Tommy Coyle and Chris Algieri are set to meet in a 140-pound matchup on this Saturday’s Joshua-Ruiz card at Madison Square Garden, and as I’ll get into more in tomorrow’s undercard preview (Noon ET on Wednesday!), I have the feeling this is a potential show stealer in terms of action.
Coyle (25-4, 12 KO) is expecting the same.
“I wouldn’t like to be Chris Algieri; I’m bang up for this!” said Coyle. “I just feel I’m coming into my own, in the last 18 months I’ve improved so much as a fighter. It’s all come together and completed me as a fighter.
“It’s his hometown but I think I’ve got enough in my armory to come away victorious. It doesn’t faze me that I’m the underdog. I think we’re both cut from the same cloth. It can only go one way and I think that’s a war.”
Algieri (23-3, 8 KO) won a world title back in 2014 when he upset Ruslan Provodnikov, which got him a big shot at Manny Pacquiao five months later. Pacquiao demolished Algieri over 12 rounds, and Algieri’s career never totally got back on track. He has since lost to Amir Khan and Errol Spence Jr, and picked up wins over lesser opponents. He was out of the sport for nearly three years following the loss to Spence before returning to action last November.
Coyle is well aware of Algieri’s past successes and some of the advantages the New Yorker will have physically, too.
“I met Chris at the Rocky Fielding vs Canelo Alvarez fight,” said Coyle. “Initially I walked past him and Jamie Moore said ‘Do you know who that is?’ I was a bit shocked how tall he was to be honest! I didn’t recognize him, he was so big. I said to him, ‘You’re too good looking to fight!’
“He’s a great fighter, he’s been in with a long list of top names. Only very good fighters take Pacquiao the distance and he beat Provodnikov for the world title. I know that this is a hard fight but this is my time and I think Chris has had his.”
Coyle, at 29, also doesn’t expect to be in the ring a whole lot longer due to his aggressive fighting style, and wants to make his remaining fights count.
“The way I fight puts a lot of miles on the clock, so I want to get out of the game with all my faculties intact,” he said. “I’ve got two or three fights left so I really want to make this last chapter worth reading. I’d love Eddie (Hearn) to get me a world title fight then my last fight would be in Hull, that’s where I started and I’m very proud to be from that city. Where I started is where I’ll finish.”