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Press Release: 16th December 2008

Fighting Talk From Steve 'USS' Cunningham In First Radio Interview Since Loss Off Crown

Former IBF cruiserweight world champion, Steve 'USS' Cunningham, gave his first radio interview since losing his crown by split decision after this year's most exciting and action packed fight, one that most are calling The Fight Of The Year, on December 11th to Tomasz 'Goral' Adamek. Steve returned as a guest of boxing expert Michael Cassell on his popular AFB radio show - Philadelphia Boxing Report.

Steve was particularly thrilled that his first radio interview was on the show as the audience is mainly American military personnel based around the world. Being a former Navy Aircraft Re-fueler on both the USS America and the USS Enterprise he understands the importance of this particular radio network, as to many of those based overseas it is their only link to home news.

From the start of the show Michael made the point of how spectacular the fight, broadcast live on Versus, was and how everybody had been talking about it. He went on to inform Steve that ESPN, amongst many broadcasters to do so, made the fight the lead item on Friday morning and that even on 'Football Friday' it stayed high on the discussion list throughout the afternoon and evening, something, that as far as he is aware, that had never been achieved before, even with boxing matches featuring 'household' names.

He then went on to ask Steve why, as he was the IBF champion, the fight was in Adamek's 'backyard' in Newark, New Jersey and not his home town of Philadelphia, to which Steve answered. "This wasn't really an issue, but the powers to be thought it would be a better spot, for reasons I don't know why, I live in Philly. You know, Adamek came from Poland and moved to Jersey City and there's a huge Polish Community in New Jersey."

Michael then went on to say how that was so obvious on the night as the arena was a sea of red and white and the crowd cheered anything that Adamek did. Steve agreed. "Tomasz could have done a handstand and the crowd would have cheered. Everything he did they were screaming and clapping."

Moving on to the subject of the scoring, Michael said that he felt Steve had won virtually every round as well as leading in round two, four and eight until the knockdowns. Steve responded "Exactly, round four I was going for the knockdown, I could smell it so I just kept going but he wouldn't go down so I backed off, I was jabbing and he countered and I went down. I jumped back up, right away, I wasn't hurt. You know, that should have been scored a 10-9 round as It was clearly being a 10-8 round to me until then. That one point could have made so much difference.

One of the knockdowns was a slip. I was wobbling from a good hit but it was a slip. The ring was still a little wet from the previous fight as I stepped back I slipped, it's a shame as I jumped straight up but my glove touched the canvas.

When we went into this fight we had our friends and family praying with us, we had our church praying for us to be victorious in Jesus' name, that's why I was able to get up from the knockdowns, they were totally flash knockdowns, they didn't hurt me. I put on a great performance, one that I believe should have been enough to get me a close decision or at least a draw."

Michael agreed, he then went on to criticize judge John Stewart from New Jersey who he said had given a outrageous score of 116-110 in favor of Adamek. He then asked Steve why there were two judges from New Jersey, the other, Shafeeq Rashada, also scored the bout in favor of Adamek, to which Steve replied. "Originally, the excellent Julie Lederman was supposed to be one of the judges but for some reason she was replaced." Michael pointed out that Ms Lederman was officiating on the Holt vs Hopkins fight in Atlantic City only two days later, and questioned the reason for the switch before going on to state "In my humble opinion that judge (John Stewart) should never be allowed to judge a fight again, That was a disgrace for a better word. He should be ashamed of himself. Every week we have a segment on the Philadelphia Boxing Report called the 'Moron Report' and he definitely makes the 'Moron Report' this week."

Throughout the interview Michael stated that the fight was not only "Fight Of The Year" but that he had been getting inundated with calls and e.mails from friends and his listeners asking when will there be a rematch. When Michael asked Steve this as a direct question, Steve answered. "We hurried up to the press conference after the fight and the first thing I asked was if they wanted a rematch, everyone demanded a rematch.

The fight was a mandatory and as such Adamek doesn't have to accept a rematch, it's his prerogative. But a fight like that demands a rematch. Tomasz made it clear he'd talk rematch if there was big money and television. He made it clear, hey, I don't blame him, he gets the bigger share, he's the champion now. I know I want one, I want my belt back.

If anyone that's listening wants a rematch write or call Showtime and HBO and tell them you want one as it's up to them and the promoters working together."

Michael reiterated what is needed to make a rematch happen and urged listeners to write and call HBO, Showtime, Don King and Kathy Duva at Main Events and start demanding a rematch before thanking Steve for taking part in the show.

 

The full interview is available at: www.philaboxingreport.com/AFBARCHIVES.html

or downloadable version in mp3 format at: www.philaboxingreport.com/12142008showsteve.mp3

For news on Steve 'USS' Cunningham - www.usscunningham.com

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