Adrian Granados believes Conor Benn should underestimate him at his own peril.
Just over a month since their originally scheduled bout was postponed after Benn tested positive for Covid-19, the gritty Mexican-American is aching to take out his frustrations on the Essex contender in their 12-round welterweight clash at the Emerald Headingley Stadium in Leeds this Saturday.
A sizeable 8-1 underdog with BetFred, Granados (21-8-3, 15 KOs) has mixed it with some of the best at 147lbs, including Shawn Porter, Danny Garcia and Adrian Broner, and hopes to prove that he still has a part to play at top level whilst derailing Benn’s world championship ambitions.
“I’ve been chomping at the bit for this fight,” said Granados. “It was frustrating at the time [of the postponement] because we were ready to go. I was already in the zone and just ready to fight Conor, but it happened, this is the day and age we live in now where this can happen. I’m still crossing my fingers because we’re not there yet, when the bell goes, I’ll feel a little calmer. It worked out, I got a couple of days off and then flew home. We didn’t even stay for the fights. We flew right home and got back to work.
“It’s fight week, so I think he reignited the flame again, but he’s been pretty quiet the past few weeks. Leading up to the last fight he was very vocal and brash. I think somebody hit him with some peace of mind and he’s tried to go the humble route this time. We all know how Conor Benn is and we know the type of character he is, and it’s starting to come back.
“I’m excited. I accept all challenges. If he thinks that he’s better than me on his worst day, I want his best. Don’t give me your worst, I want the best of Conor Benn so I can beat him straight out. I think I’m better than him. It’s not so much humbling him, it’s more teaching him a lesson. My career has been so up and down, and I’ve been in and out of so many different controversial things. I’m on a mission to prove my point that I’m still one of the best fighters in the world.
“A lot of people are underestimating me. The odds are crazy right now. The way it looks they’re already making plans for him in December against Adrian Broner – somebody who I believe I beat as well. If I beat Conor then I’ll be like, ‘let me get that Broner fight’. Let me get my rematch. If he’s looking past me then let me look past him. If you guys have got future plans for him then I’m going to start making my own plans.
“I don’t have the prettiest record in boxing and usually people are quick to attack me with that. The real diehards hit me with the fact that I’ve been robbed so many times. All three of my draws were clear wins and my losses – I count maybe half of them or three of them. I can’t accept all of those losses that I have. It’s just unfortunate. That’s why I feel boxing is actually killing itself. It turns people off the sport. I’m hoping for a fair shake and that justice is served, and that the best man wins.
“We’re both hot heads – I think him a lot more than I. I’ve got it in me. I’ve got that Mexican style. I’m that type if you hit me, I want to hit you back. It’s going to make for exciting fireworks. I’m excited for this fight, he’s excited for this fight and everyone is excited for this fight. We’re both planning on putting on a show. I just turned 32, I’m a young veteran. I’m a savvy vet and I’ve got a lot of tools in my toolbox. I think I’ve got a lot more to offer in a fight than Conor Benn.”
Main image: Mark Robinson, Matchroom Boxing.