36-year-old heavyweight veteran Timur Ibragimov gets a big chance in the HBO co-feature on Saturday night's Khan vs Peterson card, facing hyped American prospect and former college football player Seth "Mayhem" Mitchell. While Mitchell has been celebrated as a potential American hope in the heavyweight division, Ibragimov (30-3-1, 16 KO) is a serious step up in class, and could be a very dangerous opponent.
On his training camp:
"Usually, I've never had a camp. The last, like, ten fights, I don't really have a camp. But for this fight, I had almost two months, like seven weeks I was in camp. And I really feel like I'm really ready. ... Of course I'm training all the time. With me, even one year, that's why I don't care. Most people say, 'Oh he didn't fight for a year,' but I'm still in the gym. I'm always in the gym."
On what he sees in Mitchell on tape:
"Very strong guy. [That's it?] Yeah. ... I think he doesn't have too much experience like I have. I understand, if you see a lot of Mexican fighters, they don't have amateur experience, but they have like, 60, 70, 80 fights professional, and they have like maybe 300, 400 rounds sparring with champions. This is real experience. But a guy like Seth -- very tough, of course tough, because this is his hometown, and he's got to look good here. And this is national TV. That's why I'm really prepared for a tough fight."
On any issues fighting in Mitchell's hometown:
"Not really. I go to Germany and beat Timo Hoffmann, I go to Miami and beat Oliver McCall. That's why I'm telling you this, I love America. Because if you're good, they will cheer for you."
On what a win means for him:
"Let's see. Let's win first. Let's beat him first, and then we'll see what will happen."