News April 2019

David Price talks expectations, Sauerland and the future


by @shaun_brown

Once bitten…

23 Feb 2013 and the David Price runaway train, next stop a town called Klitschko, is derailed by an American ‘Tiger’ called Tony Thompson. Shock is carried by fans from the Echo Arena back to their homes. It’s okay though. Fear not. He is to Price what McCall was to Lewis. It happens.

Twice shy…

Why? That was a freak result, surely? Time to right that wrong. 6 Jul 2013, Britain expects, Frank Maloney expects! Let’s get the show back on the road. The fifth round this time as opposed to the second just five months earlier. Another stunned silence in Liverpool. The Price Was Wrong. A Hard Day’s Night etc etc. A career in tatters.
Third time lucky?

“Unless there would be an incentive to fight Tony Thompson again I don’t see the point really. I already made a mistake of going back after the first fight!” David Price has a smile back on his face.

Time to get away from it all and rebuild. Remove the pressure, the expectation and let’s focus on bringing Price back into the heavyweight fold slowly but surely.

Sign here please…………………………….

Regards, The Sauerland Brothers.

When the clock struck midnight on New Year’s Eve it was welcomed with great big open arms from David Price. 2013 was gone and long forgotten.

“As soon as the clock stuck twelve I just got a real sense of optimism and I’m looking forward to the year ahead,” he told Livefight.

“Nothing good happened in 2013 apart from signing with Sauerland at the end of the year. It was a terrible year.”

A fresh start has also signalled the arrival of a fresh face with the arrival of American trainer Tommy Brooks. The man who has worked with Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield and both Klitschko brothers is charged with bringing one of Liverpool’s favourite sons back near the front of the heavyweight pack. However it might have been Adam Booth, not Brooks, had things worked out on the “business” side of things. Whatever the disagreement was between Booth and Sauerland, Price didn’t see the point in discussing it. He’s moving on, not looking back.

“To anyone looking in from the outside it probably looks like everything’s been all over the place,” said Price.

But after various chops and changes is the 30-year-old now finally settled with his latest corner man?

“It’s not as chaotic as you think it is. I am settled, I’m settled in the gym too,” he answered.

“Me and Tommy are still getting to know each other obviously but that’s a natural course. He was someone that Frank Maloney (Price’s former promoter) always wanted to bring over to work with but it never happened for whatever reason. He was on the shortlist when I was looking for a new trainer. I always wanted to try out with him because of his own experience but also his experience with heavyweights. So it seemed like a natural thing to at least try.

“We’ve been working for four weeks so far and it’ll take time to start seeing the results of what we’re doing but even at this stage, and with what I’m capable of on ability alone, that’s going to be enough to see me through this next fight. Then hopefully we can get some of the things going that we’ve been trying in the gym.”

And that next fight will witness the first professional contest for Price on foreign soil. His new promoters, Sauerland, are describing it as a “world tour”. The first leg kicks off in Stuttgart against 35-year-old Konstantin Airich (19-7-2, 15 KOs) after original opponent, Evgeny Orlov, had pulled out. On paper, Price should be getting Airich out of there early doors but this is part of phase one in the rebuilding of a career that once looked over. But thankfully Price’s confidence has returned.

“I’m excited about getting back in the ring,” he said.

“I’ve seen Alrich knocking round for a few years in a few different fights and he’s been in with a few different names. I’ve seen tapes of him, it’ll be a good challenge for me. It’s a good fight for me to come back.”

And what should the fans expect from David Price 2.0?

“(Puffs out his cheeks) I don’t know. It depends. I can’t tell them what to expect, they’ll probably have their own expectations. If they’ve got expectations similar of me in my last fight then they’d be wrong to think that for sure.

“It’s obvious that I’ve got to focus on one fight at a time but the plan is to fight next week (Jan 25) then the beginning of March or sometime in March. And again maybe before the summer break and then two times before the end of the year but that’s in an ideal world without injuries or anything else. That’s what the plan is, five times this year.”

Price will be on the undercard of the cruiserweight cult hero, Marco Huck as the “Kapt’n” aims to put some doubts to bed when he rematches Firat Arslan in defence of his WBO world title. A reign that is now entering its fifth year. For Huck, the adulation from his fans in Germany is something that can carry him along in a fight and assist greatly when he bombards his opponents with on-rushing one-two assaults. For Price, he’s glad not to be the focus of attention. Whilst he revels in fighting in front of his passionate fans in Liverpool, such a weight removed from his shoulders is something he believes will benefit him when he returns to the UK to fight, hopefully, next year.

“There will be a weight off for me because for a start I won’t be a top of the bill fighter. I’m not the main event so straight away there’s something off me,” he said.

“The expectations that people once had of me, they won’t have of me anymore. To be honest I would rather that it was the other way because I’d rather people were expecting things from me because that means you’re doing something right. But I’ve still got that expectation in myself. It’s not like I’ll be getting in the ring not taking the fights seriously. But I am a lot more relaxed and we’re ten days out from the fight. To be honest it was never an issue until the last fight and the reason for that was because of what happened in the first fight. I got stopped in the first fight and everything just got blown out of proportion in my head in the build-up to the second fight. And it was a disaster to lose type of thing and it was just that one fight where I felt that, the pressure. Before that I was loving it, enjoying it and revelling in it. It was a massive compliment to me having that much pressure put on me. As it stands now the pressure is off, I suppose, but I want that pressure back. I want people to be expecting things of me and it’s just a matter of me putting in a performance over 2-3 fights and people will see what I’m capable of again.”

And Price is even more relaxed now that he’s facing an orthodox fighter after facing lefty’s in three of his last four fights.

“I’m really looking forward to getting in the ring with an orthodox fighter. Not only are you fighting southpaws but you’re preparing in the gym for a southpaw, you’re sparring southpaws and you forget what it’s like to fight a conventional opponent. When it comes down to the ring and sparring someone with what you’re more or less used to then you start finding things a lot easier. That last fight, I’m pretty convinced, was a blessing and I’ve learned an awful lot from it. Tony Thompson is a really good fighter, a clever old fighter and he taught me a lesson. It was a painful one but I’m over it now. It’s gone. I’ve got plenty to look forward to this year.”

There are no goals for Price and his new team in 2014. Regaining confidence is paramount but repaying the faith given to him by Sauerland will be another. When the German based promotional machine made their move to sign the former English, British and Commonwealth heavyweight champion a few eyebrows were raised. But scepticism was scarce as the majority of people in boxing tipped it to be a good move for all involved. But what made Price choose them over other outfits?

“For me, I like to think outside the box a bit. It’s alright to do what everyone else is doing. As far as what they could do what other promoters couldn’t, well good promoters can do the same thing but I got the feeling that these people had a belief in me that others might not have. They’ve seen me in a different environment from my last two fights, they’ve seen me in camp in Germany with a couple of their fighters and they know what the ability situation is with me. When I met up with them, I met Kalle, I’d known Nisse but I met Kalle in London and I just got a really good vibe off them straight away. And the plan they set out for me suited me with the timing and everything else to get out on the continent and have a couple of fights abroad and then coming back to the UK after rebuilding a little bit. I just think it fell into place nicely for me and it jumped off the page when I was considering my options. I think it’s a great move for me and I’m really, really pleased with it.”

Price, the boxer, describes 2013 as a “write-off”. His job in the hurt business took something of a battering but in the face of victory or defeat, the friendly Scouse giant always produces honesty with his words and always has one eye on the outside world. Two bad days at the office might have been spread over several calendar months but Price realises that he’s better off than those less fortunate.

“At the end of the day I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I lost two fights last year but there’s a lot of people in life worse off than me. In life in general I’m happy. I’ve got a great family, my kids are healthy, I’ve got food on the table and a roof over my head so I can’t complain.”

But back at his day job there have been significant developments in his division. The dominance of the Klitschko’s has been halved in two with big brother, Vitali, seeking fights in politics rather than in the ring. Wladimir remains and will no doubt look for a route to tie up the WBC title now that his brother has finally left it behind. America has something to get excited about, potentially, in the shape of Deontay Wilder. Tyson Fury and Dereck Chisora may well be about to star in their own sequel and 2012 Olympic Gold Medallist Anthony Joshua has Sky Sports licking their lips.

For now, it will have to be one fight at a time for David Price but that doesn’t stop him commenting on a scene that he hopes to have another impact on in due course.

“I think with Vitali stepping aside it’s a blessing for everyone including the fans if anything more for the fans because it’s going to make more competitive fights for the title unless Wladimir doesn’t get it. It’s going to make for competition and that’s what the heavyweight division has been lacking while Vitali and Wladimir have been dominating. It just opens it up a little bit and you’re going to see some really exciting fights and I’ve got every intention of being involved in them.

And for the rookie, Anthony Joshua, the been there done that Price had this piece of advice for him.

“I can give him advice from the viewpoint of everyone’s behind you and wants you to do well but then it can all just end. The wheels can come off and you have to re-group. You’ve just got to go with the flow and enjoy it and take each fight as it comes. Never look past the next fight.”

And after only 17 fights there speaks a voice of experience.

Newsletters Signup