22-year-old light-middleweight, Justin DeLoach of Augusta, Georgia scored a KO of The Year candidate in his last win, a 4th-round KO over the previously unbeaten Dillon Cook on March 25th. A devastating right hand to the head put Cook down and out in shocking fashion and “The Chosen One,” as the 14-1(8) DeLoach is known says the win takes him to “another level.”
Trained by former champion Paul “The Punisher” Williams, DeLoach says a bond exists between he and the talented southpaw who was sadly left paralysed from the waist down due to a motorbike crash in 2012, and that as a duo, the world title will be won.
Here the 6’1-inch 154-pounder speaks exclusively with Boxing News:
Q: You scored an awesome one-punch KO over Dillon Cook in your last fight. Many people have called the right hand KO you scored a potential KO of the Year.
Justin DeLoach: “Yes, sir, it was a perfectly timed punch. Going against an undefeated fighter, in his hometown, I knew I had to rise to the occasion, to make my stamp on the sport. I thank Dillon for fighting me, it was a blessing for me, and I think I proved now that I’m at a different level.”
Q: This is perhaps a silly question, but have you ever scored a more destructive KO in your entire career?
J.D: “Actually, my last fight [but-one], in October (a KO over Todd Manuel) was similar. Well, not similar, but it kind of put me in the same frame of mind. That one was also a nice KO win.”
Q: Fans are hungry to see more of you, have you any idea when your next fight may be?
J.D: “Yes, sir. Actually, I am looking at the end of April, the beginning of May. I was just doing my roadwork just now, but I stopped because I want to speak with y’all. We’re working on my next fight now. Hopefully it won’t be too long in coming.”
Q: Paul Williams, who is tall like you and threw a lot of punches a round like you – do you think he saw similarities between the two of you, and that is why he became your trainer?
J.D: “Oh, yes sir. Definitely. We coming from the same town and all, we’re connected. But it was when we sat down and had a heart to heart – him seeing all he has and overcoming, and me doing the same – it was preordained from God. I’ve been [working] with him since January and we make a great team.”
Q: You are tall for a 154-pound fighter, just as Paul was. Will you move up one day?
J.D: “Actually, we have plans for me to go down to 147. I make 154 so easily. I actually made my debut at 147. I’m definitely still young and I have plenty to learn.”
Q: What happened in the only loss you suffered, against Cesar Vila of New York, who scored a TKO over you in February of last year?
J.D: “He actually got in touch with me on social media, and he told me I was the toughest guy he ever fought. I was dominating that fight, and we scored double knockdowns – I caught him and he caught me at the same time. Being a young fighter without experience at the time, I got up too quick, without my legs being underneath me, and, being a rookie at the time, I made that mistake. I’ve definitely learned from that. I honestly feel I’ve moved on from that [loss[ but at the same time, I’d love a rematch.”
Q: How is it working with the great Paul Williams?
J.D: “It’s great, he’s already taught me a lot. I’m hoping, we are hoping, that next year, we’ll be looking at major titles. I know I still have lots to learn, but Paul is taking me to that different class. The thing about me is – and it‘s the same with Paul – I want to be the people’s champion. What I do, I do for y’all; I want to entertain. That’s the way we are.”