There was none of this on Wednesday, as Todd DuBoef kept Brandon Rios (left) and Richard Abril separate during the final press conference ahead of their Saturday clash. (Chris Farina)
“No pose!” Top Rank president Todd DuBoef commanded at the end of the the final press conference for the Brandon Rios-Richard Abril scrap which unfolds at the Mandalay Bay on Saturday night.
DuBoef, at the Mandalay, didn't want to risk a premature explosion, in which the hot-blooded Rios and his Cuban-born foe risked getting banged up or nicked before fight night.
They'd already butted heads on March 5 in Miami, when Abril crashed a presser hyping the since original pairing of Rios-Gamboa, and Rios shoved Abril Monday at the LA pose-off, so that they have no love for each other is already well established.
DuBoef spoke first and said he was psyched that the scrap will take place in the arena which is set up for a 6,000 seat maximum.
Rios said he'd keep it civil, and not talk smack. Then he talked smack..He said Abril will run on fight night, and that he doubts Abril will trade. “I know he's going to run,” he said, and he will be ready for that. He said his Dec. 3 NY weight miss was a fluke, and that he is on weight. “You can see my face, I'm happy again, I got color, I'm Brandon Rios again,” he said. He said he's a lion inside and outside the ring. He asked all to buy the card, or show up, because the card is loaded with warriors. He asked watchers to party for him after he wins the title, which is the interim WBA lightweight crown.
DuBoef spoke about the strange leadup to fight night. He talked about Rios losing his crown on the scale Dec. 3, and Yuriorkis Gamboa jumping ship from the Rios beef. He said just because Abril isn't well known that doesn't mean he isn't a worthy challenger.
Abril, in Spanish, said before Rios spoke he felt good and trained hard. He told Rios that he isn't afraid of him, and that he looked for the fight. Rios talks smack because he is just 50% Mexican, and 50% American, Abril said. A fighter has to be nice outside the ring and a bull inside, he opined. Anyone who talks stupid, he said, he will shut up.
Robert Garcia at the mike said Rios is in great shape, and is always at the gym.
DuBoef said that Rios made him think of Karen Carpenter right before his Dec. 3 fight with John Murray.
DuBoef introduced HBO's West Coast guy, Tony Walker. He said “we definitely have a winner” with the Rios-Abril scrap, and the Juan Manuel Marquez-Sergey Fedchenko tussle, which unfolds in Mexico. He noted that the show is available on pay-per-view, for $44.95.
DuBoef said he likes the Mauricio Herrera-Mike Alvarado junior welter scrap. Herrera (18-1) said Alvarado (32-0) is tough and he expects a good fight. “We're gonna do it,” he said. Alvarado, DuBoef said, has always been a man, always fought ballsy and fan-friendly. Alvarado, out of Colorado, said he trained hard, in one of the best camps he ever had. “I'm a warrior, I do what I do to win the fight,” he said.
DuBoef said from 5:30-6 PM West Coast time, they will do a live preview show, from the arena, which is a departure from the norm.
Filipino-born Mercito Gesta lightweight, now 24-0, will face Oscar Cuero (15-7) on the undercard in Vegas. He said he will hopefully give his best on Saturday.
Readers, think Fedchenko or Abril could spring an upset?