|Sechew Powell: "Ishe, bring you're A-game because you are going to need it to survive!"
INTERVIEW By Benny Henderson Jr - A.K.A "Big Dog" (Jan 31, 2007) Doghouse Boxing (Photo © Bob Kolb)
Saturday night February 17th 9:45 PM ET/PT on HBO’s Boxing After Dark, live from the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City the ‘Iron Horse’ Sechew Powell, 20-1 (12), looks to get back on the winning track when he faces off against the former “The Contender” stand out Ishe Smith, 18-1 (8), in a scheduled ten round junior middleweight showdown, and if the battle itself is as any good as the war of the words have been, then we have ourselves a solid scrap ahead of us come fight night.
Hailing from Brooklyn, Powell a former amateur stand out who compiled an impressive resume of 149-7 winning numerous amateur titles stepped in the pro ranks in the summer of 2002. He opened up his career with back-to-back knockouts before out pointing the then unbeaten Jonathon Taylor to gain his first decision victory.
The slick southpaw was administering pain to the division winning against all he faced but came to light when he stopped Cornelius Bundrage in a twenty-two second entertaining but odd fiasco. Both combatants came out with guns blazing landing simultaneously dropping to the canvas, both rose to their feet but Powell was able to fire off first dropping ‘K9’ to the canvas who then proceeded to stagger and stumble all over the ring until referee to call a halt to the match.
The ‘Iron Horse’ continued trampling his opposition with a hit list that included Santiago Samaniego (TKO 3), Archak TerMeliksetain (UD 10), and Robert Frazier (UD 10), but the young rising star fell victim to the busy body style of Kassim Ouma this past summer at Madison Square Garden.
Six months after his first disappointing loss and now Sechew is rearing and ready to get back into action and what better way to open back up in the boxing world with a throw down against a former ‘Contender’ contestant? Powell already holds two wins over former contestants of the pugilistic reality series; will Smith be his third victim?
There most certainly is not any love lost between the two, and Sechew, who is ranked number eight by the IBF wants to stop the rapping and start the tapping and come February 17th Powell plans on laying some serious leather, for now read on to see what the contender had to say on the bad blood, and the fight itself, enjoy.
Benny Henderson Jr.: First off I would like to have your thoughts on your upcoming match-up against Ishe Smith.
Sechew Powell: Ah Benny I’m just working hard, I feel good about the fight, I think this is a competitive fight, but I also feel it is a fight that I have a great chance of winning. I am going into there to execute and dominate and show the world that just because I have taken a loss to Kassim Ouma my passion to become champion of the world has not changed. I am still on the same path to become world champion and I think an impressive win come February 17th will show everyone that I am serious about obtaining my goals.
BH: There has been a little of a squabble between you two, give us the inside info on that matter at hand and to go even deeper, is the smack talk having any ill effect on your mental state going into this bout?
SP: It started on another boxing website, he said a lot of derogatory things about me, I think half of it was malicious and the other half was probably just him trying to be slick and gain some attention to himself. To answer the second part of the question, no it hasn’t taken any mental effect on me Benny, more than anything else it just showed how intense I have to be for this fight. When words are said a good man usually backs up his words, he said a few things and I’ve said a few things and the only thing that has done is helped me prepare myself even better than I would have normally done. I am taking this fight very seriously and this is very important to me to execute and dominate.
BH: Let’s drift off into your training, how is it working with trainer Buddy McGirt?
SP: This will be my first fight with Buddy but we have been training going on three months now and it has been working out great, it was one of the best moves I could have ever made. I think a part of me not progressing was my corner and the people I had in it and the lack of communication and that is what Buddy does so well, his ability to communicate to the fighters is unmatched. I have been in or around boxing for about eighteen years now and I have worked with certain trainers, some good some not so good but the point I am trying to make is his ability to communicate is unmatched so far for me personally.
BH: I’m not trying to dissect your last fight against Kassim Ouma, but with all things good or bad people should be able to take something away from every situation that can help them in the future, so what I am asking was there anything you took away from that loss that can possibly help you in the future or even in this match-up?
SP: A number of things, Benny. I realized that I can compete on the top level and win, I went into that fight confident, but at the same time I had doubts about my own self that should have never of been there. It ha something to do with my mental state at that time but that is water under the bridge but I have learned so much from that fight. I learned that I can be world champion, if that makes sense, Kassim is a tough fighter and I just fought the wrong fight; if I had the opportunity to do it again I would do it differently and I think I could still be successful against Kassim Ouma. If the opportunity would present itself again maybe I would go after it if it was a lucrative position but I move forward and I definitely think I am a better fighter because of that fight.
BH: Well let’s get off into your opponent now, when you look at this cat what do you see as his strengths that can be troublesome for yourself, and what weaknesses do you feel you can capitalize on.
SP: Well I don’t see very many strengths in Ishe, and I don’t see very many weaknesses at the same time. He is an all around basically good fighter and good boxer. He likes to box, what I see is that I don’t think he is going to want to turn it up with me the way I am going to be looking to turn it up with him, I am definitely going to take the fight to him beyond my boxing skills but at the same time being aggressive using a boxer puncher style against him and I think that is what’s going to break him down over all. He’s never really fought a true 154-pounder, everybody that he has been fighting has been coming up from 140 or 135 to ultimately meet him at one 147 and now he is stepping up to a bigger weight class so I’m the bigger guy. I think I’m the stronger guy and I think I’m the more seasoned guy, I have had the better opposition more consistently, he has fought one or two good fighters yes but I think I have been more consistent with my opposition and that is going to be a big difference in the fight.
BH: We know the importance of getting back on track in your career, and we know what this fight means to your future, so in saying this and being brutally honest, does this motivate you more, or does it put an extra amount of pressure on you coming into this one?
SP: It definitely motivates me more, I turn pressure into motivation, this is a very important fight, this fight determines if I am going to continue to go on an up ramp or an a down ramp, and I am definitely not going to go downward this is my life long passion to be a world champion and I am definitely not looking to give that up to some Ishe Smith. I am going in there and I am looking to dominate, I am looking to beat this guy up every round, I am looking to win, it is nothing personal, well maybe it is but I am not going to let that get in the way of me trying to be successful, this is a very important fight. I take this fight as do or die, and not only this fight but every fight from here on out for me, this is do or die and that is the attitude I am having, for the rest of my career. It is a short career and you have to take it that way if you are serious about obtaining your goals in this business.
BH: What will the fight fans see differently in the ‘Iron Horse’ that we may not have seen in your last outing?
SP: I think they will see a little bit more of professionalism, they can see me being smarter in the ring as opposed to seeing me in the past, they are going to see quicker hands and a harder body. I have never had my body in such great shape, I have a strength and conditioning coach and we have been working straight through, something I have never done before, I am doing new things, I am doing things that I should have done in the past, they say it is never late to start putting your best foot forward. So they are going to see an over all, all around better fighter.
BH: If you could send out a message to Ishe what would it be?
SP: I would tell him to be ready and bring his A-game because he is going to need that just to survive, just to survive the type of attack I am going to bring to him.
BH: Is there anything you would like to add or say in closing of this interview?
SP: I just want to say thank you Benny to you and Doghouse for always keeping me fresh on your site and to all the fans that support the ‘Iron Horse’ I want to say thank you. There might not be very many of them but the few that are out there I appreciate them and God bless them and the ones who are not ‘Iron Horse’ fans, one day hopefully one day you will be. I am working real hard to impress all boxing fans and hopefully they will recognize me as the champion or the peoples’ champ.
I would like to thank Sechew Powell for taking the time out to speak to Doghouse Boxing. For more information on the ‘Iron Horse’ please check out www.myspace.com/ironhorse154
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