By Andy Rivera: Former WBA Jr middleweight champion Austin Trout has gone back to his roots in the hope regaining a piece of the Jr middleweight pie when he faces IBF titleholder Jerrret Hurd this coming Saturday as part of a triple title card featuring championship defenses by Erislandy Lara and Jarmell Charlo in separate bouts.
Trout, who has been out of the ring for 17 months since dropping a hard fought decision to Charlo’s brother Jarmal, has returned to his hometown of Las Cruces, New Mexico.
In the past Trout has moved camps to Houston, Texas and Washington DC, but it’s home where he feels more comfortable.
“It’s back to where I won the title, it was time to refocus and get back to the basics on what made me a champion.” Stated Trout. “I feel comfortable and relaxed.
Trout’s trainer Louie Burke also believes Trout being home has been a plus. “He is closer to his family and has his kids around.” Says Burke. “Austin is big on family and is always with his kids and it was harder when he was away from them in previous camps.”
Trout has fought a who’s who in the Jr middleweight division, conquering future hall of fame champion Miguel Cotto in winning the WBA strap, then losing it to media darling and WBC champion Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez in a unification fight. A fight some think he may have eked out if not for a knockdown in the middle rounds.
Trout didn’t hold back in his next fight taking on Erislandy Lara, again dropping a close decision. He then went on a four fight winning streak before losing to Charlo in May of 2016.
Trout again was offered a chance at a title against Hurd, 20-0. Trout said when a title fight was offered he said yes no matter how long he had been out.
“I was always ready to fight for the title, so when the call came I said yes.” said Trout, 30-3 (17kos). “I know in boxing you never know when your going to get a chance again to fight for a title, so I will take every chance we get.”
Trout also doesn’t want to leave his fate in the hands of the judges amidst the recent scoring with the title fight between GGG and Canelo and his training teammate Abie Han, who was on the short end of what many felt a fight Han had won against against J’Leon Love. The fight was ruled a draw after a clash of heads the fight went to the scorecards.
“I don’t trust the judges, I feel you have to dominate where there is no doubt or stop them.” Says Trout. “I’ve been on the short end of close fights that I know I need to dominate and not let it be in the hands of the judges.”
Burke feels the same in making the best of the opportunity and hopefully taking it out of the hands of the judges. “In boxing it’s hard when they now have an A side and a B side, when it should be just two fighters giving it their best, but boxing has changed from the old days and we look to have Austin not to have it go to the judges if at all possible.”
Both Trout and Burke also agree in making it the best of the opportunity. “You never know if someone never gets another title shot or if an injury happens and one can’t fight again.” Says Burke.
“That’s why we will win the title and then try to unify all the belts” insisted Trout.