THE final press conference for the inaugural Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) on NBC show took place today at MGM Grand as fighters, announcers and executives spoke to the media ahead of their primetime network television debut on Saturday, March 7 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.
See below for what the participants had to say about the huge night of fights:
“This is such a beautiful card and such a beautiful fight. We’ve wanted this for a while and we’ve been waiting patiently.
“Robert is a great fighter, a multiple world champion and I’m a current world champion. I know the fans wanted me to step up in class and this is my chance to do that. You know what I’m about, it’s ‘KOs for life’.
“I’m just really excited and happy. I can’t wait to step on the scale tomorrow, re-hydrate and go to work.
“If my fight goes two, six or eight rounds – I’m looking for the knockout. I’m waiting for him to slip up and for me to deliver that one time blow.
“I am going to open up my mouth and say that I am coming to knock him out. I want to be the first fighter to ever knock out Robert ‘The Ghost’ Guerrero. I appreciate him for taking this fight and for all that he has done. I know he’s coming to fight and get this victory, and it’s my job to not let that happen.”
“My brain can’t compute how big of an opportunity this is for me. It’s a blessing and an honor to be on this big of a stage. There are many world champions that could have opened up this show. This is a beautiful card and I am honored to be the main event.
“This is what boxing needs. This stage is what is going to propel my career. We’re trying to bring back the golden generation.”
“This truly is a blessing. Being on this stage is incredible. I’m coming to fight. On Saturday night I’m ready to go.
“It’s a great day because you don’t need cable TV to watch boxing anymore.
“My last opponent was tough and I was dealing with some injuries but you have to be able to overcome and make adjustments. I got a little wild and just started slugging it out with him.
“There were doubters when I went to 147, people thought I was nuts. Every time people don’t think I can do something, I prove them wrong.
“If you live the lifestyle of a fighter; you should be able to fight regularly.
“I’m ready to go. I had a great training camp and worked very hard. It’s time to take care of business Saturday night. We did a lot of different work in training camp to prepare for this fight.
“Keith Thurman is talking about coming out and becoming the first person to knock me out. I like that type of challenge.
“[Keith] Thurman is very strong and has great lateral movement. He can box, fight on the inside. There are also a lot of flaws with his game and we are going to take advantage of his flaws.
“This fight card is incredible. The exposure that we are going to get is unprecedented. Not just the fight story but my back story as well, with what kind of men we are outside of the ring.
“Being out there talking to everybody and showing off, that’s just not me. So sometimes I’m not always in the public eye, because I’m more of a private man who takes care of his family. But I’m glad this stage will get my story and my wife’s story to the general public.
“Mentally the whole experience of what my wife went through makes me tougher. Watching her fight for her life, it makes me realize that I step into the ring because I love this sport.”
“I’ve been through a lot but I’m still here and my name has only gotten bigger, even through the bad times.
“Now we have ‘AB on NBC.’ I’m Mr. NBC, everybody is coming to see the AB Show.
“I’ll takeover whatever television channel I’m on, I don’t care if its Cartoon Network, I’m going to bring it.
“John Molina is a tough world class fighter, he wouldn’t be in this position if he wasn’t. He always beats the odds and comes out on the right side of the stick, but this is the time where he’s going to be on the bad end of the stick.
“We’re ready for a dog fight, it doesn’t matter how big the ring is. We’re not running from John Molina. I’m not scared of power.
“We’ll see Saturday night, I’m stopping John Molina and I’m putting my word on that.
“The preparation during this camp was great, I feel strong and ready. It’s going to be a great fight.
“At the end of the day if people say I haven’t looked my best because I haven’t stopped my opponents, but when you look at those fights I outclassed every opponent in front of me. As long as I keep winning, that’s what matters.
“John Molina is going to come to fight, but they all come to fight, he’s not going to beat me.
“The sky is the limit for me, I’m still young and I’ve done so much at a young age. I’m going to mature in the sport but at the end of the day I’m still me.”
JOHN MOLINA JNR.
“It’s an honor to be part of this show that will bring boxing back to the forefront. We’re well prepared and excited to be on this platform.
“It’s a great card with a can’t miss show and PBC and NBC is doing it right. I can’t wait to be a part of it and for that bell to ring March 7.
“Camp went well and we’re 110 percent ready to bring it. It’s a great card with a can’t miss show and PBC and NBC are doing it right. I can’t wait to be a part of it and for that bell to ring March 7.
‘This is going to be dogfight on Saturday night.
‘He’s the same Broner, he can say whatever he wants. He’s made his own bed with his comments and now he has to fight. His mind games that’s he trying to play won’t work.
“Once we get in the ring, the talking stops, two hands just like me.
“I’ve got the power and the skills to win this fight.
“Enjoy the show and I promise you guys fireworks.”
“I’ve been a three-time world champion and I have Arturo Reyes in front of me. It’s with honor and please and excitement to be fighting on NBC.
“No disrespect to the other guys up here, but I plan to steal the show. I want to look good. I’ve stolen the show before and it’s going to happen again on Saturday night.
“I hope everyone tunes in Saturday night, everybody better watch out because Abner Mares is going to impress.
“Any of these fights could be main events, no matter the order, so I’m just happy to be a part of it. A lot of people are going to be tuning in so you have to fight to grab the attention of the viewers.
“It takes two to dance and it takes two to fight. When you have a fighter who is going to give you his all, it brings the best out of you. I’m fighting someone who’s never been knocked out and he’s going to bring the best Abner Mares out.
“I’m going to make it a spectacular fight and I’m definitely going for the knockout.”
ARTURO SANTOS REYES
“I’m happy to be on the card and I’m excited to be here around such great fighters.
“It’s going to be a great show and I’m looking forward to giving the fans their money’s worth.
“Abner Mares is a great fighter, but I don’t fear anybody. He better come to fight.
“We’re both Mexican warriors and Mexican Olympians, so you know there’s going to be fireworks in the ring and I just hope everyone in the arena and on TV enjoys.”
SUGAR RAY LEONARD, PBC on NBC Analyst and Legendary Boxer
“I’m just as excited as everyone else, because this is long overdue. Getting boxing back on primetime. These incredibly talented boxers know that this Saturday night is like a major audition and the fans will be the judges.
“I remember being in this position and It’s more than physical, it’s mental. These boxers have what it takes to be superstars. Saturday will be a great day for boxing.”
JON MILLER, President, Programming NBC Sports & NBCSN
“On behalf of NBC sports we’re exited to be here, we’re fortunate to have 22-time Emmy-award winner Sam Flood overseeing the event and an A-list group of on-air talent.
“I think America is ready to see boxing in primetime and Saturday you will see and hear an unbelievable event.
“We’re thrilled that these fighters and their great teams are part of the NBC family and we can’t wait to get going.”