Carl Froch will defend his IBF super middleweight title against American Yusaf Mack on November 17 in Nottingham. On Thursday, the fighters got together for a press conference to hype the fight.
Eddie Hearn, Matchroom Boxing
"It's not even five months since that epic night here in this very arena against Lucian Bute. ... An unbelievable night, an epic night for British boxing. I think even people who aren't the biggest Carl Froch admirers will bow down and say that was probably one of the biggest nights ever in British boxing. So again we're delighted to bring Carl Froch back to the UK, in the first defense of his IBF super middleweight title.
"We're delighted to welcome the challenger here today, who's flown over from America, Yusaf Mack. We know what to expect from Yusaf. I know that many may feel that he hasn't got the credentials of some of Carl's former opponents, but we don't see it like that. We see a very, very stern test. A big guy, Yusaf Mack, a light heavyweight who's stepping down to his original and I think probably preferred weight, someone who's very dangerous, and someone who's got a shot here to overturn the odds, just like Carl Froch had against Lucian Bute, and we know what happened there.
"I know that Carl's going to be training hard, and Rob McCracken's going to be making sure that he cuts no corners, and he's ready for a real battle with Yusaf Mack.
Percy Custus, Mack's manager
"We've come here ready to fight. We're the USBA champion in Carl Froch's division, his sanctioning body. We appreciate the opportunity for us to come here and try for this title. We really fight at 175, but this is his real weight at 168. 175 is his lay-around weight. We're gonna come here ready to fight. You're all going to see a real good fight that night. I hope none of y'all miss this fight, because it's really gonna be more than y'all probably are expecting."
"I'm happy to get the opportunity. I just want to tell him, come fight night, it's going down. .. I'll be ready. I'm coming here to fight. I ain't coming here to lay down, I'm coming here to fight. I've come to give the champion the fight of his life. That's what I'm coming to do."
"He's a great fighter. He's going to go down in history. But, you know, I'm a great fighter and we're gonna give y'all a great fight come November 17. ... He's a great fighter. I wanna go down as fighting one of the greats."
"It's fantastic to be back at home for the second time. I've been on the road so long, so many years. I've just come out of the American tournament, Super Six World Boxing Classic. I've had eight world title fights, back-to-back. They've not all gone my way. I've lost a close split decision (to Mikkel Kessler), I've lost to Andre Ward, who they're now saying is the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world. I'd love to get that rematch before I decide to hang my gloves up. That's one I'd like to rectify.
"After the Lucian Bute fight and winning the IBF title, I feel like I've rekindled the old flame. It never really burned out, but I feel like I'm back on top of the world, I'm back in great form, great shape. I'm 35 years old, but I'm running faster and feeling fitter and stronger. I've matured late in my career. I've got my strength late on, and I'm really finding my fitness. I feel like I'm in the best shape of my life, I really do. I'm breaking records. It's quite public knowledge that I diarize all my training and my running, and some of the training times I'm hitting and breaking at the minute, I'm surprising myself, I really am. So at 35, I feel I'm very, very much in my prime, in my peak, and there's plenty more to come.
"People are saying, 'When do you think you're going to hang the gloves up? A year? 18 months?' I'm not going to put a time frame on it. As long as I've still got the desire, which I've very much got, as long as I can keep running and performing and getting myself out of bed in the morning, and doing the hard sparring I'm doing -- I did a great 10-round sparring, actually, with Tony Bellew, who's also on the bill, which makes this bill a very exciting bill. He's some fighter that I'm excited is going to become world champion one day. I'm sparring again with him tomorrow and then I've got another five weeks of hard graft on the build-up to the fight with Yusaf Mack.
"I'd like to thank Yusaf Mack and his team for coming over for this press conference and for taking the fight. It's a big shot for him, so I can see why he's took the fight, but he's coming over to the lion's den, as did Lucian Bute. There's only going to be one winner. As far as I'm concerned, I'm there to do the business. And the 17th of November, I will do whatever I need to do to put Yusaf Mack on his back. It's as simple as that.
"You talk about me going down, I don't go down. Everybody knows that. It's trash talk -- I don't wanna get involved in that, but there's only one winner. Three times world champion. Eight world title fights on the spin.
"I'm feeling fit and strong as I've ever felt, so I'm just looking forward to putting on a great fight for my fans. And they've turned out for me again. We've nearly sold this arena out again. Eddie Hearn puts on a fantastic promotion, he does an unbelievable job. So I want to thank Eddie Hearn for being not only a wonderful, handsome man, but being brilliant at his job. I'm not going to get a pay rise for saying that, either. (Hearn: 'You might.') He really does do a fantastic job, and it's great to have a professional team around me, so I can concentrate and relax on getting myself fit, sharp, ready physically and mentally for the fight, and not have to worry about the business end of boxing. And that's what I've always wanted, and that's what I get now with Eddie Hearn.
"Everyone needs to look forward to a fantastic sporting again on November 17. If it's anything like the last one against Bute, the atmosphere and the whole occasion, I've got something to look forward to, the fans have, and so has Yusaf Mack. He should enjoy the whole occasion.
"It is a sport at the end of the day. A lot of fighters face off -- you're getting knocked out, you're going down, I'm gonna do this to him, I'm gonna do that to you. There's not always any need for that. It's two professional athletes in the ring, both wanting to win. Fighters have got an inner respect, an inner ambition, and there's a mutual respect between warriors. We're both fighters, and we both have to put ourselves through the hard pain and graft to get to the point where you fight.
"I've got a lot of respect for Yusaf Mack, and I'm sure that's equally reciprocated, even though he may or may not show it. I don't personally know him. But it's going to be a great fight between two top men. Yusaf Mack's lost a couple of times. I've lost fights. He's only lost against the best. He lost against Tavoris Cloud, who's light heavyweight champion of the world. He lost to Glencoffe Johnson, let's not forget how tough he is. He knocked out Roy Jones Jr, he gave me a 12-round, hard fight. So you've got to give this guy respect, and I'm giving him plenty of respect. I'm looking forward to November 17, so just enjoy yourselves, everybody."