Matt “Sharp Shooter” Remillard is well known on the Eastern Seaboard. Now he has a chance to make a name for himself nationally.
The talented fighter from Hartford, Conn., is scheduled to face fellow unbeaten featherweight Mikey Garcia on March 26 in Atlantic City, N.J., on HBO’s Boxing After Dark series.
Remillard has received national television exposure only once before, a four-round fight on ESPN2 early in his career.
“It’s my first fight with Top Rank, so I need to be impressive because they’ve shown a lot of faith in me by putting me on HBO,” Remillard said. “There’s a lot of pressure, but I thrive on pressure.
“…“I’ve only fought on ESPN once, and that was for only four rounds. HBO is the biggest network. Everybody wants to fight on HBO. This is the perfect opportunity for me, and I will be prepared.”
Remillard (23-0, 13 knockouts) has not faced anyone with the reputation of Garcia, although matchups with Rafael Lora, Carlos Rivera and Oscar Cuero were solid tests.
Garcia (24-0, 20 knockouts) has victories over higher-caliber opponents, including Cornelius Lock and Olivier Lontchi.
The younger brother of trainer Robert Garcia lives in Oxnard, Calif., a long way from Connecticut, but Remillard is familiar with his upcoming opponent.
“I knew him pretty well when we were amateurs, and I can’t say a bad word about him,” he said. “I know his style: He’s a banger with both hands, one of the best fighters in our division, and he has a great team. Robert Garcia has done a great job with Mikey and his whole stable of fighters.”
Remillard, now training under Michael “Mike Red” Skownowski in Passaic, N.J., is excited.
“I think we have a great TV fight,” he said. “This is a fight that deserves to be on television, and I’m glad HBO put its faith in both of us. You don’t see two young, undefeated fighters going against each other very often. (Timothy) Bradley and (Devan) Alexander did a few weeks ago, but a lot of people didn’t think it lived up to all the hype. Everybody expected an all out war but stuff happens like Alexander getting cut.”
Dennis Taylor is editor/publisher of www.ringsideboxingshow.com and co-host of The Ringside Boxing Show