"I been screaming for a Klitschko fight for a long time. I think it is well deserved... That's one of the things that I definitely scream for because I always felt like taller fighters were easier opponents being that that's my last question mark; how would Bryant Jennings do against a taller fighter? And that's what I want. I want those big fighters and all of the fighters that people say may be too big for me," stated undefeated heavyweight contender Bryant Jennings, who talked about his knockout win over Artur Szpilka, his future plans, and much more. Check it out!
PC: Congratulations on your knockout win over Artur Szpilka. How do you feel being able to showcase your talents on a big stage like HBO?
BJ: It was good, man. It was good to actually win and win good. A lot of people got to see me, but you know, a lot of the haters is still hating. They are now degrading Szpilka after I exposed him. Now all of a sudden, he wasn't that good. Before that, it was all of this, "Polish Power" and power, power, power stuff, and he didn't even get a chance to lay a glove on me.
PC: Was he anything that you thought he wasn't? Stronger, not as strong, fast or what?
BJ: Well, everything that I put in perspective when I'm dissecting my opponents is how great I am and how great I trained. I know I train hard, so unless it's overwhelming, which I never experienced an overwhelming opponent as far as power other than Bowie Tupou; this mutha put everything into his punches, but he didn't have no gas tank at all. He had no technique at all. It was an awkward position for me because he was still very powerful. But other than that, I have never really been overwhelmed with skill or power. That's how I judge it. I judge me myself. That's why I train so hard; so that nothing will phase you. If you in shape, nothing really phases you. That's why when you see guys take shots, it's like that guy must be in shape because if not, it would have really affected them. That's why I am in great shape always.
PC: Both Jesse Hart and Amir Mansour are adamant that you are very hardworking. Now that you are reaching the next level of the division, do you change anything as far as your preparation and approach or do you feel everything is on point now?
BJ: Everything pretty much stays the same. I been working out at a world-class level since I started. That's what got me here so fast. I don't take breaks in between fights; maybe a week or two out of the gym. But I just keep working. Whatever gets me there is what I keep doing. So I will maintain everything that I am doing right now. I may step it up a bit in sparring, but I have been killing myself since I started, so I just maintain that and step it up just maybe a little bit.
PC: What was your game plan heading into the Szpilka fight, and mentally, was this another fight or was this an "HBO" fight?
BJ: In my mind, it was just another fight. I didn't let the HBO exposure get to me. As you could see, the crowd was heavily supporting him and I did not let that get to me at all. I don't think nothing that was supposed to distract me ever distracted me. I just think that...if you watch my last 5 or so interviews after my fights, I think the majority of the time, they ask me what I learn and I say, "My composure." I think I executed my composure by keeping things in perspective with the crowd and listening to my corner. I maintained the fight and kept it in my bag. So I think my composure has been what I have been working on and I think I got it down pat and it's starting to be effective.
PC: You hurt him several times, but you never really went crazy and blew your load, so your composure definitely came into play. You did, however, finish him in the 10th and final round. Did you realize he was close to being done and went out thinking you could produce the knockout?
BJ: I tend to...that may be something that I need to work on, me perfecting taking a guy out and looking well in doing it. Because even though I have patience, it's like, okay, there is nothing this guy can do to take me out, so I knew I had a little more longer because he wasn't ready to go just yet. I could have stepped on the gas just a little bit more, but I didn't want to do too much because when you try to do too much, that's when it shows and it takes the perfection away from your fight.
PC: We are about to get Scott/Wilder, Arreola/Stiverne, and several other intriguing fights in the heavyweight division, and now Mansour/Cunningham has just been added. The division is looking up. How do you view it when you look around at some of the fights being made?
BJ: I been screaming for a Klitschko fight for a long time. I think it is well deserved, but those big fights are definitely shaking the game up. They definitely putting some interest into the sport again and it's definitely something that I look forward to and I'm glad that I'm actually in it and involved. It's good for the sport and it's good all the way around. The game is shaken up once again.
PC: A name that I am hearing associated with yours is Mike Perez. Is that a fight that you would be interested in?
BJ: Well, you know, at this point right now, everything is a business move, man. We all up at the top and we just can't keep getting wrapped up and tied up into what people want. We gotta get in position. That's the way that I got here. My movement has been very strategic. I am supposed to be bigger than what I am. If they really gave me what I wanted, I would've been bigger than what I am. But we don't just go and fight whoever they say they want to see fight; everything is a strategic move. If I'm hollering Klitschko and I got my mind set on Klitschko, then why am I worried about a 6-foot fighter? That's one of the things that I definitely scream for because I always felt like taller fighters were easier opponents being that that's my last question mark; how would Bryant Jennings do against a taller fighter? And that's what I want. I want those big fighters and all of the fighters that people say may be too big for me or something like that. No disrespect to Mike Perez, but he just really wasn't on my radar. It makes me even more angry that people will say, "he's ducking and dodging," but to be real with you, first of all, who the fuck is he? The critics get too much of a say-so nowadays. That's the part that gets on my nerves. But I just try to block it out best I could and just keep continuing and moving forward.
PC: Social media has definitely gave everyone a voice and that's not always a good thing.
BJ: Most definitely!
PC: How soon would you like to get back in there? You didn't appear to suffer any damage, but those camps can be grueling.
BJ: How soon would I like to get back in there? ASAP. I would have fought 10 days after my last fight. I didn't have a mark on me. I didn't feel...I didn't even work hard in the fight. I honestly worked smart and that was a good example of working smart and not having to work hard. I didn't really exert myself at all in the fight. I was very under control the whole time and I just work smart and got the job done. He didn't even press the issue a lot. I was good the whole way through.
PC: Great performance. I look forward to seeing what the rest of the year has in store for you. Is there anything else you want to add?
BJ: Shout out to everybody, my fans and supporters. Shout out to my Instagram and Twitter @BYJennings and shout out to everybody who even doubt me and everybody who loves me as well; 2014, the year started off great and best believe it's gonna end well too. You already know.
[ Follow Percy Crawford on Twitter @MrFighthype ]