The only thing better than being a world champion for Peter “Kid Chocolate” Quillin (31-0, 22 KOs) is being a two-time world champion. On Saturday night, Quillin will challenge WBO middleweight champion Andy Lee (34-2, 24 KOs) in an attempt to win back the very same belt he vacated last year when he refused to make his mandatory defense against Matt Korobov.
Quillin turned down a reported career high pay day of $1.4 million dollars to let go of his title and focus on personal life, which included the birth of his first child and and the passing of his uncle.
“In that moment I learned I can be a bigger man and that was a very big decision to make,” says Quillin. “That’s what brought me here today by making these tough decisions and when I gave up my belt it really tells me who my friends are and who’s really there for me.”
Quillin has gone through his fair share of struggles, especially when his wife miscarried during their first pregnancy.
“When we lost that baby I was in camp getting ready for the Gabe Rosado fight,” adds Quillin. “I wasn’t able to go to her when she lost the baby. I wasn’t able to come back for one day of comfort. So with this one I showed her I can put family first.”
Despite receiving a ton of criticism on social media for deciding to sit out almost a full year and not fight his mandatory opponents, Quillin claims to not be phased by it.
“Half the people have the time to say those things,” says Quillin. “I don’t have the time to read it. If I respond then I’m giving in to them so out of sight, out of mind.”
Lee ended up knocking out Korobov to win the title that Quillin will now have a chance to win back. Quillin won that title with an emotional victory at the Barclays Center when he defeated Hassan N’Dam in 2012.
Now, Quillin will once again fight in his backyard at the Barclays Center as the co-feature of the Danny Garcia-Lamont Peterson Premier Boxing Champions card on NBC.
“This fight will be a chess match,” says Quillin. “I’m a boxer puncher and so is Andy. This is a big fight for me and I’m excited.”
Although Lee won his last two fights with dramatic knockouts, Quillin said he will be ready for anything Lee brings.
“I get paid to fight 12 rounds so I am prepared to fight 12 rounds,” Quillin adds. “However I do not get paid for overtime so if I can get him out of there early I will.”
Family stays at the top of mind for Quillin and if it were up to him he would love to have another child with his wife very soon.
“She needs to hurry up and get pregnant again,” Quillin says with a smile. “It was amazing when we had the first one so I’m not done yet. I want at least one more. It’s not about me anymore. It’s about my kid and that’s my motivation.”
All quotes obtained first hand by Vladimir Lik