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  David Benavidez vs. David Lemieux
Virtual Press Conference

Unbeaten two-time world champion David ďEl Bandera RojaĒ BenavŪdez and former world champion David Lemieux previewed their 12-round showdown for the vacant Interim WBC Super Middleweight Title with both knockout artists forecasting fireworks during a virtual press conference Tuesday before headlining live on SHOWTIME Saturday, May 21 from Gila River Arena in Glendale, Ariz. in a Premier Boxing Champions event.

The SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXINGģ telecast begins at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT headlined by BenavŪdez returning to fight in his home state of Arizona for the second-straight outing after delivering a knockout victory over Kyrone Davis in November 2021 on SHOWTIME. He will be taking on a hard-hitting former champion in Lemieux, making May 21 a clash of power punchers, as the two fighters have combined for 58 knockouts in their 68 wins (85% KO rate).

Here is what the fighters had to say Tuesday:


ďIím very excited to go into this fight against Lemieux, because heís a guy Iíve watched for a long time and I like his style. We both have similar styles because we go for the knockout. That gets me very excited and motivates me a lot.

ďWeíre also fighting for the interim title and that makes the stage that much bigger. Iíve been training hard in camp for about three months getting ready for this fight. Iím just ready to go back home and win that title.

ďIf you win the interim title that means the next fight has to be for the title. I donít think it should be any difference in this case. If Canelo Alvarez wants to fight at light heavyweight, then heís going to have to vacate. Itís only fair.

ďI train extremely hard to make sure I get the knockout. I just feel like Iím at my peak right now. I have a lot of skills, power and great experience. I know it wonít be easy, but Iíve done everything right in the gym.

ďI see flaws in Davidís game and Iím sure he sees flaws in me. I know he wants to stop me, and I want to stop him. This is going to be a great fight for the fans. This could be the Fight of the Year because of whatís at stake and because of the type of fighters we are. Weíre two bulls going in there to see who has the most heart.

ďI just want everyone to see that Iím the best in this weight class. Iím only looking at the fight in front of me. I have to win this fight before I can win anything else. But I do feel like everyone knows where I stand in this division. Iíve been calling out the best and I respect Lemieux for stepping up to take this fight.

ďI wanted to fight back in Arizona again because we had a great event in November. This is my first title fight back at home and itís a dream come true for me. Everything has fallen into place for me. Iíve had an amazing camp and Iím preparing for a great opponent. This has all the makings for a great fight. The energy is right. This is one of the biggest fights of my life and thatís how seriously Iím taking it.

ďWeíve been in camp for a long time and weíve been feeding off of each otherís energy. Iíve been putting in the work and getting my miles in. Seeing Jose Valenzuela and Diego Pacheco have great victories gives me even more energy. Weíre all like brothers and we all push each other.

ďThe main goal for myself is to become unified champion at 168-pounds. Itís not just about me. I have a lot of fans that support me, and Iím doing it for them. Theyíve supported me so much, so I want them to know that Iíve put 110% into training camp every time they come to a fight.

ďI feel like I deserve the biggest fights. Iíve paid my dues and Iíve been here for a long time. But I have plenty of fuel in the gym solely because of how big this fight is. I think the other top guys are making a mistake not giving me the fight now, because the more Iím in the ring, the more Iím learning. Itís going to turn around and bite them when itís time to get in the ring with me. Everything is going to be through the roof.Ē


ďIím expecting a great fight. David BenavŪdez is a very tough fighter. Weíve been watching him for a while. Heís always very exciting. His style of fighting Ė he comes to fight Ė thereís no messing around with him. Thatís my style too. Two bulls going in there and may the best man win this title. We want that WBC belt around my waste and Iím planning on having it on fight night.

ďI know itís a difficult fight. Iím training very hard and doing everything I need to do inside the gym. I donít want to lose this opportunity. I know BenavŪdez is a great fighter. Iím going to work very hard and bring the best that David Lemieux can bring. Iím leaving with the WBC title on fight night.

ďI do believe that my power will translate at 168 pounds. Iíve been working a lot to integrate into the 168-pound division and I believe my power will be at its peak on fight night. BenavŪdez is a big guy. We know that. But weíre preparing and we have the right sparring partners. Iím going to go in there and be very strong. Itís been a long time since Iíve had an opponent like BenavŪdez, but Iím excited. Iím very hyped up about this fight. I know what a victory will do for my career and I wonít miss my shot.

ďIím not looking past this fight. Iím just concentrated on Benavidez. This is a big fight ahead of me. Canelo chooses a lot of his fights but there are rules in boxing that you have to respect. The winner of the interim belt has to fight the champion so if he follows the rules, the rules are the rules. Thatís it.

ďItís definitely a big task in front of me. When I sat down with my team and BenavŪdezís name came up, we knew it was a tough fight. Heís a tough fighter and a big guy, but weíre preparing and getting ready for him. Itís all in the preparation. Styles make fights. I have the style to hurt BenavŪdez and Iím training hard to beat this guy.

ďAnything can be done, you just have to go out and do it. David BenavŪdez is a very good fighter but everybody is beatable. Nobody is invincible. Thatís what we have to prove. Thereís no cheating boxing. You train hard for a fight. You donít underestimate your opponent and surprises can happen. Iím planning on bringing that title back home to Montreal.

ďRegardless of your age, itís really now or never in every fight in the boxing ring. You donít get many chances to leave a good mark in the game, so every fight needs to be taken very seriously, especially a fight of this magnitude. Thereís a lot at stake for me. I know Iím the underdog, but I donít care. Iím just going in there to fight, underdog or not. Iíve been the underdog in the past and Iíve won the fights. It doesnít really bother me.

ďThe eight pounds makes a world of a difference. 160 pounds was very difficult to make, especially towards the end. I feel great training at 168. Iím very comfortable making that weight. Iím training very hard, building strength and muscle and not worrying about cutting weight. Iím feeling great.

ďI feel like Iíve been underestimated during my career. But the only way to come back is with a strong victory against an opponent of an elite level. Thatís what Iím planning on doing on May 21.Ē


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