Brandon Rios inside of the Robert Garcia Boxing Academy in Oxnard, Calif. (Photo: Chris Robinson – www.HustleBoss.com)
By Chris Robinson
It’s hard to believe that the Manny Pacquiao-Brandon Rios fight was officially announced in early May, over six months ago from today.
It’s been a long and winding camp for Rios, who kicked off a light version of his training regimen in early July before turning up the heat come August.
Recent weeks inside of the Robert Garcia Boxing Academy have seen Rios go out all in sparring as the intensity continued to build, with much of the hard work now in his rearview.
The Kansas-born brawler and his team, led by trainer Robert Garcia, will be leaving America for Macau this Tuesday and for Rios, the trip can’t come soon enough.
“I’m ready to go to China actually,” Rios stated. “I’m ready for the fight. I’m just ready to leave.”
More than anything, Rios insisted that his biggest issue was adapting to the style of a lefty. After some tough rounds with upcoming prospects Erik De Leon, Rashad Hughes, and Karim ‘KC’ Martinez, Rios finally feels on point.
“At first I wasn’t really ready,” the former lightweight champ stated. “I wanted to get used to a southpaw. Now I’ve already got the hang of fighting a southpaw now. Now I’m just ready for the fight. It’s been a long training camp and we’ve done excellent work. We’ve just done great work in the gym and we’re just ready.”
For Rios and Garcia, this has been quite the journey. Having been connected to one another dating back to Rios’ amateur days, the two men know each other in and out.
And despite all of those years in the bank, Rios insists that he has never grown weary of the man who he loves like a brother.
“When you have love for people and you see them as family, you don’t get tired of your family,” Rios stated. “For real, you don’t get tired of your family. This is a big family to me. I don’t get tired of my people.”
Rios will be squaring off with Pacquiao inside of the Cotai Arena in Macau, China two weekends from now.
When asked if he feels the experience will be any different fighting away from home, Rios reflected back to his first trip to China during his press tour with Pacquiao.
“When I went China the first time it was awesome, just being in China,” Rios revealed. “I’ve never been to China before so I wanted to go. I’m not for sure, but I remember a Chinese guy telling me that they don’t like Pacquiao over there. Chinese don’t like the Philippines sometimes. I don’t know if it’s true or not.
“But a Chinese guy came up to me and said ‘I don’t like Pacquiao. I want you to kick his ass.’ He told me that. It was awesome,” Rios added.
CHECK BELOW FOR more updates from the boxing world…
Nonito Donaire vs. Vic Darchinyan II Offical Weigh-in from Corpus Christi, Tex. ahead of HBO rematch
Mikey Garcia ripped and ready for battle vs. Roman ‘Rocky’ Martinez [Offical Weigh-in]
EXCLUSIVE: Vanes Martirosyan and Demetrius Andrade nearly come to blows at their weigh-in
Nonito Donaire Sr. believes Vic Darchinyan is a worse fighter than when he first fought Nonito
Brandon Rios says people in China don’t like Manny Pacquiao
Marcos Maidana on Broner’s training clip, his sparring with Steve Forbes, and finding a way to win
Roger Mayweather Mailbag Vol. 1: Floyd the best of all time? Floyd vs. Tommy Hearns, and more
Marcos Maidana’s sparring partners set ahead of clash with Adrien Broner [CR’s Commentary]
Ana Julaton on her victory over Perla Hernandez, training with Roger Mayweather, and future options
Floyd Mayweather Sr. Mailbag Vol. 1: Floyd’s sparring w/ Spadafora, Muhammad Ali, training Roger
Evgeny Gradovich continues to grind for the Billy Dib rematch; more hard work at the RGBA
J’Leon Love mitt work with Rafael Ramos as Dec. 6 Mayweather Promotions card nears
Naazim Richardson discusses Gennady Golovkin vs. Floyd Mayweather, Andre Ward, and Hopkins
Behind the scenes with Roberto ‘La Amenaza’ Garcia in Texas during his recent victory over Smith
Chris Robinson can be reached at Trimond@aol.com