Status: Junior middleweight boxer. His record is 9-0 (5 KO’s).
Ht: 5-11 Wt: 154
DOB: December 11, 1989 In: Passaic, N.J.
First Boxing Memory: “Going to the gym the first day. Everybody in the neighborhood, all the kids and my brother started boxing. So I went in there with them and wanted to spar. I remember telling George Martinez, a trainer and police officer – on the first day – that I wanted to spar. And he was like, No, no. Then he left the second day, then I sparred with the other coach. I beat the first guy up but the second guy whooped my ass. I just got beat up bad. I was crying and everything. My brother took me out of the ring. That kid always beat me up. I was eight. I never got the best of him. I always wanted to get better to beat him but I never could’ve.”
Boxing Inspirations: “What inspires me? To be the best. Not just to be a world champion. I want to be one of the best world champions. I think about that every day. I want to bring that era back when they would fight from the first bell to the last. I want to bring that back, when everyone stands up and clapping for you, you wanna be the best. I want to be known as one of the best.”
Hobbies/Leisure Activities: “I’m competitive. I like playing basketball, ping pong, anything. I like hangin’ out too.”
Last Book Read: “I can’t remember.”
First Job: “Six years old, I used to sell chocolates in the street. I was a hustler.”
First Car: “I don’t have a car.”
Musical Tastes: “Hip-hop.”
Favorite TV Shows: “Entourage, MTV, Discovery Channel.”
Favorite Meal: “My mom’s rice, beans, fried fish.”
Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: “Vanilla.”
Greatest Sports Moment: “So far…going to the Philippines with Manny Pacquiao and Freddie Roach. Getting the chance to be in the ring with him. And giving him good work, one of the hardest work in the camp. And I can say I gave him great work, hard work. (How did the very first round go?) I actually got the best of him [smiles]. He even said it. We were in the interview room. He was being funny. All the reporters were interviewing me and he was like in the background jumping rope and saying, Tell em you whooped my butt! All the media was talking with me about it after the sparring.”
Most Painful Moment: “Getting my jaw broken in the third round (vs. Quinton Whitaker in Oct. 2010, UD 6 win). And fighting through it for another three rounds. It hurt so much. I fought through it. (From a punch?) I think it was an elbow.”
Funny Boxing Memory: “For me it was I was going to the ring and they put hardcore rock, like medieval rock music, and I was like – this was the undercard of Sergio Martinez-Kelly Pavlik, right before that fight. It was so packed in there (Boardwalk Hall). They put some crazy hardcore rock music and I walked into ring, I’m like walkin’ and thinking, Ah come on change the music! They made a mistake on my music. I walked in the ring laughing but at first I was mad. It was like that crazy, crazy rock music.”
Strangest Fight: “I had 143 amateur fights. The strangest thing was in Key West in my sixth pro fight. I hit the guy (Carlos Rodriguez) with a body shot and his cup fell off. Then they had to strip him in the ring. Take his pants off him in the ring. In front of everybody. On national TV. And put the cup on. That was funny.”
Favorite Boxers To Watch: “I like to watch Sergio Martinez. He’s exciting. Manny Pacquiao is exciting. He tries to give you a show. Mayweather. Now, with all the hype, I want to see what happens if he fights Manny. But I don’t like his fighting style. He’s boring. They have to make that fight. That’s the only fight I want to see.”
Favorite Sport Outside Boxing: “Basketball, I guess.
Toughest Part Of Boxing: “Training. Getting ready for the fight. You have to train hard and be focused. You have to mentally challenge yourself to be in the training camp, the whole time, those two or three months. The ring part is fun for me. I love being in the ring. I love fighting. That’s the best time in my life, when I’m in the ring. ”
People Qualities Most Admired: “Just be yourself. Just be humble. Don’t try to be somebody you’re not.”