Last Saturday at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, NV, WBO heavyweight champion Lamon Brewster successfully defended his title for the first time against former sparring partner and friend Kali Meehan on Showtime. The twelve round championship bout was a Don King Promotion that ended with a split decision and an apologetic champion. Lamon Brewster wanted nothing more than to show the public his championship side and to put on a show for the fans. Well, the fans got a show but it wasn’t what most of the ringside and Showtime crowd expected. Australian fighter Kali Meehan gave the champion could handle and then some. But as the Rocky movies go, the star always seems to dig deep and find a way to win, and that is just what Brewster did. With a bloody nose early in the fight and possible broken cheekbone, Brewster rallied back to get a close decision and held on to his WBO heavyweight title. Brewster doesn’t make excuses for his mistakes, he learns from them. And he learned that sometimes when the fight doesn’t seem to go your way, you keep on keeping on. With the stage now set for a possible fight in November against heavyweight great Evander Holyfield, Brewster has put the past behind him and is looking towards the future. In the second installment of an interview Doghouse conducted with the champ, we discuss his recent bout with Kali Meehan and talk about the future holds for him. Here is how it went.
Benny Henderson Jr.: There have been reports that your jaw was broken in the fight. Exactly how is your jaw?
Lamon Brewster: It’s not the jaw it is the cheekbone.
BH: Well there has been some speculation that the fight with Holyfield will be against Kali Meehan instead of you because of your broken cheekbone. What is the deal?
LB: Well hey, you know I can’t answer that yet. A doctor hasn’t seen my cheekbone yet so we can’t say for sure or not if I will be taking that fight. So we will see. My cheekbone is sore but I don’t know what the final prognosis is. So as far as I know I am still fighting Evander but I have to get it cleared by the doctor first.
BH: So if everything is ok you will be fighting Evander Holyfield in November?
LB: Yes, if everything is ok with my cheekbone we will be fighting.
BH: The question the fans want to know is, why Evander? Is there a particular reason for this fight?
LB: No, there isn’t a particular reason. For me it is the experience of fighting an old treacherous champion. His name on my résumé for one, and for two Evander is still a dangerous fighter. I think it will be great to get that experience with him.
BH: Some will say Lamon that this fight is a lose-lose situation for you because for one if you win people will say that Holyfield is old, and if you were to lose people will say that Lamon Brewster was never legit.
LB: I look at it as passing of the torch. Sometimes the person doesn’t want to give up the torch so you have to take it from them. This is the case where Evander just don’t want to give up the torch so I am going to have to take it from him. I have to let people know that this isn’t a fight where I said that I wanted the fight; this is a fight that is given to me. When your promoter who is guiding you in your career says this is a fight you should take, then you don’t question that. You go ahead and handle your business and that is what I am going to do.
BH: What are your thoughts on your performance against Kali Meehan?
LB: If I had to give myself a grade between 1-10, I would give myself a 2. I had a bad performance. It was an off-night for me. There were a lot of things that went on behind the scenes that I felt like interfered with me being at my best in the ring out side my physical condition. Now I am just looking forward to making those changes and going ahead in my career.
BH: What are your thoughts on Kali Meehan?
LB: I think he is a good fighter, tough and a force to be reckoned with in terms of people wanting to fight him. It’s not that he can’t be beat it is just that he is a tough guy who comes to fight. Whenever you fight a man who fights from his heart you will always have a tough fight regardless of his skill level.
BH: Do you feel the split decision was fair?
LB: I thought it was close but I just barely did enough to win. I don’t think that I beat him by a big margin or anything like that; I think it was a very close fight. Closer than I should have let it be.
BH: Holyfield was a warrior in his day and some will say that he is washed up now. But is there anything that concerns you with him? Is he still a major threat in the heavyweight division?
LB: I don’t think that he is a major threat because of his age, the youth just isn’t on his side and his legs just aren’t there. But don’t ever, ever underestimate old age and treachery. He has so much experience in that ring that to underestimate that is foolish. And I think that anybody who underestimates Evander Holyfield is asking to get knocked out. The last thing to leave a man is his power.
BH: Let’s just say that is was all up to Lamon Brewster. Who would you fight, would it still be Holyfield or somebody else?
LB: Vitali Klitschko.
BH: How do you feel you would fair against him? He is a bigger guy and has heart.
LB: I set back and I waited and waited with Kali. That is something I wouldn’t do against Vitali Klitschko, it would be a dogfight. I mean, I would be after his throat every second of every round.
BH: After the Holyfield fight are you going to call Vitali out or do you feel you should do what Don King leads you to do?
LB: I am going to continue to let Don guide my career because he has led me to two championships and I won’t question, or I will try not to question his direction. So far he has been pretty accurate in guiding my career.
BH: If there were a rematch with Meehan, what would you do differently?
LB: Everything, everything except the conditioning. I would have a game plan for this fight a much different tactical game plan that I would carry out. I went into this fight without a game plan basically and that was my first mistake.
BH: After the fight you both were cool to each other and at dinner he come down and sit beside you and you two ate together. After beating the hell out of each other you two were ok with each other.
LB: It was just business, it wasn’t personal. It was like to businessmen at the business table trying to strike out the best deal for each other. I don’t look at it any more than that.
BH: I seriously thought there was going to be another fight when he sat down and grabbed a piece of your pizza. [Laughing]
LB: [Laughing] Ah no man, it was cool. It’s all good.
BH: In the 8th round he had you against the ropes hitting you pretty good. I talked to Jay Nady after the fight and he mentioned something about a wink or somebody winking at him.
LB: I did. I wasn’t hurt, I was stunned when he hurt my cheekbone the pain was just excruciating, so it put me back to the ropes to try to regroup and fight this man some more. But in the process I was aware because I heard Jay Nady saying you got to throw punches or I’m going to stop the fight, so I looked at Nady and let him know this cat isn’t doing nothing he just caught me with a punch.
BH: You took a lot of hard shots with Wladimir and in this fight. I believe you have a lot of heart and a great chin. But in time those shots will have to take its toll on the body. Does that worry you?
LB: Of course I worry about it, but I have to be honest with you. If you look at the tape, some of the shots he hit me with I would roll my head and take the steam off the punch. Meehan didn’t hit me with a lot of solid punches. The Klitschko fight people thought I got hit with a lot of solid punches, but a lot of those slide off of me when I rolled my head. I turned my body with the shot to go with it.
BH: If something happens to where you are not able to make the Holyfield fight and Kali Meehan fights him instead, how do you feel Kali will fair up against Holyfield?
LB: I think if he boxes and stays away from Holyfield I think he can win.
BH: Is there anything you want to add to this interview?
LB: The thing that I would like to add at this point is that I would like to give my sincere apology to the fans because I let a lot of people down and I just want to make a vow that this will be the last fight that people will see me not at my best. I apologize for that.
Benny with The Champ
Writer's note: I want to thank Jenna McGrath for all her great help with getting the interview. On behalf of Doghouse Boxing I would like to thank Lamon for his time for the fans and the site. And I would like to personally thank Lamon and all of Team Brewster for their kindness at ringside and at dinner, you guys made me feel like part of the team.
© Copyright / All Rights reserved: Doghouse Boxing 1998-2004