Now this Friday at the UIC Pavilion, Granados is finally getting his shot at national exposure when he faces former IBF welterweight titlist Kermit Cintron on ESPN2’s “Friday Night Fights.”
“It’s a great opportunity for me,” Granados said. “I was surprised that I got the fight. I remember the days when I was just a fan of boxing and used to watch [Cintron] fight. I’ve got family in other parts of the country that can finally tune in to see me.”
The match-up against Cintron was made when the original co-headliner, Donovan George against David Lopez, was bumped to the main event. The move allowed Granados to share a slot in the co-main event.
With that opportunity comes significant challenges for Granados to overcome. While Cintron hasn’t fought in 16 months, Granados, 5’9”, is two inches shorter than Cintron. More importantly, Granados has fought his last five fights at or close to 140 pounds while Cintron has fought his last seven fights at 154 pounds.
“I’ve fought fighters that are taller than me and [have] longer reach, so we definitely work on different things to get past his height,” Granados said. “We’re going to be 110% prepared for the fight.
“[Cintron]’s definitely the bigger man but I do feel strong enough to get up to 147,” he added. “I’ve been working on strength and conditioning, so hopefully, that won’t be a problem. I’m going to be conscious of his power.”
This will be Granados’ second fight at welterweight. His previous effort resulted in a draw against Lanardo Tyner, a fight in which Granados believed he got a bad decision. Granados said he was not sure if he would stay at 147 after the Cintron fight.
“I feel like I can fluctuate,” Granados said. “I know my body really well, so I feel confident I can handle 147. I do plan moving down after but this is a great opportunity. I wasn’t going to pass this up.”
Granados’ promoter, Dominic Pesoli of 8 Count Productions, said this is the right fight for Granados despite the risk involved. “Adrian has proved that he has the talent and the heart to do very well in this fight,” Pesoli said. “Cintron is a very, very credible name. He’s a former world champion but Adrian is very willing to take the test and step up. I’m very proud of him.”
“I’ve definitely paid my dues and March 22, I’m going to show the world what I can do,” Granados said. “I want people to recognize me and realize that I am a prospect to be reckoned with. You’re going to be hearing a lot from me over the next few years.”
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