Chris “Nightmare” Arreola Fighting For Credibility

Arreola_drops_Quesada_Aug._2010Until a prizefighter gets knocked out blotto he’s always in the hunt and that goes for Chris “The Nightmare” Arreola too.

In spite of losses to a couple of Eastern bloc fighters, WBC titleholder Vitali Klitschko and former cruiserweight champ Tomasz Adamek, the heavyweight from Riverside, California remains a contender.

Arreola (29-2, 25 KOs) fights Joey Abell (27-4, 26 KOs) tonight at Pechanga Resort and Casino and more importantly battles to maintain credibility among American heavyweights. A loss could sink the Mexican-American boxer faster than an anchor made of Kaiser Steel.

Fans in America are beginning to fade from the Arreola train. The loss to Klitschko wasn’t so bad, but the loss to Adamek, well, that one was somewhat embarrassing. Even to Arreola it was one of his darker moments in the sport with many pointing to a lack of commitment to training.

“I really want to kick the heck out of him one day,” said Arreola of Adamek, while somewhat admitting that he did not prepare diligently. “I was never tired in the Klitschko fight. As for Adamek, it did come to play.”

Arreola’s promoter and manager fear the Riverside heavyweight was poised for yet another letdown but he was quickly shipped to Houston, Texas. So far, the move has worked according to plan.

With Houston-based trainer Ronnie Shields the gallivanting Arreola was unable to miss appointments with trainer Henry Ramirez. Unless he wanted to take his Dodge Challenger a couple thousand miles to his Southern California haunts. Instead, he stuck around and trained.

“I haven’t missed a day,” Arreola said.

With both Shields and Ramirez overlooking the heavyweight’s training, the camp has provided some focus for his fight with Abell, a hard-hitting heavyweight from Minnesota.

After spending several years under Ramirez’s guidance, the words of wisdom are not often heeded by Arreola. Under Shields, a new voice, the directions are seemingly piercing the deaf ear syndrome.

“I got complacent with my power punches,” explains Arreola. “I fell into my punches a lot and got hit because of it.”

Shields worked to eliminate some of Arreola’s flaws including the awkward looking right cross that makes experts wince. And also the little used jab.

“We worked on better head movement and working the jab,” Ramirez said. “When things aren’t going Chris’s way, he’ll go back to the jab.”

Crowds have dwindled slowly for Riverside heavyweight Arreola. Maybe fans feel that the Riverside heavyweight doesn’t train and doesn’t care.

“I care a lot about the fans, that’s why I’m here in Houston working my butt off,” said Arreola by telephone.

Arreola, 29, sets the table for a strong fight card that also features his stablemate Josesito Lopez (28-3, 16 KOs) who boxes undefeated Mike Dallas Jr. (17-0-1, 7 KOs) in a 10 round junior welterweight match.

Both Riverside prizefighters know a loss can set them back dramatically.


In the junior welterweight match up, Lopez tests the speedy Dallas, whose first pro win occurred at Pechanga Casino.

“He has never been in the ring with a fighter like me, I guarantee that,” said Lopez, 26, who began as a junior lightweight and now fights at the 140-pound junior welterweight division. “I am going to take him into the rounds where he will have to dig deep down.”

Lopez has not lost in almost three years and has beaten quality opponents such as Marvin Cordova, Patrick Lopez and Tyrone Harris. It’s experience with high caliber boxers that gives the Riverside pugilist confidence.

“It is really an advantage for me to be in the ring with Mike Dallas, Jr. because I know exactly what I have to do in there to win,” said Lopez.

Ramirez also trains Lopez and says the junior welterweight needs to work inside.

“Jose needs to cut the distance down and take Mike Dallas out of his comfort zone,” Ramirez said.

The two Riverside boxers Lopez and Arreola began their pro careers almost simultaneously. Both need wins to continue, especially Arreola who has big dreams of fighting in front of tens of thousands of fans one day.

“One of my ultimate goals is to fight in Dodger Stadium in front of thousands of fans,” said Arreola. “I want fans to be excited about boxing. Dodger fans, Raider fans, I want everybody to want to see boxing.”

Both fights on the Goossen-Tutor Promotions card will be televised live on ESPN2. Go to our Forum, and drop a prediction in there.

Comment on this article


Isaiah :

How seriously should we take Chris Arreola this time? If he trains seriously, he is a major threat. If not, and he keeps on getting heavier and heavier as his career goes on, let's just go ahead and photoshop a picture of Jabba the Hutt into an ESPN fight against whatever tomato can someone can dig up and I'll ask you if you can tell the difference. Past time for a talented guy like himself to get his act together.

Smoke :

I hope Cristobal has truly got his act together. I really want to like this guy.

FighterforJC :

3 things Arreola got going for him: 1. He's Mexican 2. He speaks fluent English 3. See #1 and #2

brownsugar :

It's interesting to me that Areola says "I haven't missed a day of training".. that's like somebody patting themselves on the back for working a 40hour week. who is this Abel guy with the near 99% KO ratio?? did he get credit for tipping some cows in Minnesota??. Anyway I'll be tuning in... this'll be a good snack in a very lean month of boxing and hopefully tide me over untill tommorrow nite!!!!

FighterforJC :

I guess what Arreola was bragging about is that he hasn't used any sick days or vacation hours. You're allowed those in training, right?

brownsugar :

lol... don't forget holidays...... Just took a look at "Minnesota Ice" on youtube,.. he's a former College Defensive Back for 3 years at North Carolina. after watching him work I may have to take back my "cow tipping" comment(although I may not be "Able" to resist commenting on his promoters use of fat ring girls). .....Abell is a bonafide flat footed banger. He's not a dumb fighter. I mean he tries to pick his spots and is capable of punching in combination. At 6'5' with his power he presents a very real threat to Areola and I'm wondering if this bout is actually a showcase bout for Abell with Areola being the designated opponent?? Areola had better be prepared because Abell is very able when it comes to scoring KO's with either hand. And his approach to boxing is very simple......just set up oportunities to land hard punches.

brownsugar :

Abell is another in a long line of former college football players who are bringing thier defensive lineman strength into the ring. One of the others is Seth Michell who I believe is from Michigan state and is the same style of fighter.... set em' up and knock em' down. These guys don't have the finess of guys who grew up in the amateurs... but being former college athletes... they don't fight dumb and know how to maximize their greatest resource, move guys into the corner and use hard flat footed two fisted punching. Tonights bout is going to be real interesting and Areola is not being fed a can of tomatoes... this could be a real crossroads fight.

Pete Egley Jr :

[B]Hey B Sug (How come you dance so good - gotta luv the Roast!), what did you think of the blowout? I'm still not sold on Arreola - perhaps he would call me a hater but I just don't think he's legit world class (yet, at least). I'm still on the look out for someone new to come along. I was just looking at an old issue of The Ring with David Haye on the cover. He's still the guy I'm interested in at heavy. On a punch and get out note I guess the Lindsay Garbatt vs. Jelena Mrdjenovich rematch was pretty good. Very close match. Anyway, good to see all the televised boxing on "regular" TV. Good scouting on Arreola's opponent, Sug (sincerely). One parting shot (lol), I looked over Melinda Cooper's record in the Mary Ann Owen book. I'm convinced Cooper is as dangerous as she is reported to be on TSS. But her list of opponents' records seemed to be fair somewhat dismal. I really don't know who's out there as far as her weight class. I've also seen some video of Kaliesha West in training. I'm a believer. [/B]