It’s been a little over sixteen months since we last saw former champion Joshua Clottey inside of the ring. Clottey figured to have a fair chance of at least being competitive on that March 2010 night as he faced off with Manny Pacquiao, but the fight never came to him as he was in a defensive shell for the course of twelve painfully dismal rounds as he lost a clear decision.
That loss to the Filipino marvel aside, Clottey has shown that he is a very capable performer, having bested the likes of Zab Judah, Shamone Alvarez and the late Diego ‘Chico’ Corrales while offering up sound efforts against Miguel Cotto and Antonio Margarito in decision losses. Now 34 years old, Clottey’s future seemed to be growing bleaker by the minute but a recent interview with Mike Coppinger at Boxingscene.com offers up hope to his supporters on his future.
<— Slideshow: Amazing images from photographer Howard Schatz as he chronicles Joshua Clottey, Manny Pacquiao, Miguel Cotto, Shane Mosley, Sergio Martinez, Bernard Hopkins, Andre Berto, Mike Tyson and countless other stars
Reflecting on that uneventful loss to Pacquiao, you can sense how adamant Clottey is to prove that it simply wasn’t him at his best that evening.
“I went to training camp for only three weeks,” Clottey stated. “[Pacquiao] had speed and I couldn’t utilize my game plan. It’s not like I’m making excuses; I lost to Pacquiao. I took the fight on short notice because I’m a warrior. If I win, I get the big fights, like with Mayweather. But I didn’t have the time to prepare.”
A lot has changed since Clottey last saw the ring as a professional prizefighter, including the coronation of WBA junior middleweight champion Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez this past March. A practical icon in his native Mexico, Alvarez has intangibles that beguile his 20 years of age but Clottey feels the Redhead is ripe for the picking.
“I remember when they made the fight with Pacquiao, everyone said he’s going to beat me easy. They should give me to Canelo [Alvarez] and see if Canelo is going to beat me easy. I’m going to wear him down if they give me the chance,” Clottey said with confidence.
If not Alvarez, there are several other suitable challenges in the junior middleweight class, including the likes of Erislandy Lara, Alfredo Angulo, the winner of the upcoming rematch between Cotto and Margarito, and several others. Some great fights could be made and after a tune-up or two, Clottey is ready for anything.
“Those guys at 154, I’m going to beat them all if they give me a chance. I’m really here to be something.”
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Chris Robinson is based out of Las Vegas, Nevada. He can be reached at Trimond@aol.com