The journey continues for undefeated 2008 U.S. Olympian Demetrius "Boo Boo" Andrade (19-0, 13 KOs) as he prepares for his November 9th world title fight in Corpus Christi, Texas, against 2004 U.S. Olympian Vanes "Nightmare" Martirosyan (33-0-1, 21 KOs) for the vacant World Boxing Organization (WBO) junior middleweight championship.
Andrade vs. Martirosyan will be part of an HBO tripleheader, headlined by the WBO junior lightweight title fight between defending champion Roman Martinez and challenger Mikey Garcia, and a rematch between former world champions Nonito Donaire and Vic Darchinyan.
The 25-year-old Andrade was originally slated to challenge then WBO champion Zaurbek Baysangurov last July. The Russian pulled out of the fight with an injury and was stripped of his title belt, leaving the world title vacant to set-up the Nov. 9 showdown between the top two rated WBO 154-pounders, respectively, Martirosyan and Andrade.
Andrade, fighting out of Providence (RI), has been at training camp in Atlanta with his father/head trainer, Paul Andrade. They have brought in a half-dozen sparring partners, mostly tall with quick hand speed, to prepare for Martirosyan.
"This title fight is part of my journey," the 2007 AIBA World Championships gold medalist Andrade said. "When I first started boxing, I said that I'd fight in The Olympics, become world champion, and retire undefeated. I will become the first boxer from the 2008 U.S. Olympic Boxing Team to become world champion as a professional. This is the opportunity I've waited for my whole life. It is going to open my door to stardom, letting boxing fans know I'm here. This is it!
"I was supposed to fight for the world title in July but I believe everything happens for a reason. I've had more time to work with my dad. I'm stronger, faster and this camp has been better organized and structured than any I've had in the past. I'm growing and developing all the time."
While Martirosyan has been talking about fights with Saul "Canelo" Alvarez and others, Andrade has fully concentrated on Martirosyan and the task at hand. Their only common opponent is Angel Hernandez, who Martirosyan defeated by 10-round decision in 2008, and Andrade stopped in the second round of his last fight this past January.
"He can talk all he wants about fighting other guys," Andrade remarked, "but if he thinks fighting me is going to be a walk in the park, he's going to be in big trouble. I'm coming for him and he doesn't know how bad that's going to be for him.
"He's already had 34 fights and this is his first title fight, which says something about him. He doesn't do anything great. He's not slick, his feet are all over the place, and he jumps in to throw punches. He walks in, loading up to throw big punches. He wasn't impressive against (Erislandy) Lara or even Joe Greene."
Team Andrade hopes Martirosyan is looking past the slick southpaw. "This is going to be a tough fight and we respect Vanes," Andrade's manager Ed Farris added, "but Alvarez shouldn't waste his time thinking about a fight with Martirosyan. We're confident that Demetrius will be walking out of the ring with the WBO belt on November 9th.