Yesterday kicked off the official press conference for the rematch between Tony Harrison (28-2, 21 KOs) and Jermell Charlo (31-1, 15 KOs), set for June 23 at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. The last time these two fighters met was in December when Harrison pulled off an unlikely unanimous decision win over Charlo to take his WBC super middleweight title, one that many didn’t feel he deserved to win. Charlo certainly didn’t.
And with Charlo being the ever-grumpy fellow he is, he took to the podium to direct some strong words at the current titleholder leading into their rematch. Here’s what he had to say...
“We obviously know what happened [in the first fight]. Like, I’m not the type of person to dwell on anything in the past. I’ma take that L and let it build me. He got two losses already, so he knows what it feels like. I’m the individual that didn’t, at that moment, and now I’ma person that do. And now I’ma come into this new fight with a whole different mindset, a much better game plan. So did it affect me? Of course. Any young fighter my age, doing what we do, putting our life on the line, deserves to win.
“One thing that ya’ll know I do well is destroy those who think they can run their mouth like Mr. Tony do. Enjoy your belt while you got it, right? Of course, you the champ, right? You supposed to get the belt and feel confident and run around like you that dude and all this other extra things.
“And I’m a man outside of boxing. Now I don’t know how ya’ll take disrespect, but I don’t take disrespect well. But you not me [Charlo says to Harrison], and you not in my shoes so keep your mouth shut!...Like I said, I wish a blessing to you and your father, I’m glad that ya’ll got the opportunity again to do what ya’ll do, but you know personally yourself that you didn’t do enough to win that [first] fight. Why in the world is the world saying ‘that was a robbery’?!
“You know, I take that like it’s cool because the best thing that can happen is I get the best redemption ever. And I know for a fact that you never been in a position where you got redemption, so you don’t know how it feel...I’m glad for the changes that I made outside of boxing and I represent a much larger city that got my back. You know, not just the city, that I got a lot of people, I’m the people’s champ all around the world...my popularity has grown since a robbery, do you know what I mean?...
“I’m training, I been training, I took this like a wake up. It was like ‘I’m Jermell Charlo, whatchu doing it for all these years?’ I love what I do. Like I said, I’m glad I kept my composure with this individual because I would’ve really did something bad to him and I had to think about my career first. Yeah. Like I said, ‘Keep your cool, Piru.’ I’m different. I don’t play that. Just as long as you know that, homeboy! I don’t care what you say, you gonna respect me. They call me Mr. Keep Runnin’ Your Mouth, and you fucked up!”