Underdog Gorman looking for Ruiz-style upset against Dubois

Jul 11, 2019

Nick Parkinson

Close•Reports on boxing for ESPN.co.uk, as well as several national newspapers
•Has been reporting on British boxing for over 15 years
•Appears on BoxNation’s Boxing Matters show

Nathan Gorman says he’d love to emulate the success of Andy Ruiz Jr. when he faces Daniel Dubois at the O2 Arena in London (Saturday, ESPN+ 3 p.m. ET).

Ruiz pulled off the upset when he stopped Gorman’s fellow Englishman Anthony Joshua in the seventh round to win the WBA, IBF and WBO world heavyweight titles on June 1. Joshua had stopped all but one of his opponents and was heavily fancied to overwhelm Ruiz with his power.

Gorman believes his hand speed will be too much in a clash against big-punching Dubois (11-0, 10 KOs), 21, who has defeated all but one of his professional opponents by knockout.

It’s a battle between two unbeaten English heavyweight prospects. Gorman (16-0, 11 KOs), 23, from Nantwich in Cheshire, whose physique is less defined than his co-challenger’s, is not reading too much into the comparisons between the two fights, but is taking inspiration from Ruiz.

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Friday, 7 a.m. ET on ESPN+: Robert Brant vs. Ryota Murata, rematch, 12 rounds, for Brant’s WBA “regular” middleweight title.

Friday, 3 p.m. ET on ESPN+: Jazza Dickens vs. Nathaniel May in a 10-round featherweight bout.

Saturday, 2:45 p.m. ET on ESPN+: Daniel Dubois vs. Nathan Gorman, 12 rounds, for vacant British heavyweight title and Joe Joyce vs. Bryant Jennings, 12 rounds, heavyweights.

“Hand speed is definitely an area Dubois struggles with, it’s because he’s not the quickest in the boxing ring, he’s got a very European, stand-up and rigid style with everything off the jab,” Gorman told ESPN.

“Too much is made about body definition. If it’s a bodybuilding competition, Dubois would win [the] gold medal, but it isn’t and as long as you can fight it doesn’t matter what you look like, and Andy Ruiz showed the world that.”

Many have compared the Gorman-Dubois fight to Joshua against Ruiz, but not Gorman.

“Me and Ruiz are completely different fighters with different mindsets,” Gorman said. “Obviously, stylistically Ruiz has fast hands and I have fast hands; AJ has power and Dubois has power. It does show you that upsets can happen with hand speed.

“I don’t think it was a case of Joshua being exposed. But what happened is Andy Ruiz’s style is all wrong for Anthony Joshua. I’ve always been a big fan of Andy Ruiz and we have exchanged a few words on social media and he’s backing me, which is nice to see. I said to him it was a great achievement.”

Gorman and Dubois know each other from their amateur days together on the Great Britain team. The pair clashed back then and Gorman has drawn confidence from getting to know Dubois’ personality.

“I’m confident because we know each other and I’ve got a lot of self-belief,” Gorman told ESPN. “If you don’t have any self-belief I don’t think you are in the right sport. If you are doubting yourself before you walk to the ring, you are in trouble. We know each other from the GB team, we shared a room together for a couple nights but we didn’t get along and we got switched. We just clashed.”

Gorman is based at a gym in Hyde, near Manchester, where he works with trainer Ricky Hatton, the former junior welterweight and welterweight world titleholder.

“It’s fun with Ricky but when I’m in the gym with him, it’s serious,” Gorman said. “… When there’s work to be done it has to be done.”

Gorman can also count on the support of second cousin Tyson Fury, the current lineal heavyweight champion.

“I never saw much of [Fury] growing up but I knew him and I knew he was training at Ricky Hatton’s gym,” Gorman said. “We got to know each other a bit better there and the things he does at training showed me why in my eyes he’s the best heavyweight on the planet.”

Read this article from its source at http://www.espn.com/boxing/story/_/id/27155114/underdog-gorman-looking-ruiz-style-upset-dubois