Sean Monaghan has been waiting for many moons, like, years worth, for a step up fight, a truly meaningful scrap.
It's here– versus Marcus Browne July 15 at the refurbished Nassau Coliseum in Hempstead, LI; it's not the main event of a Lou Dibella/PBC promotion, portions of which will run on Fox, but the stakes are immense for the Islander.
The 35 year old hitter with a 28-0 (17 KOs; debuted pro in 2010) record checked in with NYF about the opportunity.
“I’m training like a gladiator for this one. Way more. My mind is working overtime this one. It’s the most serious fight of my career and I haven’t felt this way in a long time, threatened, or excited. My performances have suffered as a result…I’ve been too casual, and there were a couple duds in my last couple fights, this time I’m totally mentally up for this one.”
Before we delved into the match, the Long Island versus Staten Island angle, I did ask him why we aren’t seeing an all Long Island light heavyweight showdown, Monaghan versus Joe Smith?
“I don’t know, man,” Monaghan said. “I was a free agent, we were available. Top Rank and then Dibella tried to make the fight, the common denominator was Smith promoter Joe Deguardia, I guess. It’s a fight me and Joe Smith both want. Deguardia I guess is trying to make the most of Smith’s rise..it’s a dangerous fight with me, and the money wasn’t there. But he’s fighting Sullivan Barrera and me versus Marcus..if we both win, that one is even bigger!”
Back to the task at hand….
I am curious, is he the underdog in this one? “Well, not in my mind, in the fight game landscape they assume he’s better. And he might be the better boxer but he’s not the better fighter! There’s no mystery in breaking this down..I will have to break him down, drag him into a war. Hey, in a different ideal situation, I wouldn’t be fighting a guy I’m friends with. We’re not best friends, but we’ve always gotten along. We’ve sparred more times than I can remember, and there’s mutual respect. Now, if he crosses the line in the promotion, it might bring out the darker side of me. And once the bell rings, it’s strictly business.”
Yeah, it’s not like these guys have done some rounds. They have worked together for a LONG time. How long? “We’ve been sparring for about ten years,” Monaghan said. “Like 40, 50 times. We’ve both gotten much better.
And how have those sessions gone? “If I’m being honest, Marcus is the style I least like to spar. He has a tricky style, fast hands, boxes, doesn’t like to FIGHT that much. Now, I don’t show everything when we spar. I will work on my weaknesses. He’s had good days, I’ve had good days. I know he has hand speed, that concerns me a little bit. I have my hands full…but this is top level boxing, this is what I’ve wanted. It’s go time! I’d imagine the winner is very close to a title shot. We are very close to that now! This is a very risky fight. I’ve had people criticize it, tell me there’s no need for two of the best from NY to fight each other. And no, being friends, it’s not ideal, if the money were the same..but it is what it is. Yeah, it will be hard to replace Marcus for sparring, but we will get some lefties, and I’m soooo ready to go.”