Seth Mitchell heard the calls that maybe he needed a new trainer after his November 17 loss to Johnathon Banks, but the 30-year-old former Michigan State linebacker says he's got nobody to blame but himself for the setback, and that his trainer gave him the right game plan.
"Andre [Hunter] gave great instructions. We had a great game plan going into that fight, man. Like I said, nothing that Johnathon Banks did was a surprise to me. But people were like, "You need a new trainer," and, "You need a new this or that." But my trainer didn't tell me to go out there and lunge. He didn't tell me to go out there and be reckless and be overly aggressive. Sometimes, you've got to point the finger at yourself.
"You know, I know what we worked on, and one of the main things Andre said was that we've got to watch out for his left hook when he's up against the ropes. I heard that over, and over, and over again in training camp. But what did I get caught with? This was after I had been hurt and he was up against the ropes, I got caught with the left hook."
Mitchell (25-1-1, 19 KO) won the first round of the fight, but was caught and finished off in the second round by Banks (29-1-1, 19 KO), a fighter the same age but many years older in terms of ring experience and savvy.
Not wanting to try and hit reset on his career, Mitchell is headed toward a February 16 rematch with Banks, a gutsy call from a fighter who can't afford another loss if he wants to keep his name in the mix at heavyweight. Another loss to Banks, and Mitchell will be written off, at least for the time being, as having any hope of becoming a serious contender.
The Banks-Mitchell rematch will be the HBO co-feature to the Adrien Broner-Gavin Rees fight from Atlantic City.