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Lemieux: I’m going to knock O’Sullivan out cold

Image: Lemieux: I’m going to knock O’Sullivan out cold

By Allan Fox: David Lemieux (39-4, 33 KOs) is motivated to KO Gary ‘Spike’ O’Sullivan (28-2, 20 KOs) in their fight on September 15 to get a fight against either Saul Canelo Alvarez or a rematch against Gennady Golovkin. Lemieux says he’s now in the prime of his career at age 29, and he blames his recent loss to WBO middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders on nutritional issues that kept him from being his best last December.

Golden Boy is matching Lemieux and the 34-year-old O’Sullivan against each other in a high profile fight. The winner has a chance to possibly get the winner of the Canelo vs. Golovkin 2 fight. The loser will need to retool and slowly rebuild to eventually get a bigger fight. Given Lemieux’s age, he has more chances of coming back from a loss than O’Sullivan. However, Lemieux needs to make sure he wins this fight because he hasn’t looked good since his 3rd round knockout win over Curtis Stevens in March 2017.

O’Sullivan has been talking boldly about his chances of winning his fight against Lemieux. He likes his chances of beating the Canadian. O’Sullivan is fighting at a high level right now and he’s been impressive in winning his last six fights. O’Sullivan looked sharp in stopping Berlin Abreu, Antoine Douglas, Nick Quigley and Chancey Fields. The fight where O’Sullivan looked poor was his 7th round stoppage loss to Chris Eubank Jr. in 2015. Eubank Jr. used his speed and combinations to batter O’Sullivan until the referee had to step in and stop the contest in the 7th. Eubank Jr. didn’t do anything out of the ordinary in besting O’Sullivan. He just threw a lot of punches and forced him to cover up. Enough shots got through O’Sullivan’s guard to wear him down until the fight was halted.

“They expect a lot from me,” Lemieux said to Yahoo Sports News. “I know what I’m worth. I know what I bring to the table on September 15. It’s going to be a big victory. I’m in good shape. I’m coming for a victory. I’m coming for big names. The next fight is O’Sullivan, and then we’re heading for the real deal. I’m staying at middleweight. They’re some things I changed with my nutritional ways. I’m staying at middleweight and I’m going to be a middleweight for the rest of my career hopefully. I’m only making a few adjustments. That’s the whole goal of this fight,” Lemieux said.

Lemieux is talking now about how he believes he’ll be able to stay at middleweight, but that’s easier said than done. Lemieux has always been a huge middleweight in terms of his weight. He’s 5’9 ½”, which is an inch and a half taller than the 5’8” Canelo and he has the same reach. The difference between the two is Lemieux is having problems making the weight, and those problems are likely going to continue.

”I want to do a great against O’Sullivan,” Lemieux said. “I’m very confident of my abilities that this fight isn’t going to be my last, and then I’m ready for Canelo. I’m ready for my rematch against Golovkin. The big names are there and I’m ready to take them. Styles make fights. He has a different style than me. Saunders had a different approach with me than he did with O’Sullivan. I had my issues with the Saunders’ fight. That’s been in the past now and it’s been fixed,” Lemieux said.

Lemieux is going to need to look really good against O’Sullivan for him to be ready for Canelo. The same goes for O’Sullivan in beating Lemieux. He’s going to have to make it look easy for him to be viewed as a good option for Canelo Alvarez to fight. Golden Boy Promotions CEO Oscar De La Hoya said as much. He’s not going to have Canelo fight Lemieux or O’Sullivan next if they look bad in winning this fight. It would be better for Golden Boy to aim lower for the winner of that fight. Instead of putting O’Sullivan or Lemieux in with Canelo, they should aim to have him fight the winner of the Daniel Jacobs vs. Sergiy Derevyanchenko fight or the winner of the Saunders vs. Demetrius Andrade clash. Those would be a great testing ground for Lemieux or O’Sullivan. If they can beat those types of fighters, then they would have enough cache to be a good option for Canelo. GGG isn’t going to bother with O’Sullivan or Lemieux, because those guys would do nothing for his career at this point. Golovkin needs to stay in the fast lane after he deals with Canelo by looking to face Saunders, Andrade, Daniel Jacobs, Jermall Charlo, Ryota Murata and Sergiu Derevyanchenko.

“We’re studying O’Sullivan very closely in my camp,” Lemieux said. “We know what he brings to the table. I’m stronger and better looking and I’m the better fighter, and that’s what I bring to the table on September 15. It would require tremendous training and preparation to beat a guy like Golovkin, and that’s what I want to do. The interesting thing is that all these years have passed, and I’m now reaching my peak. Back when I fought Golovkin, he was at his peak. So the difference in the rematch is Lemieux is at his peak, and knowing what he’s facing against Golovkin, where he’s standing, that would be the difference. I’m more experienced. Lemieux is at his peak,” Lemieux said.

Lemieux is NOT in his peak any longer. He’s clearly on the downside of his career, and the reason for that is he can no longer make 160 without great struggle. If Lemieux was taller, it would be an easy thing for him o move up to super middleweight and go after one of the belts in that division. He can’t do that because 5’9” fighters are too small for the 168 pound weight class. Just as 5’8” fighters are too small for the middleweight division. We saw that in Canelo being out-boxed by the taller Golovkin. Canelo didn’t have the arm length to beat Golovkin. It’ll only get worse for Canelo when he starts facing the really tall middleweights like Andrade, Charlo, Jacobs and Saunders. Those guys will out-box Canelo in the same way.

”I’m coming in expecting everything,” Lemieux said. “I don’t think he’s going to change his style much. He’s a strong fighter, he’s a powerful guy, but he’s very wide. I’m very short and explosive. I’m going to use all my abilities and beat his abilities. I think I’m going to come much better than him in this fight. I’m well prepared. I think he’s going to come and try and brawl with me, but if he does, ouch. Uppercuts, right hooks, right hands, jabs, body shots, everything is going to be beautiful,” Lemieux said when asked what he plans on doing when he gets him inside the ring.

Lemieux has a pretty good chin, but his ability to take body shots is his weakness. Golovkin hurt Lemieux with body shots in their fight in 2015. O’Sullivan has as much punching power as GGG, but he doesn’t place his punches nearly as well. If O’Sullivan can land body shots against Lemieux, he’ll likely stop him.

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