Even though he puts all his fights on the same pedestal, Quebec's Steven Butler is aware that he will have an extra weight on his shoulders when he headlines the Eye gala of the Tiger (EOTTM) scheduled for Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day.
Butler (29-3-1, 25 KOs) will be looking to not only claim the North American Boxing Federation (NABF) middleweight belt, but also defend his home province's honor against tough New Brunswick boxer Brandon Brewer (25-2-1, 11 KOs).
“It gave me motivation during my training camp, explained Butler during a media practice on Monday. The Fête du Québec, against another Canadian? We will represent Quebec as it should, I promise you.”
The one who is nicknamed “Bang Bang” opened a new chapter in his career when he got the better of Hector Manuel Zepeda last March. He had lost his previous two fights, which had compromised his chances of aspiring to his ultimate goal.
“Every fight for me is a world title fight, because [it's part of] path that will bring me there, he estimated. An NABF belt would put me in the top 15 in the world, minimum. I make sacrifices as if we were in the world championship in every fight.”
As for him, Brewer said he was happy to fight for the first time in “the Mecca of Canadian boxing”. Bursting with confidence, he recalled that the overwhelming majority of his rival's fights – wins and losses – had been settled by knockout.
“Either Steve sends his opponents to the floor, or he is the one who finds himself there. I don't think I will be a good opponent for him. It's a bit one-dimensional.”
A matter of maturity
Unsurprisingly, Butler's coach, Rénald Boisvert, does not share this impression. He sees his protege as an athlete in a class apart from the Fredericton native.
“[Brewer] is not a super good boxer, but he is a hard worker. He's someone you should never take lightly, because [these type of boxers] bounce back and have many lives in a fight.”
On the other hand, Butler will have to stay in control of your emotions and “count your energy so that it lasts for 10 rounds”, detailed Boisvert.
“It's a question of maturity. I think he has it now. He's probably the most emotional boxer I know. It's always a trap for a slugger, emotion.”
“I accept myself as I am, Rénald too, concluded the main interested party. “Bang Bang”: the mentality does not change. We know that if we have the opportunity to stop the fight in the first round, we will seize it.”
The EOTTM gala will be presented on TVA Sports , Thursday.