Douglin is trained by his mother, Saphya.
Editorial by John Archibald, Resolution Sports
Junior Middleweight Facing Another Undefeated Fighter in Jermell Charlo
One would think that following a win over then undefeated Steven Martinez (12-1, 10 KOs) this past January on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights, Denis “Da Momma’s Boy” Douglin (14-1, 8 KOs) would take a somewhat easier bout after making such a statement, but that is just not his style. Douglin continues to defy common boxing mentalities on his mission to win a world title, and the former National Golden Gloves Champion will again lock up with an undefeated fighter when he meets Jermell Charlo (17-0, 8 KOs) on June 23rd on the undercard of Victor Ortiz vs. Josesito Lopez in Los Angeles.
“I want to be the best. You’re not going to be the best fighting a bunch of tomato cans, fighting a bunch of people who are not pushing you to the limit and helping you reach a new level,” Douglin stated. “We just want to keep working for a title. That means we’ll keep fighting people who are rated higher than me and just try to get to the top to go for that title. Jermell Charlo wanted to fight us, and I’ll fight anybody above me. Literally, I’ll fight anybody, and I’m willing to actually prove it.”
Douglin, who is promoted by DiBella Entertainment and advised by the ever-powerful Al Haymon, was originally slated to meet Charlo on the undercard of the Floyd Mayweather vs. Miguel Cotto World Championship Fight on Cinco de Mayo in Las Vegas, but that bout was eventually removed from the card.
“Jermell Charlo is a name that was thrown at me before, and I said yes, but he said no,” Douglin reflected. “So I guess he finally said yes, and they offered it to me again. I won’t turn down any fight. Whoever they throw at me, I’ll say yes and then I’ll research to see how his style matches up with me. I want to be a fighter who can make adjustments, can change his style to fight anybody. So as soon as he said yes, I said ‘let’s do it.’ As far as boxing goes, he is pretty good, but I’m going to be better that night.”
As to why Charlo accepted this fight the second time it was offered, Douglin says that the Houston boxer was virtually left with no choice.
“To be honest with you, I think we backed him into a corner,” he remarked. “I don’t think he wants to take the fight with me now. I guess they told him I’m the only opponent who they can offer him right now, and he wants to keep fighting. Ideally, when you look at it from a business standpoint, it’s not the smartest move for either one of us. He’s 17-0, I’m 14-1. He knows how tough I am, I know how tough he is, and it’s not a big, big money fight. We’re on Showtime Extreme, but it’s not like we’re making a big amount of money. So business-wise, it’s not the greatest fight.”
The exact reasons Douglin stated are why you almost never see a young prospect do what he is doing. Including the Charlo bout, the last three opponents of the 24-year-old New Jersey native have fought in a combined 40 contests. Of those three boxers, two were undefeated and the other had just two losses (Philip McCants). Douglin explained why he has decided to travel the route virtually never taken in the game of boxing.
“I’m willing to take the risk now and worry about the business standpoint afterwards,” he commented. “After I prove myself to everybody and make it where it where they can’t ignore me, I know I’m going to make bigger money. I’d rather do that than take the easy fights now, and then the first time I get the opportunity to make big money, lose the fight and have to start all over again. I’d rather take the hard fights now and work my way up to where I truly earn those money fights. I want to do it that way.”
Many fighters say the same things that Douglin is saying, but the reality is most never back up those words.
“When you look at 95% of fighters, they all say the same thing: ‘I want to fight the best, I want to beat the best, I want to fight this guy.’ Then they call out champions of the weight classes, but your last opponent was 20-20!” Douglin laughed. “You don’t want to fight the best. You just want that big money fight. A lot of people are in it only for the money. Of course, money is important, but I’m in this to show I’m the best at 154 and I’ll prove it. I’ll fight whoever I have to fight and whoever they put in front of me.
“I’m proving that I actually put my money where my mouth is, showing that I’m willing to back up any statement I make. I want to fight the best. Steven (Martinez) was a great fighter. He fought after our fight and won, and I’m sure he’ll continue winning and proving that he’s a great fighter. Jermell Charlo is a great fighter – 17-0, Golden Boy signed, great amateur background. After I beat him, I’m sure he’ll continue winning. I’m just showing that I’m willing to fight whoever, and I’m going to keep winning.”
Douglin vs. Charlo is currently slated to air on Showtime Extreme just before the Oriz vs. Lopez broadcast switches over to Showtime for a tripleheader event. However, the opening bout on the main card is scheduled to feature heavyweight Chris Arreola, who currently does not have an opponent. If no one is found to fight him on short notice, the Douglin vs. Charlo pairing will likely be moved onto the feature portion of the card on Showtime.