MINNEAPOLIS – Stephen Fulton’s frustration festered Thursday as he sat on a stage and discussed his fight with Daniel Roman.
Eventually, an animated Fulton directed his ire toward Daniel Roman’s team, which was seated in the first row at their press conference in a hotel ballroom. Fulton reminded them that he is the undefeated, defending champion entering their 12-round, 122-pound title fight, which will headline Showtime’s live doubleheader Saturday night from The Armory.
“This is his last chance,” Fulton said. “This is his last shot. But the thing with me is y’all seen how I fight in the inside, I can fight on the outside. I can fight any way I want. But [depending] on how I wake up feeling Saturday morning gonna determine that fight. I can do whatever I want. I’m versatile. I can do whatever I want. I don’t have one style to me, and he know that. His whole camp know that.”
Fulton’s versatility and determination enabled him to beat Brandon Figueroa by majority decision in their 12-round title unification fight November 27 at Park MGM’s Dolby Live in Las Vegas. Fulton (20-0, 8 KOs) won their “Showtime Championship Boxing” main event on two scorecards (116-112, 116-112, 114-114).
Some of Fulton’s frustration stems from fans and media who’ve questioned whether he deserved a victory over the previously undefeated Figueroa (22-1-1, 17 KOs). The Philadelphia native also has been bothered by criticism from Roman’s team regarding his social media posts.
“I feel like they pay attention too much to the social media,” Fulton said. “I post because I have to promote myself leading up into this. We fightin’ the same day as Kambosos, Haney fightin’. You hear what I’m saying? And they have a bigger platform [ESPN], bigger weight class [135 pounds] and more attention is on them. I have to do my job as an individual to promote myself as a black man, first and foremost. So, that’s where the posting comes from, to promote.
“But don’t get it f***ed up, bro. I’m here to win. I’ve always been here to win – always. And that’s what’s gonna happen Saturday. It ain’t gonna be no different. He lost three times. You can’t take away his accomplishments. He’s lost three times, maybe one draw. It’s four ways to get to him. There’s no way to get to me yet. Nobody has figured that out.”
Caesars Sportsbook lists Fulton, who owns the WBC and WBO belts, as more than a 5-1 favorite to defeat Roman.
Los Angeles’ Roman (29-3-1, 10 KOs) has lost only a debatable split decision to unbeaten IBF/WBA champ Murodjon Akhmadaliev over the past 8½ years. Uzbekistan’s Akhmadaliev (10-0, 7 KOs) won his two titles from Roman in January 2020 in Miami.
Before Fulton and Roman square off, Cuba’s David Morrell Jr. (6-0, 5 KOs) will defend the WBA’s secondary super middleweight title against Kalvin Henderson (15-1-1, 11 KOs), of Fayetteville, Arkansas, in a 12-rounder. Showtime’s telecast will begin at 9 p.m. ET, with a replay of Gervonta Davis’ sixth-round stoppage of Rolando Romero in their lightweight title fight last Saturday night at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.