Interviews

Chris Algieri Is Making Himself at Home at Barclays Center

Chris Algieri Is Making Himself at Home at Barclays Center

Chris Algieri - Stephanie Trapp (2)
Photo by Stephanie Trapp

Nearly 18 months ago Chris Algieri (20-2, 8 KOs) came to Barclays Center as a heavy underdog to Ruslan Provodnikov. Algieri was expected to get steamrolled by the “Siberian Rocky” en route to a showdown with Manny Pacquiao. Instead, Algieri came back from two first-round knockdowns and a closed left eye to win a split decision and take the Pacquiao fight right from underneath of Provodnikov.

Algieri went on to lose a one-sided bout to Pacquiao, but then rebounded with an inspired performance in a loss to Amir Khan. The bout was far closer than the 117-111 in favor of Khan that two of the judges’ had on their scorecards. The third judge, Don Ackerman, had it more accurately at 115-113 for Khan.

Come Saturday night, Algieri will be in the unfamiliar role as the favorite when he takes on Erick Bone (16-2, 8 KOs) as the featured bout on Showtime Extreme undercard on the Daniel Jacobs-Peter Quillin world title bout card.

“I love Barclays Center,” Algieri said. “It’s my favorite place to fight. It’s where I have done my best work, it’s easy for my Long Island fans to get to and the Brooklyn fans are amazing.”

This will be his second fight with new trainer John David Jackson, who also trains light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev.

“I feel much more comfortable with John after our second camp together,” Algieri said. “We made some good adjustments and are settling in together.”

Bone is coming off a knockout loss to Shawn Porter last March and knows facing Algieri now is an opportunity of a lifetime.

“I learned a lot from my fight with Porter,” Bone said through an interpreter. “I learned not to give my opponent too much respect in the early rounds and of course not to take a big fight on 24 hours notice.”

Bone feels he had an opportunity to upset Porter, but an injury in the third round made the task insurmountable. Bone was able to fight on another two rounds before being stopped by Porter.

“I think Bone will come out like it’s the fight of his life,” Algieri said. “On this level every opponent is a dangerous one.”

Promoter Lou DiBella believes a win by Algieri will place him back in the hunt for a big fight.

“Chris needs to keep his eye on the ball,” DiBella said. “I believe if Chris wins we will see him come right back in a big fight.”

Algieri is too smart to look past Bone, but did add that he would love another crack at Khan in the near future.

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