Chris Algieri braced for return against Mikkel LesPierre, targets big fights at 140 pounds

Former WBO junior welterweight titleholder Chris Algieri will finish a 26-month hiatus when he returns in opposition to former world title challenger Mikkel LesPierre in a scheduled 10-round contest on the Madison Sq. Backyard Theater on Tuesday.

Algieri (24-3, 9 knockouts) is keen to get again within the ring in opposition to his fellow New Yorker for the 143-pound catchweight bout.

“I feel it’s an ideal matchup,” Algieri instructed The Ring. “This isn’t a comeback for me, it’s solely a comeback as a result of I’ve been out of the ring, my mindset has not modified. I’m a fighter, a present high man, and I’m seeking to be a world champion once more.”

The 37-year-old from Huntington, New York, may have sought a better return following an prolonged absence however he wished to check himself.

“I didn’t need a simple comeback,” stated Algieri, who has shared a hoop with Ruslan Provodnikov (SD 12), Manny Pacquiao (L UD 12), Amir Khan (L UD 12) and Errol Spence Jr. (L TKO 5). “I wasn’t searching for a steppingstone to simply get again in there. I don’t really feel prefer it has been [over two years since I last fought] as a result of I stayed within the health club, and with the pandemic, everybody has been off a 12 months. I really feel like that was a takeaway 12 months, none of us may prepare, particularly the New York guys, the gyms had been closed for a lot longer than they wanted to be.

“I’ve stayed within the health club and had much more sparring. My final comeback, I wasn’t sparring or coaching the best way I used to be this time. For me, I don’t really feel like I’ve been out of the ring that lengthy.”

Algieri (proper) at battle with Ruslan Provodnikov. Picture by Naoki Fukuda

Algieri is aware of LesPierre very effectively and believes this opponent will present him with the requisite check.

“I’ve commentated on a number of of his current fights,” stated Algieri. “He’s very gifted. He was a extremely good novice, he’s a great professional, he’s fought for a world title in opposition to [former WBO 140-pound titlist] Maurice Hooker. He not too long ago fought one other former [two-weight] world champion Jose Pedraza.

“His nickname is ‘Slikk Mikk’ and there’s a motive for that: He’s a slick southpaw, he has lengthy arms, he has a great sharp jab, he’s a great counterpuncher, he’s very powerful, which is one thing he didn’t have to indicate early in his profession however has proven in his previous couple of fights, particularly with Hooker. He’s in there to do rounds and he’s powerful and searching for methods to win. He’s received some good pop, he’s received slick higher physique motion, however he doesn’t transfer his toes an entire lot.

“I’ve the dimensions benefit, I’ve lengthy arms too, I contemplate myself extra of a quantity puncher than he’s, and I feel I’ve underestimated energy at 140. I feel my energy goes to indicate extra on this struggle than folks might count on.”

Algieri, who has been coaching between New York and Florida, is aware of that a formidable win may catapult him into massive fights at 140 kilos.

“I’m right here to make a press release and to look down the street to larger and higher issues,” he stated.

“[LesPierre’s] solely losses are to high guys, Hooker and Pedraza. I want to win and do it impressively and do it higher than these guys did. [I want to] make a press release that that is the load class I’m going to marketing campaign in and I deserve these greater fights.”

Algieri, nevertheless, stopped wanting calling out anybody specifically.

“The panorama adjustments so shortly that getting your mindset prepared for one struggle or eyeing somebody doesn’t normally work out that manner,” he stated. “I’ve by no means picked my opponents. I’ve by no means been the sort of man who says I wish to struggle this man and that struggle occurs. It’s not who I’m. I’m a prizefighter… you inform me who, I ask how a lot after which we struggle. That’s the mindset I’ve at this stage. Once you maintain profitable, good issues occur and that’s been the story of my entire profession.”

LesPierre turned skilled in 2012. The Brooklyn resident’s report stands at 22-2-1 (10 KOs).


Questions and/or feedback will be despatched to Anson at [email protected] and you’ll observe him on Twitter @AnsonWainwright


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