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Kelly Pavlik Has a Very Good Reason for Wanting to Fight Andre Ward

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"Andre Ward is a great fighter and he proved it with what he did in the tournament. I’m not calling him out I’m just saying I would love to fight him because he is the top dog. I would love to also fight Froch, Bute and Kessler. Also, Chavez Jr. is having a hard time making 160, how about having us fight at a catch weight of 165? I’ll fight him there. He has nothing to lose.

"If I beat him he can move back to 160. I moved up to fight Taylor at 166 for the rematch and all the way up to 170 to fight Hopkins. After the Hopkins fight I moved back down. He could do the same thing if he lost," said former Undisputed Middleweight Champion of the world and current super middleweight contender Kelly Pavlik when asked who he would like to face in the future. Check out what else he had to say about the future of his career moving forward.

DL:  Kelly, congratulations on your quick knockout victory over Aaron Jaco. You hurt him initially with the left hook in the first round. Have you been working on the left hook a lot in the gym?

KP: Thank you, yes everyone looks for the right hand and Robert and I worked on the left hand in training camp. Over and over again we worked on the jab, left hook (both to the head and body). When we would do five or six rounds on the mitts, a lot of them were with the left hand. My left hook is very fast and very quick.

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DL: You are left handed away from boxing, but fight orthodox ala Oscar De La Hoya. You should have a lot of power in the left, but you are known for your right hand.

KP: I played baseball and swing both left handed and right handed, but when I went for a home run I would bat as a righty. I write and eat with my left hand but I do a lot of other stuff with my right hand. I do see better with my left eye. I’m basically ambidextrous.

DL: How different is working with Robert Garcia and living in southern California during training as opposed to working with Jack Loew and living in Youngstown, Ohio?

KP: Robert is more repetitious and works on the small things that matter. He is more detail oriented than Jack was. Jack was a great trainer and I am not meaning to be critical of him. Robert is the type of guy that will make you work on something over and over again. He is an all around good trainer and covers every aspect of fighting. He will break down everything I am doing wrong and go over it with me.  As far as living in Oxnard, California versus Youngstown is concerned, I have fewer distractions in Oxnard. Everything is boxing, boxing, boxing and I like it. Before I looked at going to the gym as a job and now I look at it as fun.

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DL: How many more tune-up fights are you looking to have before facing the elite again?

KP: I’m hoping the next one on June 8th against Scott Sigmon will be the last one. I’m being told that the one after that in September will be a big fight. I don’t know if it will be for a world title or not. I doubt it because it would be kind of quick, but that would be great.

DL: What did you think of Sergio Martinez’s recent performance and how badly to you want to face him again? You knocked him down and were doing very well against him.

KP: Yes, I was doing really well against him. I think me at 80% would have beaten him and maybe stopped him. I think he looked horrible in his last fight and I think Macklin was not as good of a fighter as everyone built him up to be. But, you can’t really knock Martinez because after he beat me he has been beating everyone by knockout and doing what he is supposed to do as the Middleweight Champion. I’m not knocking the kid. I would love to fight him again, but I don’t know if I can make 160. We could fight at a catch weight fight of say 163. The problem is that I’m a big guy. I don’t have small bones like Paul Williams for example. That’s why it’s really hard for me to make 160 now. If I were to let myself go and not work out I would walk around at about 195. Right now since I’m running a little bit I weigh about 180.

DL:  What other middleweights or super middleweights would you like to face in the near future? I think you versus Andre Ward and even Bute, Froch and Kessler would all be great fights.

KP: Yes, Andre Ward is a great fighter and he proved it with what he did in the tournament. I’m not calling him out I’m just saying I would love to fight him because he is the top dog. I would love to also fight Froch, Bute and Kessler. Also, Chavez Jr. is having a hard time making 160, how about having us fight at a catch weight of 165? I’ll fight him there. He has nothing to lose. If I beat him he can move back to 160. I moved up to fight Taylor at 166 for the rematch and all the way up to 170 to fight Hopkins. After the Hopkins fight I moved back down. He could do the same thing if he lost.

DL: Do you have any interest in fighting Jermain Taylor again? He has embarked on a comeback as well.

KP: No, I have no interest in fighting Taylor again. I wish him the best and hope that he wins another world title. I’m not being selfish, but I already beat him twice. I have nothing to gain. I love Jermain ---he’s a great person but I just think another fight against him would be pointless. I wish him the best and God bless him.

DL:  Have you ever used creative visualization techniques and the Law of Attraction in order to be successful in the ring?

KP: I go into a fight and stick to a game plan. I will go through a fight a little bit in my head, but the day of the fight I just look to execute the game plan. With Garcia there is a Plan A and a Plan B, with Jack there was only a Plan A. Luckily for me I’ve been a smart enough fighter from having good amateur and professional experience that I have been able to take over myself when I was with Jack, but now with Robert I don’t have to do that as much .

DL: What was it like growing up in Youngstown and how did you get interested in boxing?

KP: I had a great childhood and had great parents. My dad worked his butt off and did everything possible. My mom was a hard worker too. I played baseball and football along with boxing when I was a kid. Youngstown was a tough area to grow up. It was very blue collar and we have some of the most loyal sports fans. At the same time you have people that will bring you down in a heartbeat. I don’t mean to knock it. It’s a place with only about 75,000 people and there can be a lot of negativity when you are a big fish in a small pond. Really it’s more the media that is negative than the people. The local newspaper and media station in Youngstown are the most negative part of living in Youngstown. For example, the recent incident I had when I hit a lamp post with an ATV made headline news there.  There were three murders and they had finally indicted a kid that shot his pregnant mom and the breaking news was me hitting a lamp post with an ATV.  

DL: I noticed that most of the biggest punchers below heavyweight are lanky guys like you. Do you feel like even to this day your opponents underestimate your power based on your appearance and build regardless of how many previous opponents you have knocked out?

KP: I think some still might. That’s a very good question. What I think makes lanky fighters such big punchers is the snap. In boxing every knockout in boxing is the whiplash motion of the neck. That’s why football players wear helmets. They do that to prevent concussions.

DL: Do you think you generate more pounds per square inch than most fighters your size? If there was a machine like in Rocky 4 that measured pounds per square inch would you be among the highest for your weight class?

Get the rest of this article over at Rope-a-Dope Radio.