Middleweight contender, Luis Arias is currently undefeated with a record of 17-0 (8 KO’s) as he approaches his biggest fight against #16 ranked IBO contender, Arif Magomedov. Arias is a former 2008 and 2010 United States Amateur champion at middleweight and has highly respected trainer John David Jackson working his corner. Luis hopes an impressive win against Magomedov might lead to a world title shot.
In part 1 of my interview with Luis Arias, I discuss with him his upcoming fight against Arif Magomedov and get his view on what the fight means for his career. I also talk with Luis about his progress so far in his career and if he thinks he’s ready for a world title shot. Additionally, Arias talks about the middleweight division, gives his views on Golovkin vs. Canelo and talks about facing the winner of that fight. Here is what Luis Arias had to say.
Robert Brown: You have a fight against Arif Magomedov coming up, how has training been going so far and what do you think of the fight?
Luis Arias: So far training camp has been excellent. I just recently fought and had this fight offered to me about two weeks after my last fight. I came into this camp already relatively in shape, my weight is great, my defense is there, my timing is there. Things couldn’t be going any better. In terms of Magomedov, he’s a tough guy, he’s been ranked in the top ten a couple of times now. He’s a tough competitor and I know he’s going to come to fight, but he’s already been beat, so on June 17th I plan on beating him again.
Robert Brown: What do you feel will be your strengths against Magomedov? What do you feel will be some of his weaknesses that you can exploit?
Luis Arias: I feel that I’m overall the better fighter. I beat him in every category. I’m the bigger fighter coming in, I’m the stronger fighter, I’m more confident, I’m the undefeated champion coming in. The pressure is on him not to lose again. I’ve been fighting for a long time, the guy is aggressive and I plan to use his aggressiveness against him. He’s going to get broken down and I plan on knocking him out. He won’t have to look for me, he won’t have to go find me. I’m going to be in his face all night.
Robert Brown: Do you think you will be going to the body early in this fight?
Luis Arias: Yeah, I plan on breaking him down from the jump. He’s an aggressive fighter, so I have to slow him down, and that’s the best way to slow him down. I’ve always been a great body puncher, even since the amateurs. In the amateurs, the effect of a body shot isn’t the same as it is in the pros, and now that I’ve been a professional for four years, I’ve been able to elevate my game and master the body punches.
I’ve been learning to break these guys down with the smaller gloves. I’m bigger and I feel stronger, so these body shots that I’m hitting these guys with are a lot more crucial. I think the body punching is going to be one of the big factors in the fight, and he’s going to be feeling it all night. I’m not going to run, I don’t plan on moving too much, I’m going to be in his face breaking him down until he either quits, the ref stops it, or if he wants to take the beating for ten rounds, he can take it.
Robert Brown: Your fight will be on the undercard of the Ward-Kovalev rematch card. What does it mean to get exposure on an event like this?
Luis Arias: It’s been a true blessing. My career hasn’t been going exactly how I would like for it to go. It took me a while to get to this level and get this opportunity, but it’s finally here and it feels great. I’m just truly blessed that I was able to work here and stay consistent and stay focused. Everyone’s career and time is different and my time is now.
Robert Brown: How do you feel about the talent in your division at the moment? When do you feel you will be ready to fight the top guys in the division?
Luis Arias: I’m ready right now. I had a lot of amateur fights, I’m 17 fights in as a pro, I have two world champions training me. My boxing and my ability to compete right now are at an all time high. Personally, I think I’m ready, but you have to do things at the right thing, slowly, it’s not a race, it’s a marathon. I’m just taking my time, timing is everything.
I’m coming out at a perfect time, I’m relatively unknown but I know I stand among the best. June 17th is my opportunity to show to the world that I am a top fighter in this division. I feel I’m coming at a perfect time, my goal is to be the number one contender by the end of the year or early next year, so that when Gennady Golovkin and Canelo are done with their fight, they’re going to need to fight somebody early next year, and I plan on putting myself in position to be that next fight for either one of them.
Robert Brown: Who do you think will win that fight between Canelo and Golovkin?
Luis Arias: I think the fight is a fifty-fifty fight, but I definitely give an edge to Golovkin. At first I thought Canelo was going to beat him, but after I saw them in the ring and I saw the size difference and I saw how much bigger ‘GGG’ is, I think that’s going to play a big factor in this fight. It’s going to come down to who has a better night, but I’m giving ‘GGG’ the edge.