A late entry into boxing at the age of 24, Derrick “Take it to the Bank” Webster (28-1, 14 KOs) has continually developed under the tutelage of head trainer Denny Brown since the duo began working together when he was still in the amateur game. The unbreakable bond between them has since driven a steady incline up the professional boxing rankings, and they now step onto a huge stage as Webster takes on Lennox Allen (21-0-1, 14 KOs) for the WBA Gold Super Middleweight Title on Friday night at the Grand Casino in Hinckley, Minnesota.
“I feel amazing. I have been waiting my whole life for an opportunity like this,” said Webster after he stepped off the scales at 165.2 pounds on Thursday afternoon. “In the eyes of a lot of people, I am not supposed to be here, but I am here. I started this boxing thing at 24-years-old and didn’t turn pro until 2009, and here I am ranked in the world. I had an amazing training camp. I am injury free, my mind is focused, and everything is on point. I really am very appreciative to be here.”
As mentioned, Webster has spent the entirety of his professional career under the guidance of head trainer Denny Brown, who has been the one constant and easily the most dependable person for him during that time. The two have become so close that Webster not only considers him family but also views him as a father figure.
“Denny is like a father to me. He started as a friend and became a father to me,” Webster remarked. “This belt would be as much his as it would be mine. He never wants any personal recognition. His recognition is my success. He always tells me to beat everybody with success. Even when I blow a guy out of the water, he has never really been satisfied because he knows we had higher marks to reach. He wanted us to be a world champion, and here is our opportunity to become a mandatory for an amazing, life-changing payday. He deserves this just as much as I do, and I am not sure if I want it more for me or if I want it more for him (laughs). We both want it together.”
As for his bout on Friday night, Webster says that boxing fans can expect the absolute best version of himself when he steps into the ring.
“People are going to see the best Derrick Webster that they have ever seen,” he confirmed. “They are going to see boxing. They are going to see movement. They are going to see brawling. They are going to see my inside game. They are going to see me thinking. They are going to see the maturity that Derrick Webster has developed over these 13 years in boxing. And they are going to see the hunger and eagerness that I have attained over this journey to get here. Everybody is going to be on the edge of their seats.”
Currently ranked no. 8 in the world and the top-ranked super middleweight in the country by the WBA (Allen is ranked no. 9), Webster stands 6-foot-4 and is a slick southpaw who has lived in the gym throughout his entire boxing career.
“I weighed in at 165 pounds, and I have been on weight for a week. That is a disciplined fighter for you,” he stated. “I was eating breakfast this morning and watched my opponent go work out to make weight. I am so ready. My family deserves this. My kids deserve this. Tiffany and my in-laws deserve this. This is what it is all about. This is an opportunity to silence a lot of haters. That is not a main motivation for me, but it comes with the territory. For all of those people who have never believed in me, I am about to wake them up. That belt will be coming home. I don’t want to be over the top and say that it is going to be an early night, but we have trained to make it an early night.”
Webster, who is signed to Greg Cohen Promotions, will take on Allen as a showcase bout to a Rob Brant vs. Khasan Baysangurov scrap for the WBA Regular Middleweight Title. Webster vs. Allen will air live on ESPN+ (sign up for a seven-day free trial), with Brant vs. Baysangurov broadcasting on ESPN.