FAST talking and charismatic US heavyweight Malik ‘King’ Scott (36-2, 13KOs) took time out of his training camp in Los Angeles to chat to Aus-Boxing’s Dan Smart about his upcoming make or break fight with recent world title challenger and Aussie slugger, Alex ‘Lionheart’ Leapai (30-5, 24 KOs).
The fight, which is scheduled to take place at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre on October 24th.
Scott talks of a desire to again challenge powerful countryman, Deontay Wilder, how his preparation has been leading in to the fight with Leapai, and his bold statement about possible retirement.
Malik Scott is a confident and charismatic individual.
Known for his quirky sense of humour and his polished skill set inside the ring, the former world amateur champion is embarking on yet another foray overseas into foreign land to challenge hard hitting Aussie, Alex Leapai, a man that is hell bent on righting the wrongs of his challenge to the best heavyweight in the last ten years, Wladimir Klitschko back in March of this year.
This will be Scott’s second attempt outside of the US fighting overseas, the first a stoppage loss to England’s Derek Chisora back in July 2013. Most recently, Scott challenged feared undefeated heavyweight, Deontay Wilder who has amassed an imposing 32-0 record, ending all of his 32 victories inside the distance.
Amid much controversy, it was alleged by many that Scott had actually taken a dive in his 1st round knockout loss to Wilder after what appeared to be a glancing blow to Scott’s temple. A claim that was totally refuted by the American saying the blow affected his equilibrium thus being unable to beat the count from referee Roberto Ramirez in Puerto Rico of March this year.
Scott is now looking forward to redemption with his fight with Leapai saying that his preparation has been great.
“The preparation has been great. I am looking forward to coming over and taking Australia on the 24th. We have our sparring partners lined up, I’m training hard every single day, things couldn’t be better.”
“This is my first step to redemption, so here we go.”
When quizzed by myself on what is next for him if he should get by Leapai, Scott interrupted saying I was ruining the interview by suggesting an “if”.
He said “Now you’re messing the whole interview up, you said if. I don’t know if it’s because you’re an Australian reporter or what, but there are no if’s, I’m gonna beat Alex Leapai, he’s tailored made for me, and this isn’t the first time he has lost to a fighter that is better than him.”
When asked about some of the threats Leapai poses, Scott acknowledged him as a powerful opponent and even went as far as to suggest that should he lose to Leapai, he will retire.
“He’s a strong, strong short powerful guy. We have a lot to prove after our last fights, it’s a cross roads fight for both of us. In fact, if I don’t win, I’m gonna retire. The problem is when guys start losing to B and C minus guys they should retire. I’m fighting at a top level, the type of guys I’m fighting are considered heavyweight champion material.”
“I mean if he loses, I don’t know what f*** he gonna do but I am coming to win, Australia is far too long a trip to come back empty handed.”
“When I get past Leapai, my ultimate goal is to get a rematch with Deontay Wilder, he’s a wanted man on my list, so I can’t retire til I fight him again. I just wanna put myself back into a position for a world title shot.”
This is a great fight for not only Australian boxing, but world boxing in general. Two very hungry, talented world class heavyweights eyeing the opportunity to yet again be put back into world title contention.
My advice for those in attendance or watching in their lounge rooms – don’t blink.
Words: Dan Smart
Photo: Getty Images