us what you have been up to and why you were out of action for so long?
Domonique Dolton - At the time, my old team just couldn’t keep me busy. I didn’t want to be inactive for so long but sometimes you can’t control the situation.
AW - You fought Richard Gutierrez on the undercard of the Joan Guzman-Khabib Allakhverdiev fight. Could you tell us about fight?
DD – Yeah, Richard was a tough fighter. I had sparred him several times, so we knew each other quite a bit but I didn’t show him everything in sparring. I never do. I fought smart, used my jab, put combos together and got my win.
AW – Previously, you won a narrow majority decision over Donatas Bondoravas. Could you tell us about that fight and how you look back at it?
DD - Bondoravas was tougher than we all thought and I was very overweight for that bout. I ate grapes for three days and really drained myself to make weight that day. I look back and learn from all my fights. I’m a student of the game.
AW – Previously, you were a member of Emanuel Steward’s Kronk team in Detroit. Could you tell us about that and the relationship you had?
DD - Emanuel was a special man to a lot of upcoming prospects out of Detroit. Even though I moved on, I am truly grateful and blessed to have learned from one of the best. I will never forget him and I pray to God he can rest in peace.
AW – Obviously, things have moved on and you are now in Florida. How did that come about?
DD - I was out of contract and didn’t have a promoter. I knew I was talented and wanted to be world champ. I had a friend in Miami who was doing well with his promoter, [Henry] Rivalta, and I remembered him. He ran The Heavyweight Factory back in the days and I reached out to him and expressed I wanted to be part of their team. These guys know how to treat a fighter.
AW - Could you tell us about the new team including your manager, trainer and promoter?
DD - My promoter, Henry Rivalta, has really believed in me and I have total faith in his decisions for my future. My advisor, Gary Jonas, CEO of Acquinity Sports, always has my ear. I listen to his advice and it works. My trainer and manager, Herman Caicedo, is the best. He spends a lot of time with our whole team and makes time for all of us. “Irish” Micky Ward also teaches me a lot and is a cool dude to be around. Everyone loves this guy.
AW - What has your training been like?
DD - My training consists of waking up early and my team runs 10 miles. At first, I thought these guys are crazy but now I feel so good and so strong. After our run, we rest up, shower and go back to the gym for action. Herman is the best pad work I ever had. Micky teaches me to rip that body. I’m gonna be the only American to rip the body like a Mexican. After the gym, we do spinning or yoga, good for the legs and the mind. On alternate days, we strength and condition at Elite U [Fitness]. They bust our ass, period! But this is the next level of training. I threw up for two weeks straight when I got here and now I laugh when I see the new guy throwing up who thought he was in shape as I did. Acquinity Sports breeds monsters. Every man here is in condition. Every man.
AW - What were your younger days like growing up in Detroit?
DD - Growing up in Detroit was tough, a lot of kids running the streets including me. Drugs flowing on many corners, stick-up kids looking for a score. You name it; I saw it but I thank God for my mom and dad. They always instilled boxing in me because they wanted me to be the best I could be and not lose it to the mean streets of Detroit where so many great fighters fade because of no guidance. I’m glad I was raised there because it made me tougher than nails and now in Miami, I’m working on perfecting my skills. Boy, do I feel like totally different fighter now than before.
AW - How did you first become interested in boxing?
DD - I was seven when I walked into Kronk. Little by little, I fell in love and now, boxing is my baby. I love it and am true to the sport. “3D” means determination, discipline and dedication. Those three things I live by. After I become champ, one day I will call you and tell you my name is Domonique “The Dominator” Dolton. How you like that?
AW - What was your amateur career like?
DD - My amateur career was a good one. I won many nationals and competed against everyone who was someone. I punched from all angles and got the name “3D.” It helped me so much then to be where I am now.
AW - Tell us a little about yourself and what you like to do away from boxing.
DD - Away from boxing, I love to play basketball. I’m a basketball junkie and it also keeps me fit. When I dunked a ball viciously in front of my teammates, they were like, “Do it again, ‘3D.’” I might try to jump over a fighter one day in the ring (laughs). Also talking with my family back home, my little sister, my moms and pops, my godmother and everyone else I love. Music is also a big part of me and I enjoy listening to my old-school R&B jams. I’m really a very mature 23-year-old.
AW - In closing, do you have a message upon your return to boxing?
DD - My message is I’m coming. I want to be the best and I want to be the next great American champion. Follow in the footsteps of the great but leave my own mark. I’m destined for this, man. It’s my dream since I was a baby. I’m humble but confident in my abilities. I hope I can make America proud. Here I come; “3D” is in the house.
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