TSS PROSPECT WATCH: Antoine Douglas

He’s in with a fighter nicknamed “Cornflake,” so I had to wonder, first, what Antoine Douglas thought about that.

The DC-born hitter, who fights in the feature scrap on ShoBox tomorrow (Friday) told me that beyond knowing that the reference is to a cereal, he doesn’t quite know what to make of the tag. “It could derive from anything,” the 16-0-1 boxer, who boasts ten KOs, told me, quite rightly.

He’s more solid on his ID as a boxer. “Some would say I’m a boxer-puncher, but I just consider myself a fighter. Depending upon what an opponent has, I may adjust the intensity. But I’m not a one-trick pony!” (That phrase cracked me up. It’s not in use as much as in decades past, and the employance told me that maybe this Douglas is something of an old soul.)

Lamanna (16-0 with 7 Kos; lives in NJ; age 23), Douglas says, is undefeated, he knows that, and a boxer, as most taller guys are. He’s checked out some tape, not to dissect, but to look for habits maybe he can exploit. “It’s not so much what he does, but more really what I do,” Douglas said. “And I do tend to throw every punch with knockout intensity.”

The WBA Fedalatin 160 crown will be up for grabs.

You will see that Douglas likes to feint you, and knows his hands are usually the faster ones. He pops the body, then the head, stays composed, likes to be first, moves pretty well, likes to maintain a distance. He typically stays smart, doesn’t over-flurry, leave himself open to counters, or get off balance.

Douglas beat Don Mouton, a journeyman sort, in his last outing, Nov. 13, in a UD6. The LaManna bout unfolds on Long Island, at The Space, in Westbury. Douglas scored a TKO6 over 18-14 Jose Medina in the scrap before the Mouton win, and he told me that is maybe his most meaningful win, because Medina was a tricky sort, and he had to adapt.

The Virgina resident, now 22, grew up in the southeast quadrant of DC

to a drug-addicted mom, who he didn’t see much of. His home was a wreck, and his bothers and sisters got separated, and was saved a bit when he was adopted by a cousin, along with a brother and sister. He found boxing at nine, or maybe boxing found him, and that helped immensely, giving him a focus, a goal, a structure. “I didn’t know it was an amateur sport,” he said.

I told Douglas I had a chat at a party with a woman who thought it wrong that young kids might look up to boxers, and latch on to the sport to emulate them. Douglas told me if I had asked him why he did boxing when he was nine, he might have said, ‘I don’t know, I like it.’ “Then I would have said I wanted to become a world champ. But as an adult, it is the only sport that imitates life. You can tell a lot about someone when they step in the ring. It doesn’t matter what they say, what they say on social media. Boxing teaches discipline, gives them that drive. A child in a boxing ring, they get hit, and they can quit. But if they fight thru the pain and the struggle they can take that and out that into their life, and they have no choice but to be successful!”

That woman at the party, I also told her that she should know that these boxers, they aren’t like us. Some people are built to be warriors, most of us are not. “I think most people have that, they just need to have it brought out of them,” Douglas told me.

I expect to see the warrior in full bloom on Showtime; and does he have a prediction?

“I have no prediction,” he said. “But I predict a beautiful victory!”

Here is the release which went out announcing the weights for the boxers, and some final quotes:

Antoine Douglas 159.8 – Thomas Lamanna 157.8
Ismael Barroso 134 – Issouf Kinda 133.6
(NABA & NABO Lightweight championship)

Jerry Odom 168 – Andrew Hernandez 167.8

Adam Lopez 120.4 – Pablo Cruz 120.8

Tommy Rainone 151 – Allen Litzau 151

Patty Alcivar 112.8 – Peggy Maerz 111.4

Dave Meloni 130 – Richard Bonds 133

Rich Neves 156 – Joshua Marks 151.2

Here’s what the fighters had to say before Thursday’s weigh-in:
Antoine Douglas:”The key is that I learn from my past experiences. Everything is a lesson. It’s only considered a loss if you don’t learn from it.

“I’m a disciplined fighter so once I enter the ring, the switch is on. That’s my comfort zone.

“If you look at my story, you see I’ve been through adversity all my life. Being in the ring is just another step for something I’m fighting for. I have people to fight for, burdens to get off my shoulder, my life is a fight. Once I step in the ring, it’s go time, I handle all my business there.

“I know what I worked on and what I prepared myself to do, so I don’t go in the ring expecting anything. If you go in expecting something, you may end up on the other side of that expectation, so I just do what I came to do, fight hard and win. If you go in expecting things, you’re going on a one-way path.

“Any man you get in the ring with, no matter how big or small, has the capability to do damage. I take on every fight with the same intensity and thought process; I can’t worry about anything else.”

Thomas LaManna: “People try to underestimate me based on my appearance but once they get hit, it’s another story. I know Douglas is taking me seriously since he knows me from the amateurs. It’s in his best interest to take me seriously.

“I know I’m good at what I do, and that’s boxing. During my first fights, if I got hit, everything went out the window and I was ready to rumble. My new trainer helped me control my mental strength while really using my reach, but the key is to stick to the game plan.

“This opportunity to fight on SHOWTIME was too good to pass up. I want everyone to see that I’m the real deal. The press has said a lot of positive things about me and I want to live up to that. The risk and reward factor about this fight is getting out and being seen. I know what I can do but not everyone has seen it yet.

“I love the fact you have two 23-year-old young undefeated fighters getting in the ring. As a boxing fan, I think that makes for a great fight. I’m fortunate to be a part of a card with two legit young fighters. We’re both where we’re at for a reason.

“I believe in my shots and power. Any shot I throw, I believe in it. My skills, talent and hard work are what brought me here.

Advance tickets for the event promoted by GH3 Promotions and Greg Cohen Promotions in association with David Schuster’s Winner Take All Productions, are priced at $150, $125, and $60 for general admission. Tickets are available at Ticketmaster.com, all Ticketmaster locations, thespacewestbury.com, The Space at Westbury Box Office at 516.283.5566 or by calling the GCP Office at 212.851.6425.

The event is sponsored by Foxwoods Resort Casino & Westbury Jeep, Chrysler, Dodge and Ram Dealership & Maxim Group.

GH3 Promotions features undefeated Middleweight Antoine Douglas, Super Middleweight’s Jerry Odom & Derrick Webster, undefeated Super Bantamweight Adam Lopez as well as Jr. Middleweight John Thompson, Featherweight Jorge Diaz, undefeated Super Bantamweight Qa’id Muhammad, Light Heavyweight Lavarn Harvell and undefeated Welterweight Jerrell Harris.

 

Check out this Q n A with Douglas, and more info on the TV portion of the card:

Q&A WITH TOP PROSPECT ANTOINE DOUGLAS

AS HE PREPARES TO FACE FELLOW UNBEATEN

THOMAS LAMANNA THIS FRIDAY ON SHOWTIME®

ShoBox: The New Generation LIVE on SHOWTIME

This Friday, March 13 at 10 p.m. ET/PT From Westbury, N.Y.

WESTBURY, N.Y. (March 9, 2015) – Undefeated middleweight Antoine Douglas (16-0-1, 10 KOs) is one of boxing’s fastest-rising prospects. Just 23 years old, the aggressive and exciting Washington, D.C., native will make his 2015 debut this Friday, March 13 against fellow unbeaten Thomas LaManna (16-0, 7 KOs) in the main event of ShoBox: The New Generation, live on SHOWTIME (10 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast).

Douglas, who is 1-0-1 in two ShoBox appearances, is looking to prove that he’s earned the moniker “Action” when he faces an opponent who – like himself – has never lost or touched the canvas. More importantly, he’s aiming to continue to erase any doubt about his future as a contender at 160 pounds. Douglas has won two in a row since boxing a hard-fought 10-round majority draw with former world title challenger Michel Soro (23-1-1 going in) last July 25 on ShoBox.

Here’s what Douglas had to say as he prepares for a breakout 2015:

How would you say your career is going?

“My career is going great so far. I am very satisfied with the pace of my career. I’m right where we want to be and in position for a big year.”

Neither one of you has been knocked down as a professional. Do you expect that to change on March 13?

“I really don’t expect anything going into a fight. I just want to put on a great show and put on a great fight. Give it my all.”

You’ve faced the tougher opposition as a pro. How do you stay focused and not look past an opponent?

“This is the sport of boxing and one punch can change any fight. Any fighter has the capability of hurting me so I don’t overlook anyone. LaManna is undefeated. He’s never lost, so I can’t look past him. Anything can happen in there.”

What do you know about LaManna and what kind of fight do you expect?

“I know that he’s tall and has a long reach. I really don’t know what to expect. I know that he tends to lock up to try to stay in a defensive position. I need to take advantage of that by going on the offensive.”

After what you’ve overcome as a youngster, do you consider yourself a survivor? Did boxing save you?

“I wouldn’t consider myself just a survivor. I would consider myself a fighter. I had a lot to fight for in my youth. Boxing helped me get through my issues. It provided me with instruction and discipline. Around the age of 14 I really took control of my life and became a man. I felt like I needed to treat myself as a man.

“When I was in a foster home at 14, my two guardians split up and I was in a position where I needed to make a decision to choose which path to go down. I wouldn’t be in the position I am in today if I didn’t make the decision I made. There weren’t people around me to point me in the right direction, I was on my own. If there were people that were supportive of me, I wasn’t expecting it. I was in the position that I was making the decision solely for myself.”

Getting serious here – your mother was in and out of your life growing up. What keeps you so loyal to her after everything that you’ve been through?

“I understand the fact that everyone goes through things in their life. It’s easy to tell them what they should do. It takes a lot to put your pride aside to be considerate of what people are going through. Too many people put themselves first over others. I took a step back and realized that everything happens for a reason and look how I turned out today. My mother and I have a great relationship now because I was understanding of her situation and didn’t take anything she did intentionally or think that it was directed towards me.”

What did you learn from your last ShoBox fight versus Soro)?. Do you view it as a positive or negative?

“I view the fight with Soro as a positive. In that fight I got down in weight, the smallest I have been in a while. I was at 155 instead of my usual weight of 160. Shedding the pounds really had a big impact on the fight and I realized I am a middleweight and feel comfortable at 160.’’

That the Soro fight was called a majority draw — was that a disappointment for you? How did you learn from that?

“It was a great disappointment for me to get a draw, but we know now not to go any smaller than 160. That’s the main thing we learned in that fight. There is such a thing as being too disciplined. People noticed how skinny I was for that fight, but being a disciplined fighter I was determined to make weight. A lot of opponents wouldn’t have taken that fight but it was an opportunity that I wanted to take advantage of. I thought it was a good decision at the time, but I learned a valuable lesson.”

You knocked a guy’s tooth out in your first ShoBox fight (Jan. 17, 2014, versus Marquis Davis) and your mom stole the show in your last appearance. What do you have in store for viewers on March 13?

“I mean, I’m just planning for a great fight. That’s all I can guarantee. I’m not one for superstitions [Friday The 13th]. I can just guarantee it will be a great fight.”

What is your biggest strength? Are you looking for the knockout or do you believe you can go 10 rounds and get the victory that way? “I believe I can bang for 10 rounds, but that all depends on the opponent. Some guys are strong enough who can go the full 10 rounds. I go in and try to inflict the most amount of damage from the opening bell. My biggest strength is my will and determination. There’s never a moment where I want to give up. Even if I get hurt in the ring, I won’t succumb to the fighter. Those are the thoughts that go through my head.”

Jerry Odom is also on this card and you both are from the DC area. You have stated that you two are like roommates. What does it mean to have him on the card with you?

“It means a lot for me. We come from similar humble beginnings and for us to be on the same card is historic for us. We both carry the same common goal and we have a lot that we are fighting for. Being able to do this on such a big stage on SHOWTIME and prove all the naysayers wrong means the world to us. It makes it that much more worth it and fulfilling for us, especially if we both get the victory.”

Your prediction?

“I predict a victory. I have trained and worked very hard for this and am ready to put on a show.”

# # #

In the co-feature, unbeaten southpaw Ismael Barroso (16-0-2, 15 KOs), of El Tigre, Venezuela, will shoot for his 13th consecutive victory when he faces Issouf “Volcano” Kinda (17-2, 7 KOs), of Bronx, N.Y., in a 10-round scrap for the NABO Lightweight Title. In an eight-round featured bout, once-beaten Jerry “The King’s Son” Odom (12-1, 1 NC, 11 KOs), of Washington D.C., will try and avenge his lone loss when he takes on undefeated Andrew “Hurricane” Hernandez (8-0-1, 1 ND, 1 KO) of Phoenix, Ariz., in a super middleweight rematch. In the opening bout, Adam Lopez (9-0, 4 KOs), of San Antonio, and Houston’s Pablo Cruz (11-0, 3 KOs) clash in an eight-round battle of Lone Star State super bantamweights.

Advance tickets for the event promoted by GH3 Promotions and Greg Cohen Promotions in association with David Schuster’s Winner Take All Productions, are priced at $150, $125, and $60 for general admission. Tickets are available at Ticketmaster.com, all Ticketmaster locations, thespacewestbury.com, The Space at Westbury Box Office at 516.283.5566 or by calling the GCP Office at 212.851.6425.

The event is sponsored by Foxwoods Resort Casino & Westbury Jeep, Chrysler, Dodge and Ram Dealership & Maxim Group.

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