“I’ve been chasing him everywhere via Twitter; he has bit back a little bit but mostly he has been scarce,” the London man laughed down the phone as he drove through the streets of England’s capital city on Thursday night.
“I have been proper prodding him but he hasn’t been responding too much. I feel like right now he wants the publicity of fighting but not the actual fight, that’s the vibe I get. Because he would lose this fight. If he fights me he’s lost; he hasn’t got a hope in hell. But at the same time if I was him I would be thinking ‘This guy sells fights, he is popular, he’s an up and comer, I can ride some of that hype’, you know?”
Why is Lewis-Parry chasing the fight so hard?
“Because I want the big fights, the big names. You have got a short window of opportunity in this sport and I want to make as much of that opportunity as I can. Plus, I think Pat Barry is at the end of his career now, maybe one fight left in him. So if that’s the case, I want that last fight from him,” he says.
In fact, Lewis-Parry thinks he can guarantee that Barry has one fight left in him.
“I would retire him. Facing me would be the last fight of his career, I think he would be done after what I would do to him. I think he is a classic example of a guy who should probably hang it up. His brain can’t take it any more. He isn’t a guy who is getting knocked out and he goes down and he’s a bit wobbly. He’s a guy who is going OUT out, he is asleep, looks like he is dead,” he says.
“It all started with that KO from Cheick Kongo [in the UFC]… and he was Brock Lesnar’s sparring partner for f–k’s sake. There’s no way was he allowed to go 100% on Brock, because Brock was the money machine, but I bet Brock went 100% on him. I bet he was just a punch bag. So I think he has taken a lot of damage.
“It’s unfortunate but that’s what it is. We are all fighters and we are all tough guys, anything can happen in a fight, but I don’t think he has a chance if he fights me. I want to fight him on that [GLORY 23] Las Vegas card in August. Me vs. Pat Barry, Las Vegas, live on Spike TV. Pat Barry’s retirement fight. That will bring the viewers in.”
Lewis-Parry has his eyes on a bigger prize than Barry though. Despite losing out to Xavier Vigney in the final of the GLORY 21 SAN DIEGO Heavyweight Qualification Tournament, Lewis-Parry says he wants to get on “the title-shot fast-track” – and he has a plan.
“For me a win over Pat Barry I think would catapult my name up there, probably ahead of where Vigney is [now ranked], even though Vigney won the tournament. He knows he ain’t #5 in the world! I want Pat Barry and then I want them to give me the rematch with Vigney so I can batter him. In a one-off fight it will be completely different,” he says.
“I don’t know if you noticed this but look at my first ring entrance of the night and look at my second; see any difference? I was trying to hide it with some dancing and stuff on my second walk-out but my foot was jacked. I put an inside low-kick right on Demoreo Dennis’ knee in my first fight and I damn near broke my foot, it was swelling up like a balloon backstage. We had to argue with the doctor to get cleared for the second fight, but putting weight on the foot was murder.
“I take nothing away from Vigney all the same, he was the better man that night, but a rematch in a one-off fight would look very different. That first fight he had that night was a joke. I don’t know what the story is with Maurice Jackson but I reckon he lied his way in. No way he was 31-0 as a kickboxer. He looked like he had never been kicked hard before. He pretty much quit after that one hard low kick from Vigney.”
Assuming everything went according to Lewis-Parry’s plan – a win over Barry and victory in a rematch with Vigney – does he really want, so early in his career, to get a title fight against a champion as dominant as Rico Verhoeven is now looking?
“Of course! I can’t lose, it’s a win-win for me. The amount of hype I would get off that fight, it would turn me into an overnight star. And if I lose then I would go and get more experience. The only guy who could lose is Rico because if I win he has lost to a guy who has only been doing it for a few years. Taking the fight would be a no-brainer for me,” he says.
“In fact I want to push for it just because we can sell it so much. I’d be in his face all the time and talking so much trash, people would either love me or want to see me get smashed. It would be a fight to help grow the sport so f–k it, why not?
“There are plenty more people who deserve a title shot before me, but because of my personality and selling skills I reckon I can jump the queue. I can be the first Brit to fight for a GLORY world title. I could so sell that. I want to try and make that happen.”
GLORY 23 LAS VEGAS takes place at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada on Friday, August 7. So far the only fight which has been announced for the card is a welterweight title showdown between Nieky Holzken and Raymond Daniels.
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