Richard Torrez: Anthony Joshua needs to train me to prepare for the Oleksandr Usyk rematch | boxing news

Olympic silver medalist Richard Torrez insists Anthony Joshua needs to bring him in as a sparring partner to prepare for his second fight with Oleksandr Usyk.

Before Roberto Zavala Jr boxing on the undercard of Arnold Barboza Jr vs Daniel Zorrilla this Friday night live on sky sportsTorrez has pointed out that his compact, high-intensity southpaw style would be the ideal setup for a rematch with Usyk.

“I was expecting Anthony Joshua to hit me for training because I have an Usyk style. What happens is what happens, I haven’t gotten that call,” he said. sky sports.

“If any of the big heavyweights want to train me or want to take a look at me, I’m more than willing and more than obligated to go and do it.”

Torrez’s experiences as an amateur have conditioned him for professional sports. Watch him fight live on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Action from 1am this Saturday morning. (Photo: AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

There aren’t many fast southpaw heavyweights to match Usyk’s dimensions, but Torrez is one of them. “We are few and far between,” the American said, acknowledging the scale of the task facing Joshua.

“Usyk’s movement, his lateral movement, his feints, all of that, is unparalleled right now,” Torrez said.

“I think the shot that Anthony Joshua has is to let his punches go. He really has to let those punches go and he’s got the shots, he’s got the power. Anthony Joshua will always have that power. If he lands, it’s going to hurt.” And I think by continuing to hit him and having more combinations, I think it’s going to be an interesting fight. Honestly, right now I’m leaning towards Usyk.”

Usyk went from cruiserweight, where he was the undisputed champion, to beat Joshua to win the IBF, WBA and WBO unified titles. For Torrez, that proved that smaller heavyweights can still rise to the top of the division.

“I’m here to show the same thing. Everybody’s always talking about how I’m a smaller heavyweight, everybody’s talking about why I didn’t go to cruiserweight. I mean Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Mike Tyson, all the greats, all the legends. , they’re my size,” Torrez said.

“I think people look at a huge guy and say they’re heavyweights now. That’s all heavyweights can be, that’s all heavyweights will be now, it’s kind of 6-foot-10, 300 pounds. It’s as expected, I’m still here. I’m still going to do a scene and I’m grateful to Usyk for showing that and I can’t wait to put the nail in the coffin.”

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Oleksandr Usyk proved that a smaller heavyweight can still take down the best in the division

Torrez resisted any pressure to lose weight. “I’m an Olympic silver medalist,” she said. “If I can be as successful as a super heavyweight, as a heavyweight, I will stay there.

“And everybody wants to be the heavyweight champion of the world.”

Torrez secured that Olympic silver medal after a super heavyweight final in which he had to face his psychological demons as well as the towering Bakhodir Jalolov.

The formidable Uzbek is a 6-foot-7 power puncher with all-round boxing skills who was the clear favorite in Tokyo and is already a world championship gold medalist. Torrez had boxed him three years earlier and suffered a crushing knockout loss, footage of which went viral on social media.

The young American showed courage in the Olympic final, fighting Jalolov using his own power and skill as he lost a points decision in what was nonetheless a creditable effort. “I was never there to take second place. I was never there to not win everything,” he said. “I came this close. Honestly, that’s why I’m still so motivated.”

“I’ve been in the bottom of boxing. I’ve been in a viral video of me getting knocked out. I got knockout of the year and I was the one that got knocked out,” Torrez continued.

Richard Torrez faces Bakhodir Jalolov in the Olympic final.  (Photo: Adam Davy/PA Archive/PA Images)
Richard Torrez faces Bakhodir Jalolov in the Olympic final. (Photo: Adam Davy/PA Archive/PA Images)

“I have been at the lowest point in boxing and I am still here. I was able to come back and I was able to do something for myself and I was able to show that I am destined to be in the heavyweight division.

“So if people aren’t scared of me, they should be. Because I’ve been to the bottom and I’m back and I’m here to stay. I want everyone to know that you can come back from the dips and you can come back from the flops. Everybody he always says it’s not about if you get knocked out, it’s about getting back up. Sometimes you don’t get up. And I’m still here and I’m back and I’m here to stay.”

Torrez’s Olympic silver medal eventually led to him signing a professional contract with American promotional powerhouse Top Rank. He made his pro debut in March, stopping Allen Melson in two incident-packed rounds.

Richard Torrez Jr. of the United States, right, exchanges blows with Cuba's Dainier Pero during their men's super heavyweight boxing match over 91kg at the 2020 Summer Olympics on Sunday, August 1, 2020. 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.  (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
Richard Torrez is no stranger to action, here he won a thrilling Olympic quarter-final against Cuban Dainier Pero. (Photo: AP Photo/Frank Franklin)

Returning from an Olympics that had been held behind closed doors due to pandemic restrictions, Torrez was stunned by the reception he received at his first professional competition.

“When I finally walked into the ring and they called my name, the amount of applause I got was insane and I couldn’t believe it. To be able to have people there holding signs of my name and all my friends and family there, it was amazing and I underestimated all the nerves. to go in as a professional,” he said.

“I was thinking to myself, ‘Man, this is crazy, this is a totally different realm,’ and I walked into the ring and realized this is the same thing, only without a shirt. So I know what I’m doing.” to enter”. there now. I know the nature of the beast and I’m excited to show what I can do.”

In that fight, he knocked Melson down hard in the first round, the referee seemed to call off the fight, prompting the doctor to step into the ring and Torrez to celebrate. The referee changed his mind or realized his mistake and called off the fight. Torrez dove in again, only to get a serious cut on his forehead. He renewed his assault on him in the second round to ward off any danger and win by knockout.

Torrez knows he has the ability to take on giant heavyweights.  (Photo: Adam Davy/PA Archive/PA Images)
Torrez knows he has the ability to take on giant heavyweights. (Photo: Adam Davy/PA Archive/PA Images)

“It was a crazy fight,” Torrez said. “It felt like a roller coaster ride. It really did, because all the tension was released from my body [when the referee seemingly waved it off]. You feel all that tension coming back [and think,] ‘Oh, it’s time to fight again.’ As crazy as it was, I’m glad I had that in my first pro fight because I feel like every other pro fight is going to be a little bit better than that.”

Torrez is more than an action slugger. He hopes his skills, toughness, conditioning and underrated power will take him to the top of the division. She’s seen the attention his Top Rank partner Jared Anderson is enjoying and wants to join him as one of America’s top heavyweight prospects.

The two have boxed before, as amateurs, and it was Torrez who won that match.

Jared Anderson
Torrez wants to rival Jared Anderson as professional heavyweights

“We’ve been teammates since 2015, when we first went to the junior world championships in Russia. We’ve always had that competitiveness with each other,” he said of Anderson.

They boxed in 2017. “It was the National Golden Gloves, Jared was originally 201lbs and went up to 201+ just because of the tournament and we fought. We had a great fight, it was an amazing fight and I was able to get that win,” Torrez said. .

“I think Jared is an amazing guy, I think he’s a great guy and I look up to him as a fighter. Do I hope to see that fight one day? Yes, definitely. It would be an incredible thing for boxing, for the US in general, to have two weights American heavyweights going toe to toe. I can’t wait for that fight too.

“But right now I’m very well congratulating him and cheering him on all the time and one day we will meet.

“To the guys that say Jared Anderson is the best, I mean, I think Jared Anderson is an amazing heavyweight fighter, I’m just saying please wait and watch me too. I’m here to make a scene too.”

Richard Torrez will box Roberto Zavala Jr on the Arnold Barboza Jr vs Daniel Zorrilla undercard, to be seen live on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Action from 1am Saturday morning.

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