James Moore (16-2) will make his ring return this Friday night when he fights Joseph De Los Santos (4-3-3) in a six round contest on a Ring Promotions card at Plattduetsche Park Restaurant, Franklin Square, Long Island.
It will be the Wicklow native’s first fight since his defeat to Yuri Foreman on December 13, and the 31-year-old is looking forward to getting back in the ring.
“I’m looking forward to a solid night’s work and a good performance,” Moore told IrishCentral this week.
Moore took a break a two-month break after his last fight, a disappointing loss to the New York-based Foreman for the NABF title, to get away and to get the loss out of his system.
Though coming off nearly the longest layoff he has had as a pro, Moore says he has rediscovered his hunger for the game and is looking forward to the fight this weekend.
Moore and trainer Lennox Blackmore have prepared for this fight in the Island Fitness gym in Glen Cove, Long Island. If there are two words to describe the difference between this camp and the last, they are better sparring.
“I’ve had a lot better sparring for this fight than for the last one. On the West Coast (where Moore did much of his prep work for the Foreman fight) a lot of the guys I was sparring had fights fall through so they left and it was hard to get sparring,” he said.
This time out getting good quality workouts has not been an issue. Moore had many spars with New York middleweight George Walton (20-3, 12 KOs) a strong puncher who left the city this week to go to Puerto Rico for Miguel Cotto’s camp to help him prepare for his June fight against Joshua Clottey.
Moore revealed to the Irish Voice that he had been offered the Kassim Ouma fight on the recent John Duddy-headlined card in Newark, but he had turned it down because he would only have had three weeks to prepare for the former world champion and he had already committed to the bout in Long Island.
Moore is wary of his Dominican opponent Friday night. Santos’ record is 4-3-3, but some of his draws have been against fighters with decent records.
“This guy is better than his record suggests, and with the shorter fight there is no room for mistakes. There is no room for a slip up as the fight is a six-rounder,” he said.
Moore put it succinctly when asked what he was needed to do in this fight. “Land more power combinations,” he replied.
Moore, who came to the end of his contract with Celtic Gloves promotions after the Foreman fight, has Barney Moore as his advisor and is keeping all options open.
Though this fight is at a catchweight of 157 pounds, Moore isn’t entirely sure whether to campaign at 154 or 160 going forward. One fight that is still a very real possibility is a matchup with Pawel Wolak, the Polish-American light middleweight who is based in New Jersey and fights out of New York.
The two have been linked to each other in the past, and the fight would be an interesting one for the Irish and Polish communities in New York.