Lemieux acknowledges he has a big task in taking on David Benavidez. | Photo by Tom Hogan/Golden Boy/Getty Images
Lemieux looks to benefit from not having to drain himself in this 168lb fight.
With David Lemieux set for his May 21 Showtime main event against David Benavidez, he spoke to the media during a virtual press conference about this shot to invigorate his career and get some momentum going.
“I’m expecting a great fight. David Benavídez is a very tough fighter,” Lemieux said. “We’ve been watching him for a while. He’s always very exciting. His style of fighting – he comes to fight – there’s no messing around with him. That’s my style too. Two bulls going in there and may the best man win this title. We want that WBC belt around my waste and I’m planning on having it on fight night.
“I know it’s a difficult fight. I’m training very hard and doing everything I need to do inside the gym. I don’t want to lose this opportunity. I know Benavídez is a great fighter. I’m going to work very hard and bring the best that David Lemieux can bring. I’m leaving with the WBC title on fight night”
For this fight Lemieux will be fighting at super middleweight despite typically campaigning as a middleweight, but he believes he’s well prepared for the task at hand.
“I do believe that my power will translate at 168 pounds. I’ve been working a lot to integrate into the 168-pound division and I believe my power will be at its peak on fight night. Benavídez is a big guy. We know that. But we’re preparing and we have the right sparring partners. I’m going to go in there and be very strong. It’s been a long time since I’ve had an opponent like Benavídez, but I’m excited. I’m very hyped up about this fight. I know what a victory will do for my career and I won’t miss my shot.
“I’m not looking past this fight. I’m just concentrated on Benavidez. This is a big fight ahead of me. Canelo chooses a lot of his fights but there are rules in boxing that you have to respect. The winner of the interim belt has to fight the champion so if he follows the rules, the rules are the rules. That’s it.
“It’s definitely a big task in front of me. When I sat down with my team and Benavídez’s name came up, we knew it was a tough fight. He’s a tough fighter and a big guy, but we’re preparing and getting ready for him. It’s all in the preparation. Styles make fights. I have the style to hurt Benavídez and I’m training hard to beat this guy.”
And while many will probably write off Lemieux’s chances in this fight, he’s keeping a positive attitude.
“Anything can be done, you just have to go out and do it,” Lemieux said. “David Benavídez is a very good fighter but everybody is beatable. Nobody is invincible. That’s what we have to prove. There’s no cheating boxing. You train hard for a fight. You don’t underestimate your opponent and surprises can happen. I’m planning on bringing that title back home to Montreal.
“Regardless of your age, it’s really now or never in every fight in the boxing ring. You don’t get many chances to leave a good mark in the game, so every fight needs to be taken very seriously, especially a fight of this magnitude. There’s a lot at stake for me. I know I’m the underdog, but I don’t care. I’m just going in there to fight, underdog or not. I’ve been the underdog in the past and I’ve won the fights. It doesn’t really bother me.
“The eight pounds makes a world of a difference. 160 pounds was very difficult to make, especially towards the end. I feel great training at 168. I’m very comfortable making that weight. I’m training very hard, building strength and muscle and not worrying about cutting weight. I’m feeling great.
“I feel like I’ve been underestimated during my career. But the only way to come back is with a strong victory against an opponent of an elite level. That’s what I’m planning on doing on May 21.”