By Chris Cella
Through his last 16 fights, dating back to 2009, Adrien “The Problem” Broner has finished his opponents in all but one of the bouts, ending the fight in the first three rounds in 9 of the trips between the ropes.
Last November he put on a spectacle as he punished then champion Antonio DeMarco for eight rounds before the fight was called to a halt. In doing so he captured the WBC lightweight title, and on February 16 in Atlantic City, he will look to defend his belt against Gavin “The Rock” Rees (37-1-1, 18 KO).
During his dominance in the super featherweight division Broner made his opponents look like glorified sparring partners rather than title contenders, and the fast and powerful champion will be looking to start 2013 off with a bang by rolling through Rees.
“Atlantic City here we come again, and it will be great to have my first fight of 2013 in the same ring and place as my last fight of 2012,” said Broner. “I see the outcome of this fight against Rees being similar to my last fight as I plan to knock him out too. I am a two-time world champion now, feel great at this weight and can’t wait to show the world why I am the best boxing has to offer. A new year, a new era and it starts on February 16.”
Never short of showmanship—inside the ring or out—the 23-year-old undefeated world champion exudes a confidence similar to Floyd Mayweather Jr., and rightfully so.
He has appeared nearly untouchable through the first stretch of his young career. Turning pro in 2008, Broner has remained quite active inside the ropes, and will look to do more of the same going forward in 2013.
Despite coming into this fight a heavy underdog, Rees has the chance to put his boxing skills on display in front of a worldwide audience. This will be only the first time in his 39-fight career that he will be lacing up the leather outside of the UK; and while he has dismissed the opponents in front of him en route to landing this world title shot, he has yet to face a high caliber opponent like Broner, so it will be nearly impossible to prepare for what he will face Feb. 16.
“I didn’t think twice about taking this fight,” said Rees. “Broner is a fantastic boxer and a huge talent, but I am confident I can upset the odds on February 16 and become a two-division world champion. I’ve got the edge when it comes to experience and under my trainer Gary Lockett, I have a new lease of life. I believe that besides DeMarco, I am the toughest opponent he’s faced and I think I will cause him plenty of trouble, especially if he underestimates what I can do. This is a massive opportunity for me and it would be a dream come true to do it in the United States. I am going to be putting it all on the line to make my dream a reality.”
Rees has passion and heart, but unfortunately they are only two of the many components it takes to become a world champion.
The Problem has tunnel vision, and wants to send a message that he belongs amongst the top of the pound-for-pound list.
This fight is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions and R&R Promotinos, and will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:30 pm. Eastern February 16.