Donnell Poe (1-0, 1 KO), a 24-year-old pro boxer fighting out of Fort Washington, MD, will be fighting on October 29 in our Nation’s Capital.
Poe is coming off a first-round TKO of Sergio Garcia Dominguez, and is looking to continue his winning streak in his second fight.
Poe was born in NW Washington DC, and raised in Temple Hills, MD. Round By Round Boxing recently got a chance to meet with him for a Q&A.
Round By Round Boxing: How are you feeling coming into this fight next week?
Donnell Poe: I am feeling pretty good, training went really well. Feeling pretty good.
RBRBoxing: Have you found out who your opponent is yet?
Poe: No, I actually don’t know a name exactly. Because I had one and then it switched.
RBRBoxing: How do you plan for your fight when your opponent is unknown?
Poe: I would just say to be prepared for everything and anything. Just training hard! First round go out there and work your jab, stay busy, pay attention and just be careful and just figure your opponent out. Go out there and see what he has to offer.
RBRBoxing: Your first fight was a first-round KO correct?
Poe: Yes, it was a first round KO in Mexico.
RBRBoxing: Are you looking to go for the first round KO again?
Poe: If I could get it that would be great. But I am not going to rush it, I’m not trying to force a knockout. If it happens, it happens. Just want to come away with a victory and me and my opponent be healthy coming out of the ring, that is all that really matters to me.
RBRBoxing: How do you think serving as a Marine has helped prepare you for boxing?
Poe: I don’t necessarily know, because I was boxing for years before I joined the Marine Corp. I would say boxing helped me with the Marine Corp. More than the other way around. It made me more discipline and calmer.
RBRBoxing: What age did you begin boxing?
Poe: The month after I turned 14.
RBRBoxing: Were you able to box while you were serving?
Poe: Not really, I was in the field for three weeks a month at a time, sleeping outside. Then I was deployed for eight months. So my four years in the military I was never really boxing. If I did go to a gym, it would only be for a month or two. I would be out of boxing shape.
RBRBoxing: Are there differences in training as a Marine vs. Boxer?
Poe: 100 percent different. I could not be in boxing shape and still be better than everyone I was around in the military. Not that they weren’t in shape. I could run three miles in under 18 minutes. Cardio was much better, but physical strength was better in the military. Once I got out my body just naturally lost that weight.
RBRBoxing: How did you get started with boxing?
Poe: It was just me and my brother started boxing together–he is really good too. We was on YouTube just watching Mike Tyson fights, just knocking people out. We weren’t big physically for football and wasn’t tall for basketball. [Watching boxing] I thought I could actually do that, there are weight classes. I could work hard and get good at it. So, that is what I did.
RBRBoxing: How did you find your trainer?
Poe: My grandfather boxed in the Marine Corp at one point when he was in. My uncle boxes down at Hillcrest Boxing Gym. So he knew Buddy Harrison’s gym at Rosecroft Race Track and we used to walk two miles to go to the gym everyday with my brother.
RBRBoxing: Who is your trainer?
Poe: Thomas Snow is my trainer. I have known Snow for about as long as I have been boxing. Really good pro, very experienced, great guy all around.
RBRBoxing: Why did you chose boxing?
Poe: I would say watching some of the [Tyson] videos and not growing up in the most fortunate household or stuff like that. We weren’t the worst, but we weren’t the best. I saw it as a way to be like every kid wants to be rich and famous. I thought I could do that. I can fight, and get rich like that since I can’t play basketball, I’m not good. I can’t play football, I’m not that good. So that’s what made me say let me try boxing out, then I fell in love with it.
RBRBoxing: What is your end goal in boxing? Such as, become a world champion?
Poe: Of course, I feel like that is every boxer’s dream. To make the millions and be famous. I would say that is the end goal.
RBRBoxing: What do you think of the current Lightweight champions?
Poe: I think they are all pretty amazing. I think Tank [Gervonta Davis] is amazing. I think Devin Haney is amazing. I think Shakur Stevenson, is he 130 now? Shakur Stevenson, I actually sparred with him, he is amazing. There is a lot of good guys in the division.
RBRBoxing: What other big names did you spar?
Poe: I sparred Shakur Stevenson. I’ve sparred Sam Vargas, he is bigger. I sparred Goldstein with Top Rank. I sparred my cousin, Jalil Hackett. That’s all I can think of off the top of my head.
RBRBoxing: When you are sparring those guys, how intense are those sessions?
Poe: It is always intense, sometimes you’ll get nervous. It is always intense. It is a learning experience especially when you are sparring guys on a really high level. Everything is not about trying to knock each other out or who wins. It is about learning stuff, learning tricks that they do. I feel like as a boxer you should take something away from someone you spar. How I fight or my style has been picked from multiple different people that I grew up around, watching box. I do certain movements that they do or punches. One of my big inspirations and who I have learned from I would say is Dusty Harrison, Thomas Snow and another guy named Araq.
RBRBoxing: Who do you look up to currently?
Poe: When I say look up I would have to say someone I know. Dusty Harrison is a big inspiration, especially when I was younger seeing him fight at MSG and knowing where he is coming from with a similar background as me. So I would say Dusty Harrison.
RBRBoxing: What about Jamel Herring, former Marine like yourself?
Poe: Oh definitely, I would say Jamel. I don’t know him personally, so I didn’t want to say him, but for sure. Former Marine so that makes me know I can go out and get out from the Marine Corps and be a world champion too because he did it. So it is always possible.
RBRBoxing: Anything you want to say to the fans?
Poe: Come out, it is going to be a great night of boxing. There is a whole lot of talented guys. Come out and support us and watch us grow.