Super middleweight David Benavidez is set to make his ring return on May 21, when he’ll take on David Lemieux in Glendale, AZ, a fight which will air live on Showtime. And in anticipation of the bout David Benavidez spoke to media members during a virtual press conference, expressing his enthusiasm for this platform.
“I’m very excited to go into this fight against Lemieux, because he’s a guy I’ve watched for a long time and I like his style,” Benavidez said. “We both have similar styles because we go for the knockout. That gets me very excited and motivates me a lot.
“We’re also fighting for the interim title and that makes the stage that much bigger. I’ve been training hard in camp for about three months getting ready for this fight. I’m just ready to go back home and win that title.
“If you win the interim title that means the next fight has to be for the title. I don’t think it should be any difference in this case. If Canelo Alvarez wants to fight at light heavyweight, then he’s going to have to vacate. It’s only fair.”
Speaking about how his training camp has been coming along and his expectations for the bout, Benavidez shared some thoughts on his mindset heading into the fight.
“I train extremely hard to make sure I get the knockout. I just feel like I’m at my peak right now. I have a lot of skills, power and great experience. I know it won’t be easy, but I’ve done everything right in the gym.
“I see flaws in David’s game and I’m sure he sees flaws in me. I know he wants to stop me, and I want to stop him. This is going to be a great fight for the fans. This could be the Fight of the Year because of what’s at stake and because of the type of fighters we are. We’re two bulls going in there to see who has the most heart.
“I just want everyone to see that I’m the best in this weight class. I’m only looking at the fight in front of me. I have to win this fight before I can win anything else. But I do feel like everyone knows where I stand in this division. I’ve been calling out the best and I respect Lemieux for stepping up to take this fight.”
This super middleweight fight is scheduled to take place in Benavidez’s home state of Arizona, and he fully intends on taking advantage of the opportunity to show out in front of his local crowd.
“I wanted to fight back in Arizona again because we had a great event in November. This is my first title fight back at home and it’s a dream come true for me. Everything has fallen into place for me. I’ve had an amazing camp and I’m preparing for a great opponent. This has all the makings for a great fight. The energy is right. This is one of the biggest fights of my life and that’s how seriously I’m taking it.
“We’ve been in camp for a long time and we’ve been feeding off of each other’s energy. I’ve been putting in the work and getting my miles in. Seeing Jose Valenzuela and Diego Pacheco have great victories gives me even more energy. We’re all like brothers and we all push each other.”
Should Benavidez successfully get through this fight, he says his mission will be to become undisputed champion in the division, and then adds that he’s been seeking out the biggest names in the division.
“The main goal for myself is to become unified champion at 168-pounds. It’s not just about me. I have a lot of fans that support me, and I’m doing it for them. They’ve supported me so much, so I want them to know that I’ve put 110% into training camp every time they come to a fight.
“I feel like I deserve the biggest fights. I’ve paid my dues and I’ve been here for a long time. But I have plenty of fuel in the gym solely because of how big this fight is. I think the other top guys are making a mistake not giving me the fight now, because the more I’m in the ring, the more I’m learning. It’s going to turn around and bite them when it’s time to get in the ring with me. Everything is going to be through the roof.”