Samuel won't go merely for KO

Boxing

March 09, 2006|By LEM SATTERFIELD | LEM SATTERFIELD,SUN REPORTER

Baltimore's Tyrell Samuel will be involved in his first scheduled six-rounder when he fights at Glen Burnie's Michael's Eighth Avenue in tonight's junior lightweight co-main event against Fred Fleming of Cincinnati.

If Samuel's three previous bouts are any indication, Fleming isn't likely to see the final round. Trained by former junior middleweight world champion Vincent Pettway, Samuel, 23, is 5-0 with three consecutive knockouts.

A fan favorite at Michael's, Samuel is returning to the site of his last fight, when he beat New York's Raul Rivera in four rounds July 16. So Samuel knows he'll be expected to provide an explosive evening, more than likely in the form of a stoppage.

Samuel won't go out recklessly for a knockout, but if there's an opening, Fleming likely will get flattened.

"The crowds at Michael's are original, like no other place you'll ever fight. I know the first time I land a clean punch, there'll be oohs and aahs, and you'll feel the rush and want to go for the knockout," Samuel said. "But you have to suppress the urge to abandon your game plan and go strictly for a knockout. You have to continue to execute until the right opportunity presents itself."

Pettway believes Fleming (0-2) is better than his record indicates, and agrees that Samuel should try to stick and move as much as to drop his rival on his backside.

"Tyrell's knockouts have been a combination of sitting down on his punches more and throwing punches in bunches. He's a boxer/puncher," said Pettway, who co-manages Samuel with legendary trainer Mack Lewis, the man who guided Pettway to his championship.

"So a lot of times when you're a busy puncher, more than likely you can land to the point where the punches discombobulate your opponent, or the referee is going to say he's seen enough and he's going to stop the fight."

Samuel's fight will precede that of Baltimore junior middleweight Maxell Taylor (12-2, five knockouts), a left-hander who will end a nearly eight-month layoff against an opponent to be determined.

Taylor, 21, will be getting back in the ring for the first time since July 22, when he lost an eight-round decision to California's Ahmed Kaddour in a fight that was televised on Showtime.

lem.satterfield@baltsun.com

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