Bob Arum said Julio Cesar Chavez could fight Brian Vera next, and eventually, Andre Ward.
Lem's latest: Mitchell says loss to Banks ruined Thanksgiving
Heavyweight Seth Mitchell said he wants to "right this wrong" by defeating Johnathon Banks, who stopped Mitchell in the second round in November.
"When I went back in the dressing room after the fight, when I talked to [advisor,] Al Haymon, I asked him two questions," said Mitchell, of the Nov. 17 setback. "I asked him how much did this set me back and when can I get a rematch.
For Mitchell (25-1-1, 19 knockouts), the loss ended a streak of 23 wins with 18 knockouts, including the previous 10 straight. Meanwhile, Banks (29-1-1, 19 KOs) improved to 9-0-1, with five knockouts.
"The first two days, it was like you just said, did this really just happen? Did I just lose this fight?," said Mitchell, who, like Banks, is 30 years old.
"I'm an optimistic person. I try to look at the glass as half full, but it was difficult. Like I say, thanks to Johnathon I didn't enjoy my Thanksgiving," said Mitchell.
Mitchell and Banks will return to the site of their last fight on Feb. 16 at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, where they will engage in a rematch to be televised, yet again, on HBO.
"I want to get this nasty taste out of my mouth. I want to win the fight. This is what I do to support my family as of right now, and I have to continue to win. So, I wouldn't necessarily say that it's redemption because Johnathon, he came out there and he did what he was supposed to do, and that's what I plan on doing this time. I plan on coming out victorious," said Mitchell.
BANKS EXPECTS 'DIFFERENT' MITCHELL FOR REMATCH
Both Mitchell and Banks agree that the jab was the key in their initial clash. Mitchell won the first round primarily by working his way forward behind his jab, only to abandon it too swiftly.
But Banks said he expects Mitchell to make adjustments.
"The difference is knowing that you're going against a top level guy, knowing you're going against someone who's, like he said, you want to right a wrong that's done. So he has to look at himself. He already said he knew what he did wrong, so that's already being corrected as we speak. So, therefore, I just figure that when I say I'm facing a different guy," said Banks.
ADRIEN BRONER'S NOT AVERSE TO RISK-TAKING AGAINST GAVIN REES
Banks-Mitchell II will be on the undercard of a main event featuring challenger Gavin Rees (37-1-1, 18 KOs), of Wales, against WBC lightweight titleholder Adrien "The Problem" Broner (25-0, 21 KOs), a talented 23-year-old, stylistic boxer-puncher who said he would not be averse to taking risks against Rees.
"It's not about the fans. It's just different strokes for different folks. Like I said, I can still stand in front of a guy and not get hit," Broner, a former WBO junior lightweight titletholder who will pursue his sixth straight knockout against Rees, and is coming off November's eighth-round knockout that dethroned Antonio DeMarco in Atlantic City on HBO.
"You don't have to move just to not get hit. There's a lot of certain ways, you can do certain things that you just won't get hit and I was blessed with the talent and I can do it all. Like I said, I can brawl like a bang, but at the end of the day, people don't hit me much."
REES SAYS HE'S READY FOR U.S. DEBUT, BRONER
Reese, 32, is 10-0-1, with five knockouts since, himself, having been dethroned as junior welterweight titleholder via 12th-round stoppage by Andreas Kotelnik in March of 2008.
Reese has earned consecutive victories over previously unbeaten fighters John Watson and Andy Murray by 11th-round knockout and unanimous decision in November of 2010 and June of last year, respectively.
After battling to a draw with Derry Mathews in October of last year, Rees scored two straight knockouts, the last in the ninth round over Mathews in July.
Rees is making his debut in the United States.
Rees said he is prepared for Broner, having seen enough of him to have familiarized himself with the style of the Cincinnati, Ohio, native.
"There's loads of videos. I see him box all the time. He's, obviously, a very talented boy for his age, even for anybody's age. He's a great kid, so I'm really looking forward to the fight and just glad they're giving me this chance to prove how good I am," said Rees.
Photos by Naoki Fukuda
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org