Enzo Calzaghe told Ringside Gavin Rees can defeat Adrien Broner
Last Updated: 14/02/13 7:08pm
Enzo Calzaghe believes his former charge Gavin Rees can upset the odds and defeat WBC lightweight champion Adrien Broner on Saturday night in Atlantic City.
Despite being a former world champion at light welterweight level and having just one defeat on his record, Rees goes into the bout as underdog against rising star Broner (25-0), who has been touted by many as 'the next Floyd Mayweather'.
"Everyone's talking so highly about Broner but once upon a time they talked highly of Jeff Lacy, and look what happened to him."
However, Calzaghe, who trained fellow Welshman Rees between 1998 and 2009, reckons the European champion can spring a surprise at Boardwalk Hall, live on Sky.
"I believe he's got a great chance," the father of Joe Calzaghe told Ringside.
"Gavin's got a great ability to absorb shots, he can fire bullets and he can throw punches in bunches.
"I've seen two clips of this Broner and, really, he didn't impress me. Everyone's talking so highly about him but once upon a time they talked highly of Jeff Lacy, and look what happened to him.
Adrien Broner v Gavin Rees
2am, Sun, Sky Sports 2 HD
"When Gavin boxed Souleymane M'Baye he was the outsider and what did he do? He performed amazingly - and the same applies on Saturday night.
"I've got real faith in him and believe there's more than a 50-50 chance for Gavin."
To succeed, though, Rees will need to take the fight to Broner, reckons Calzaghe.
"Gavin needs to really concentrate on what he did well before; he needs to focus on his speed and not slow down too much, because that plays to the strengths of the American guy.
"He mustn't change what has made him successful already - this fight is about what Gavin does well.
"He mustn't give this guy space; he needs to get on his toes and be with him all the way. Gavin has the moves, power and speed to cause him problems."
However, Jim Watt is less convinced Rees will emerge victorious against Broner, who has stopped 21 opponents so far in his blossoming career.
"It's difficult to have so much confidence when you look at Broner," he told Ringside.
"Broner looks gifted and has so much naturally: speed, power, reflexes... It's a tough, tough job for Rees.
"But Rees has been boxing almost 15 years and only lost once in that time and he's won a world title at the weight above. He deserves to be sharing a ring with Broner, he's earned it - but it would be a massive upset if he won."