March 30, 2011

Michael Katsidis vs Robert Guerrero Conference Call

LIGHTWEIGHT contenders Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero and Michael “The Great” Katsidis took a short break from their training on Tuesday March 22nd, 2011 to discuss via conference call their upcoming 12 round lightweight battle scheduled for April 9th in Las Vegas on the undercard of the Eric Morales-Marcos Maidana HBO "Action Heroes" Pay-Per-View card. The California native Robert Guerrero (28-1-1 18 KOs) is training close to home in Las Vegas and confidently reports that “everything is falling into place” and that he is very excited and ready for the fight against Katsidis which he calls a “fan’s fight.”

The Australian native Michael Katsidis (27-3 22 KOs) is training half way around the world in Thailand, claiming he does so because, “it’s very tough and rugged conditions here with very few luxuries. This is my job, this is my living so it’s as simple as that. I’m not here for a holiday.” Katsidis appeared to brush off questions and concerns raised about a small cut he recently received in training over his right eye. Asked repeatedly about the severity of the cut and how many stitches it took, Katsidis responded glibly, "I didn’t even count” although he did half-jokingly say he would be circling to his left against the southpaw Guerrero come fight night.

Hell and Back

The recent outside of the ring trials and tribulations for both fighters have been well documented. Michael Katsidis recently lost his brother Stathi Katsidis who passed away suddenly and unexpectedly last year during the run up to his brother Michael's fight against Lightweight Champion Juan Manuel Marquez, with Katsidis dedicating that fight to his late brother. Katsidis was stopped in the 9th round against Marquez in a grueling back and forth fight that many considered to be a fight of the year candidate.  

Robert Guerrero has also faced his own outside the ring adversity recently, standing close by his wife Casey Guerrero as she faced a very difficult fight of her own against cancer. Guerrero reports that his wife is doing very well today cancer-free and that as a couple they have been able to move forward after these challenging times in their lives. Katsidis seemed to sum it up best when he said regarding recent setbacks “I have a belief that if something doesn’t kill you, it makes you more strong.”

The Guerrero family must certainly echo such sentiments as well after what they have been though.

Face to Face
Robert Guerrero and Michael Katsidis are very different fighters from very different backgrounds. Both have overcome incredible adversity outside the ring and on April 9th, their worlds apart will finally collide in the ring for all to see as both men come face to face after having been to hell and back. Robert Guerrero was recently honored by the boxing writers of America with a special award for courage shown outside of the ring. Clearly, both men are worthy of such an award; courage being in no small supply for either fighter.

Despite what the sanctioning bodies have to say about this fight and whatever title belts they may or may not end up associating with it, the fight itself looks to be a solid match-up between two Top 10 lightweight contenders willing to risk much against each other in hopes of bigger and better things, the former featherweight and super featherweight titlist Robert Guerrero stating boldly "I want to try to win a world title in every weight class I hit."

Michael Katsidis seemed equally as motivated to make his mark at lightweight, believing this fight to be "for a world title" and adding that, "you want to achieve as much as you can." He also challenged reigning Ring Lightweight Champion Juan Manuel Marquez to "piss or get off the pot", referring presumably to the Champion’s uncertain future plans at lightweight and how that uncertainty complicates matters for the rest of the division.

Robert Guerrero by unanimous decision or by TKO late on cuts.

The feeling here is that Guerrero posses better boxing skills and will put them to good use building up an early lead in this fight. Katsidis will rally in the middle rounds with his aggressive style and make it competitive but a cut (or cuts) in the later rounds will bloody Katsidis and slow him down as Guerrero pulls away to either win on points or win by TKO on cuts.