A voice from the past: Derrick Gainer

GainerTo me at least, and perhaps all boxing fans of certain age, Derrick Gainer is one of those guys Prince Naseem never got around to knocking out. I’m sure that doesn’t truly define him as a fighter, a cursory check confirms his status as a former WBA champion. But the fact he never faced the Prince, whether it was his fault or Hamed’s is my frame of reference for ‘Smoke’s career thus far. Oh, and I think he once lasted twelve rounds in a title bout without an offensive move. I’m less sure on the latter, as I may be mistaking him for Freddie Norwood. That’s the trouble with multiple belts; so many ‘champions’ fail to register in my consciousness.

Anyway,  whatever the past, Gainer is proclaiming to still have a future after victory over Carlos Navarro.


PRESS RELEASE – 18th July 2007

Former WBA Featherweight Derrick “Smoke” Gainer 41-7-1 {24 KO’s} returned to the ring Saturday with a split decision victory over the tough Carlos Navarro 27-6-1 {22 KO’s}. The fight between two southpaws was featured on the undercard of the Roy Jones -Anthony Hanshaw pay per view. Navarro was the aggressor for much of the fight, but had most of his shots altered by Gainer.   The former WBA champion was able to stun Navarro, while showing he still had his world class hand speed. Gainer was able to land a few vintage combinations to both the body and the head throughout the contest.


Gainer was happy to return victorious and applauded his tough opponent. “Navarro is a very game fighter he came to win and I knew he would be tough. The fight was close due to his aggression; he landed a lot of punches on my arms and one clean punch in the third round. I didn’t throw as many punches as I wanted to. I have been in similar fights where it was close and the decision went the other way but tonight it was my time and I know I deserved to win the fight”.


Gainer also revealed his plans to drop down to the Junior Lightweight division and fight for a world title in the near future. “I plan on becoming a world champion at 130 pounds and I will stay active. I took this fight at 135 pounds, so it was easier on my body to make weight. I’ll fight any of the big names at 130 pounds, look at my resume; I have fought nothing but the best! Let’s make a fight with one of the champions. The boy from South Africa {Mzonke Fana} mentioned my name in an interview and I’ll go to South Africa and take his belt. My manager just spoke with the IBF I am sure they will rank me and this time Fana will have no excuses!”



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