James DeGale has arrived on American soil for the final leg of his training camp, as he prepares for his April 7 rematch with Caleb Truax, the man who stunned him in December to lift the IBF super middleweight title.
DeGale (23-2-1, 14 KO) says he came back too soon from surgery last time out, and that he approached the fight in the wrong way.
“When the doctor told me that some athletes recover from that injury in six months, I had it set in my mind that I would box again in December,” said DeGale. “No one was going to tell me otherwise. I rushed my injury and I wasn’t at my full fitness. I can only blame myself.
“My mindset at the time was that I can beat Truax with no hands. It was the wrong way to think. I’m an elite fighter and this is a dangerous sport. I’ve only got myself to blame.”
The rematch, he vows, will go differently, and his training camp has him ready.
“This time, I’m going to make it right. My training is like night and day compared to last camp. On my best day, no one in this division can beat me. No disrespect to Caleb Truax, but I’m a much better fighter. Now I’m training how I should have trained for the last fight.”
DeGale also has no concerns about moving his camp to the United States.
“The U.S. is really my second home now,” said DeGale. “In the past when I’ve fought on the East Coast I’ve gone down to Miami to train heading into the fight. This time California seemed like the perfect place to go before Las Vegas.
“This is my first time training in California, but so far I’ve been really comfortable at the Team Watson Boxing Club. I’ve got some great sparring lined up, including working with Gabriel Rosado. Most importantly my body is super fit and injury free. Everything is geared to getting my title back on April 7 and leaving no doubt in the ring.”
Caleb Truax (29-3-2, 18 KO), of course, will have his own say on April 7. Will DeGale be able to avenge the stunning upset, or does Truax simply have his number?