If the talk between Austin Trout and Erislandy Lara comes to fruition, fans will be treated to an entertaining fight when the once-beaten junior middleweights meet in the ring on Dec. 7 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
“I feel like he lacks some heart and will, and I’m going to go in and expose that,” said Trout, a 28-year-old southpaw from Ne Mexico, who was last in the New York City area on Dec. 1 of 2012 when scored a unanimous decision over Miguel Cotto at Madison Square Garden. That career high was followed by a low when he lost a unanimous decision to Canelo Alvarez in his last fight in April.
“I am going to make (Lara) look like the amateur that he is. I want to get rid of this guy, and I feel like I’m the right guy to do it. He talked stuff before the fight was made, and then, once the fight was made, he got real quiet. Whether I like him or don’t like him, which I don’t, it doesn’t change the fact that I’m going to try to take his head off.”
In his last fight, Lara (18-1-2, 12 knockouts) rose from knockdowns in the fourth and ninth rounds to score a 10th-round stoppage of Alfredo Angulo, which had followed a disputed draw with Vanes Martirosyan in November of 2012.
Like Trout (26-1, 14 KOs), Lara’s return to the East Coast means he is coming back to the site of one of his best performances, a majority-decision loss against former two-time welterweight titleholder Paul Williams in 2011, which many ringsiders and boxing insiders thought Lara had won.
“Austin Trout’s an okay fighter,” said Lara, a 30-year-old southpaw from Cuba, where he was an amateur star. “There’s nothing special about him. I feel that he’s on his way out. He had his time, and I’m going to prove that. As far as having the heart, let’s see in the ring. I’ll show him in the ring who has the heart and who does not. We’ll decide then.
“The big difference between Paul Williams and Austin Trout is that Paul Williams has balls. He was a fighter who would attack you and that was aggressive and he would come at you and he knew how to box as well. With Austin Trout, he’s just a guy that runs. He’s always been a fighter that runs.”
Trout-Lara is part of a stacked card that is headlined by former junior welterweight and welterweight titleholders Paulie Malignaggi and Zab Judah, a pair of Brooklyn natives who will engage in a 147-pound bout.
“I’m not even thinking about the Canelo fight. I’m not even thinking of anything beyond this fight,” said Lara. “My job is to first beat Austin Trout, and then, after that, all of the other doors are going to open up and I’ll take on all comers. Right now, I’m just focused on this fight and I’m focused on busting up Austin Trout’s mouth.”
Meanwhile, Trout will be in against a fellow left-hander for the first time since June of 2011, when he dropped David Lopez in the 11th round of a unanimous decision victory.
“Lara’s not David Lopez and I’m not Paul Williams, so the comparison is not really there. David was a bigger, stronger dude, in my opinion, but he was also slower,” said Trout.
“So, to try to look at that fight toward this fight, you know, it’s apples and oranges. Lara says that I don’t have any balls, then he hasn’t watched me fight. Which is fine, he can believe that if he wants to. But I am telling you, Lara is on his way out.”
Photo by Naoki Fukuda
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org