Yuriorkis Gamboa is preparing for the fight of his life next weekend.
Ask 50 Cent and he'll tell you that the Cuban boxer is more than ready to face undefeated WBO Lightweight champion Terence Crawford at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha, Neb., on June 28. That's because Gamboa has had the opportunity to train with one of boxing's all-time greats, Floyd Mayweather Sr. So don't expect Gamboa to drop his gloves and taunt his opponents as he's done in the past.
“He's had the opportunity to work with Floyd Mayweather Sr. on defensive styles and different things,” 50, whose SMS Promotions handles Gamboa's fights, told BET.com. “There are a lot of different things that you'll see from his performance coming up that people haven't seen him do in the past. I can't wait to see it 'cause I know they're not actually prepared for it.”
Fif has seen Gamboa’s growth firsthand. He recruited Gamboa in 2012 at the advice of Floyd Mayweather Jr., when the two were pegged to launch TMT promotions together. However, when the friends severed ties before the company launched, 50 launched his own SMS Promotions and added Gamboa to the roster. This bout pits Gamboa (23-0, 16 knockouts) against Crawford, who sports an identical record.
“They are looking at the two fighters' records and feeling like they are identical,” 50 explained. “But they are going find out the difference between what Gamboa had to go through prior to that, like him being a gold medalist and winning more than 400 amateur fights. He has a lot of experience.”
Fif is so confident in his fighter's ability that the bout will take place in Crawford’s hometown of Omaha, the first boxing match the city has hosted in 42 years. (Joe Frazier scored a fifth-round TKO victory over Ron Stander in Omaha back in May 1972).
“Home court in a basketball game is something different. The crowds, you feel the energy here and all that,” Fif said. “In the sport of boxing, being at home is not a luxury. You bring in more people, you are at the local gym, and you are approaching it as if it were a fight you regularly trained for and not looking at it like this is the biggest fight of your life.”
This marks Gamboa's first fight since scoring a unanimous decision win over Darley Perez last June. Catch Crawford versus Gamboa on HBO Boxing After Dark, at 10 p.m. on Saturday, June 28.
Get ready for the BET Experience, featuring Mary J. Blige, Maxwell, Jill Scott, A$AP Rocky, Rick Ross and many more. Click here for more details and info on how to purchase tickets.
BET.com is your #1 source for Black celebrity news, photos, exclusive videos and all the latest in the world of hip hop and R&B music.
Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.
(Photo: Johnny Louis/WENN.com)