Grant Is Not Worried About Juanma
"There is No Pressure On My Fighter Lonchti"
By William Trillo
Photos: Chris Farina - Top Rank
Saturday from Atlantic City New Jersey, Top Rank will
put on another of it's Latin Fury PPV cards with the
feature bout being for the WBO Super Bantamweight Belt
as Champion Juan Manuel Lopez (25-0,23 KO's) will be
facing Olivier Lonchti (18-0-2,8 KO's). The general
consensus is Juanma should be too strong for Lonchti,
but that plays right into the hands of Montreal's top
Trainer Howard Grant. "All I keep hearing is we're going
into a losing situation and we're not even supposed to
last with this guy," said Grant, "this is supposed to be
a no win situation for us, so we have nothing to lose."
That's no problem for Grant who has been in this
situation before, "I like to go into these kind of
fights as underdogs. They say we're going to get killed
but you know they said the same thing when we (Librado
Andrade) fought Bute and even though we lost we looked
very good. Then we were supposed get killed when we
(Herman Ngoudjo) fought Castillo and we were supposed to
get killed when we (Walid Smichet) fought Duddy but my
guys are always up to the task and they look good even
Does that mean Grant isn't taking this seriously?
Absolutely not! Howard knows exactly what the stakes are
on Saturday night and he is well aware of who is man
Loncthi is going up against. Grant confirmed "I
personally think Juanma is the best guy and this weight
class and for that reason he is the one going into the
fight with all the weight on his shoulders. Look, he is
a big puncher, he throws a lot of punches, when he gets
hit he doesn't step back."
On paper it sounds like a difficult task but maybe not
according to Grant who added, "I like to go into matches
with fighters like this guy because these big punchers
who like to get hit don't always have strong beards, so
I am very confident."
As to the fighter Lonchti who hails from Cameroon but
know lives in Montreal Grant noted, "Olivier is in good
shape and in top form. He is very sharp with his punches
and he is hitting very hard. I think he is going to
impress a lot of people and I do believe he can pull off
Regardless of what the experts say Grant truly feels his
fighter has a good chance,"This is boxing, not Tiger
Woods walking onto the 18th hole with a 6 stroke lead,
you know what I mean?, Grant rhetorically inquired.
As to Lonchti's mind set Grant said, "He is relaxed,
this is his first fight in The United States, it's a big
fight, a World Title fight and nobody in The States
knows about this guy because Montreal is his home base.
But you know what Bill, my kid is going to do okay and
if he stay's focused and does the things we have been
working on he just might pull off a big surprise!"
Bottom line, Howard has been in the underdog role many
times with his pupils and he is not worried about what
the so called experts are saying.
The message is clear and history speaks for itself.
Grant fighters are always very well prepared for the
task at hand and this Saturday should be no different
for him or his young fighter from Cameroon.
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