Jack Massey has questioned Lawrence Okolie’s hunger ahead of their British and Commonwealth Cruiserweight title showdown at Manchester Arena on Saturday July 6, shown live on Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the US.
Okolie had previously admitted that his heart was telling him to take a leap up in levels to fight WBA World Champion Dennis Lebedev in his next fight, but talk of the shock World title fight fell away after the Hackney man teamed up with new trainer Shane McGuigan.
Massey has been vocal in his pursuit of 2016 Olympian Okolie and the undefeated 26-year-old from Chapel-en-le-Frith is promising to shine after finally landing his first major title opportunity on the big stage. A win over Okolie would propel him to the top of the domestic Cruiserweight pile and ‘One Smack’ believes his title shot has come at the perfect time.
“We’ve wanted this fight for a long time so when I got my opportunity, I grabbed it with both f****** hands,” said Massey. “I’ve seen a few people knocking me for getting a shot at the belts but it’s time to let everyone know who I am. If they don’t know who I am now, then they definitely will after this fight. This is my time to shine.
“I’ve been in the gym since my last fight in March so we’ve had great preparation for this. I’m always in the gym grinding away, you’ve got to be ready for these opportunities when they present themselves. You never know what’s going to come up and I’ve got my chance on July 6.
“There’s no doubt that he’s had better opposition than me. This is a big step up for me but I’m ready for it. We’ve had a bit of back and forth on social media but it’s just banter isn’t it. He says that I’ve been giving him sh*t on Twitter but it’s important to remember he was the first one to do it. He was calling me out after his third fight.
“I’ve got it all to gain here. To me, it seems like he doesn’t like getting hit and he won’t like it when I connect with him. I don’t think he’s ever has been hit as hard as I hit in a fight. They’re looking past me a bit definitely. I’m hungry and I’m on my way up. He’s had the big fights and got a bit of money in his pocket and I’m still driving a Fiat Punto about. He had his eyes on other fights but I’m hungry for this and I’m ready to go.
“I’ve only gone eight rounds once and that’s it. I’ve done six rounds a few times. I don’t think it’s going to go the distance though. I’m looking to put it on him. I think I’ll be too explosive for him when I let them hands go. There’ll be punches in bunches and I’ll let them hands fly. I’m going to be smart about it and take my time to find those little pockets and openings. As the rounds go by I’ll get on the inside and work him.”
Okolie vs. Massey is part of a huge night of boxing in Manchester where Scott Fitzgerald (13-0, 9 KOs) defends his WBA International Super-Welterweight title against former World title challenger Brian Rose (31-5-1, 8 KOs) in a huge Preston vs. Blackpool Lancashire derby, Felix Cash (11-0, 7 KOs) defends his Commonwealth Middleweight crown against Bolton’s Jack Cullen (16-1, 7 KOs) and Anthony Fowler (9-1, 8 KOs) returns after his first pro defeat and Sheffield amateur star Dalton Smith looks to improve to 2-0 , with more exciting additions to the card to follow.
Tickets priced £40, £60, £100 and £200 (VIP) are available to purchase now via StubHub (www.stubhub.co.uk), Manchester Arena via ticketmaster (www.ticketmaster.co.uk) and Matchroom Boxing (www.matchroomboxing.com).