Jason Gavern, 37, is used to both a role as the underdog and of receiving short notice for his fights. With just over a week’s notice given before his August 16th bout Vs. unbeaten KO artist Deontay Wilder, Gavern, 25-16-4(11) realises he is a huge outsider once again.
But the fearless fighter last seen reaching the final of “Prizefighter” in London last November (beating James Toney along the way in the tournament) is ready to give his all against Wilder this Saturday.
Exactly how much notice did you get for this fight?
“I got the call on Thursday evening (August 7th), So I’ve had around a week’s notice. But this is nothing new to me; most of my fights throughout my whole career, I’ve had very little notice. But it’s the opportunity that this fight brings, that’s what’s good about this. Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to have been given the proper amount of time needed – the same time Wilder has had – but I’m a journeyman, and everything I do is basically out of my own pocket. Me at 100-percent against Wilder at 100-percent: I’d love to see what would happen. As it is, I’ll give my all as I always do and put on a show for the fans.”
You are a guy who is always in the gym…..
“Yeah, in one way or another. There is a big difference between being in shape and being in boxing shape, but yeah, I’ve been in the gym. I was also in camp with Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua, in Bolton. I sparred Tyson, obviously his fight got cancelled. We did around 15 to 20-rounds. I feel confident going into this fight [with Wilder], I have absolutely nothing to lose and he has everything to lose.”
From what you’ve seen of him, how do you rate Wilder?
“Well, I’ve been in camp with him, and he definitely has great power. You know, he’s not 31-0 with 31 KO’s by accident! He is that good. He has everything any heavyweight would want: he moves well, he has height and athleticism and he has that power. Has he been tested? No, but that’s not his fault. He’s done his job and KO’d everyone [he’s fought]. He has a 100-percent KO ratio – who wouldn’t want that! I give him nothing but respect. But yeah, I’d love to see him taken the distance; I’d love to take him the distance. I want to make him earn his win. But put it this way, I will try and make it a fight. If I get KO’d in 20-seconds or if go the distance, no-one will be able to say I didn’t make a fight of it.”
You will go right at him from the start?
“My position is, he has Al Haymon and all that money behind him. Me, I don’t have a promoter or a manager, I pay for everything myself: my food, my training camp, everything. So my mindset is, when the bell rings, I’ll go right at him and get on his chest. I’m not gonna out-box the guy, he’s 6’8.” I’ll go straight to him and make it a fight.”
You did so well in “Prizefighter” last November, beating James Toney. Did you think you’d get calls for fights after that – yet you haven’t fought since?
“The thing is, when you’re losing fights, everyone wants to fight you. When you’re winning, no-one wants to take the risk. Imagine if I beat Wilder! Everything he’s worked for – and his next fight will be for the (WBC) world title – he will have to go back to the drawing board with. Again, this is all risk for him and I have nothing to lose. And I do have a history of having scored the occasional upset here and there! But as for Prizefighter, If I’d been given enough notice, I’d have breezed that competition. But if I had to lose to anyone, I’m glad it was to Michael Sprott, who is a good friend of mine and a real gentleman. But yeah, I did think I‘d get fights after that, but I haven‘t had a call for six months. I‘m hurting money-wise. That‘s why this fight [with Wilder] is such an opportunity for me.”
It would obviously be a real fairytale story if you managed to upset Wilder!
“I was a policeman for eight years and I gave it up to be a fighter. It’s been hard, with a lot of sacrifice from my family. But already, with what I’ve achieved, I’m living the dream. But to beat Wilder, oh, Lord, of course my life will never be the same and for the better. Look at Chris Algieri, he beats [Ruslan] Provodnikov and now he will earn millions against Manny Pacquiao. I’m in the same position with the Wilder fight.”