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21 SEPTEMBER 2018

 

Prospect Jordan Shimmell has breakout year in 2013


American cruiserweight prospect Jordan Shimmell (12-0, 10 KO) established 2013 as his breakout year and is currently back in the gym after winning the USBO cruiserweight title during "Slugtoberfest" in Grand Rapids, MI in October. Shimmell, one of three local fighters winning USBO belts at the event, busted on to the national big man scene with a virtual shutout of the ring tested Galen Brown (41-23, 24 KO). Although he has only been pro for 18 months, he has already climbed the rankings as the 4th best American cruiserweight on boxrec.com.

 

In addition to the perfect start to his professional career, Shimmell also has a

decorated amateur career that includes a record seven Michigan State Golden Glove

championships and two National Golden Glove championships. That experience has

shown as he has made a smooth transition to the professional game, not yet having

been seriously tested in the ring.

 

Shimmell has gained a tremendous amount of experience lately, taking paid sparring

jobs with heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko, light heavyweight champion Adonis

Stevenson and light heavyweight contender Andrzej Fonfara as they prepared for highly

anticipated fights this year. A natural orthodox fighter, Shimmell was asked to go at it southpaw in these camps to mimic their lefty opponents. The world class experience has definitely paid off, as Shimmell has become noticeably more comfortable switching it up to lefty in his last few fights, making him even more dangerous in the ring.

 

Boxing writer Mike Franzak recently caught up with the busy prospect.

 

In your short time as a professional, you’ve been staying busy to say the least, with 12 fights in the past 18 months. Last month you captured the USBO cruiserweight championship. How have you been able to stay so busy and rise in the rankings so quickly?

I’ve just been trying to stay busy, fighting whenever I’m able to, as often as I’m able to. I’ve been fortunate to not have a serious injury in any of my fights so it allows me to jump right back into training and staying on the ball and making sure that I stay in shape and continue training and be ready for a fight at any time. I’ve gained a lot of experience during these past 18 months and I think it is going to help me move forward in my career.

 

You’ve also gained a tremendous amount of experience as a professional sparring partner for some of the sports biggest names. Wladamir Kiltschko. Adonis Stevensen. Andrzej Fonfara. How has that experience helped you in your ascent up the rankings?

It’s showed myself that I’m able to hang in there with the top guys. I’m in there with these guys as a southpaw, when I’m not a true southpaw and I feel that I’m still doing very well with each of those fighters. It’s ensured that at that level and I’m able to hang with those guys and hopefully in the near future be able to take on some of the guys in my weight class and win a world title.

As hard as it is to take on one of the greatest heavyweights of this generation, I imagine having to do it southpaw was a real challenge.

Oh yeah, definitely. That was my first big training camp as a sparring partner. It was different for me so I wasn’t 100% comfortable going in there southpaw, but that’s what they needed so we agreed to it. It was a learning experience and got me more comfortable fighting that style and now I’m able to use it in my own fights and I’m able to switch it up from southpaw to orthodox, whatever I need. It was a great experience being over there in Austria and participating in a training camp of that magnitude.

It seems like you were switching it up pretty frequently last fight from orthodox to southpaw. Is this something we are going to continue to see? Do you feel it throws the other fighter off balance?

 

Yeah, and just in case of a hand injury, I’m able to switch it up and use my other hand as a lead to throw off my opponent for just a second, sometimes that’s all you need, just a split second to land that shot. It gives me versatility and another tool to use if I have to change things up.

 

Working with world class boxers is nothing new to you, as you’ve been getting top notch experience since you started. Current WBO champion Peter Quillin has talked about how you used to spar when he was coming up, even when you were much younger than him. How was it working with him at such a young age?

I remember vividly sparring with Peter. Whenever we would spar I would complain about how hard he hit. I needed that experience and I’m fortunate for the experience I gained sparring with him…but I just hatted getting hit by him! And he was just as great a fighter then as he is now. I feel like those are the kind of experiences that got me to where I am at now.

 

Have you ever laced them up with Floyd? He spent a lot of time in your gym when he was coming up.

 

I never had the opportunity to get in there with Floyd Jr, but last year I was able to do a little sparring with Floyd Mayweather Sr. It’s something I will never forget. He’s such an amazing trainer and I was appreciative to gain that experience. He may be a little older these days, but he’s still able to hang in there with the best of them.

You were a heavyweight for a good portion of your amateur career and for your first 11 professional fights. You weighed 194 for this last fight, your first time at cruiserweight. Obviously the cruiserweight limit of 200 wasn’t a problem for you this time. Do you see yourself at cruiserweight for the foreseeable future?

Right now it’s just a more natural weight for me. Sometimes it’s easier to get fights at heavyweight, there’s more opponents and you have more options. I’ll go wither cruiser or heavyweight, wherever the fights are at. I think 215 is the heaviest I’ve ever been in there for a fight, but I didn’t have a problem making weight for this last fight. I’m not opposed going back to heavyweight, but it’s a more natural for me at cruiserweight right now.

You’re currently ranked 4th among American cruiserweights on boxrec.com. You’ve only been pro for 18 months, so you’ve been active to say the least. What are your plans going forward?

 

Like I said, I always stay ready and if a fight arises where it’s right and I’m able to take it, I will take it as long as I’m healthy. I’m just staying ready. I’m always ready for a fight. It’s been a busy year in 2013 and we are looking to continue to build on that momentum in 2014 and hopefully work towards getting a title shot in the near future.

 

 




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