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DeGuardia

Promoter Joe DeGuardia Interview: Chris Algieri and More

By Robert Brizel, Head Real Combat Media Boxing Correspondent

 *Photo courtesy Matt Tucker Photography

President and CEO of Star Boxing, Joe DeGuardia gave Real Combat Media an exclusive interview in the press room at Barclays Center in Brooklyn after his fighter Chris Algieri lost by fifth round stoppage in the main event to Errol Spence Jr. on April 16, 2016. Algieri subsequently expressed his disappointment with his 325 thousand dollar purse after a 50-50 split with his promoter Joe DeGuardia, and said he deserved a 70-30 split. DeGuardia got Algieri’s career going by signing him and substantially investing in Algieri’s career, and got him a world title shot with Provodnikov thanks to a three fight option with Art Palillo of Banner Promotions. DeGuardia has offered Algieri a bigger percentage of the pot in return for a contract extension. Algieri and his attorney, to date, did not take the offer.

 

Algieri’s argument remains he is earning less than DeGuardia because he is footing the bill for his trainer, assistant trainer, cut man, strength coach, physical therapist, attorney, accountant, camp coordinator, and housing and food expenses for his sparring partners.

 

Robert Brizel: “Question-I know you have been with (promoting for Chris) Algieri for a while, and he’s had a big heart, and (now) all of this. Were you disappointed with the outcome tonight against Errol Spence Jr.? Did you feel Chris could have done better?”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “Listen, he was in the ring. Things got off right. He’s really a good fighter. As to whether he could have done better? He was in with a tough guy. He tried his best.”

 

Robert Brizel: “When Chris went down in the fifth round, do you feel he should have been given another chance? Do you think it was a good stoppage?”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “He did get up. The referee stopped the fight. I’m not going to second guess the referee. Experienced referee, Benjy Esteves, one of the best in the business, and he (was) in there, he saw him (Chris), he saw it close, and I know Chris was limping (at that point) so his knee wasn’t that good anyway (at the point Algieri’s bout with Spence was stopped). So, the referee stopped the fight, and it’s not for me to question the stoppage.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Where is the future for Algieri now? Do you think he will fight again? Or where are you with him at this point?”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “Look, he’s certainly a marketable fighter. He’s shown he’s got tremendous heart. He’s good at his craft. He’s got no amateur background. MMA, but that’s not a boxing background. Considering where he (Chris) has come since he’s turned pro, he’s made tremendous progress. And right now, in his last three fights, he’s scored Amir Khan, Ruslan Provodnikov, Manny Pacquiao. Now, Errol Spence. These are top fighters.”

 

Robert Brizel: “you think he (Chris) has fought up (fought higher caliber opposition better than him) too much?”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “He’s progressed admirably throughout his career. He’s fought the caliber of fighters (progressively which over the course of time) he was supposed to fight. He went to the top, and when you get to the top, you try to stay at the top. So, that’s the real purpose of being a lead fighter.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Do you think you’ll bring another fighter in your stable of world ranked class contenders into a world title fight in the near future?”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “You know that every one of them (signed with Star Boxing) is knocking at the door. Super welterweight Demetrius Andrade has a big fight coming up (against Willie Nelson). Super lightweight Cletus Seldin is ranked eighth in the world. Light heavyweight Joe Smith has a huge surprise (a major fight) coming up. All of those guys I’ve just mentioned are knocking at the door (for a world title bout in the near future).”

 

Robert Brizel: “Would you like to bring these showcase fighters in a major bout at Barclay Center in the near future?”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “Barclays is a beautiful arena. I love coming here. We’ve had Chris (Algieri) here for four fights in a row. So certainly I love to come in to Brooklyn. How could I not love to be here? I’m a New Yorker!”

 

Robert Brizel: “By the way, you were in a car accident awhile back? Everything all right? We were all worried about you.”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “I’m fine. Look here. You know what? I guess the big man upstairs looked over me.”

 

Robert Brizel: “There’s an old movie ‘Somebody Up There Likes Me’ so somebody up there likes you. You saw a strong Polish crowd here tonight (at Barclays). Do you think the strong Polish crowd adds to the competitive spirit? You have seem them here at several cards.”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “The Polish crowd is great! They sing, they yell. Their music is in the background. It’s something special. It brings vibrancy. You want to see a vibrant, enthusiastic crowd that wants to be there. They make themselves be heard. It makes for a better fight.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Do you think Chris (Algieri) will turn around and take another fight, and not take any time off? What were your feelings from Chris after the fight?”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “Well, I just spoke to him (Chris), and he went to the hospital to have knee checked up on, and his eyes checked up on.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Which knee was it (which was giving him trouble)?”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “You know what? I’m not sure. Chris is a fierce competitor, he obviously wants to win. We’re gonna regroup. We’re gonna get together next week, and figure out the next steps for his next (proposed) fights.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Are you in favor of doing any world title fights out on Long Island?”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “To me, the Paramount (Theatre where we do our shows) on Long Island is a breeding ground, It’s a perfect location, I love it. It’s a perfect pathway to the Barclays Center. We did (a show at) the Paramount last month, we have another show next week. We’ve been doing the Paramount about every month now. The Paradise Theatre in the Bronx became a church, so we can’t do shows at the Paradise anymore.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Let’s talk about BB King’s and Lou DiBella. You’ve spoken with Lou a lot. Any plans to do any shows with Lou in the future?”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “We’ve co-promoted some fights. We’ve done some at the Barclays and BB King’s together.”

Robert Brizel: “What’s up with (your heavyweight) Vinny Maddalone? I covered his last fight at BB King against Joe Stofle on a DiBella card. I stood up on the press table and yelled at Steve Smoger to stop it, it was a bad matchup (at the time, and Smoger did stop it, right away, before the mismatched Stofle, taking an immediate beating on the ropes in his own corner in the first round, got seriously hurt).”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “I’m getting together with Vinny tomorrow, we’re going to have a big dinner. We’ll discuss whether he wants to fight again or not. We’ll see.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Vinny would make a great trainer. He’s been in with some of the best, though he never got a world title opportunity. Jean-Marc Mormeck among them.”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “He’s fought the best: Mormeck, Evander Holyfield, Ice Cole, Tyson Fury, and Tomasz Adamek, five world champions. Vinny is very likeable out of the ring. I’d like to see how he feels.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Maybe Vinny will do a bye-bye, a farewell bout.”

 

Joe DeGuardia: “Maybe Vinny will do a bye-bye bout. We’ll see how he feels. Time will tell.”

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