DeLuca on Brook Fight: ‘This Is My Time’
For any fighter, the chance to main event a card is pretty special to them. When it comes to Mark DeLuca, it is much more special than that.
The Massachusetts-born southpaw faces off against Kell Brook on Saturday, February 8 inside the FlyDSA Arena in Sheffield. The fight will be fight the vacant WBO Inter-Continental Super-Welterweight Title. A former IBF Welterweight Champion, Brook (38-2) has fought some of the best boxing has to offer. He has beaten the likes of Shawn Porter, Frankie Gavin and Vyacheslav Senchenko, while his only losses are against Errol Spence Jr. and Gennady Golovkin. DeLuca (24-1) sees this as the perfect opportunity to shine.
“This is the pinnacle of my career at this point, fighting a former World Champion,” said DeLuca via a press release. “Kell Brook fought two of boxing’s biggest boogeymen at the time in Errol Spence and Gennadiy Golovkin, he shook up their world. I have admiration and respect for Kell as a champion but in order for me to get to where he has been, I have to beat him in Sheffield.”
Since losing to Spence back in 2017, Brook rebounded with a knockout win over Sergey Rabchenko and a win over Michael Zerafa via unanimous decision. Both were in 2018 and he hasn’t fought since. DeLuca was brutally honest when it came to what he believes is on the mind of Brook.
“I can’t speak for him, but I know he is at the crossroads in his career,” DeLuca went on to say. “I know he wants to get back to where he once was and in order to do that he needs to beat me. I don’t think that he has taken this fight lightly as it’s a make or break fight for both of us.”
DeLuca was 20-0 until losing to Walter Wright via split decision in 2018. He avenged the loss, beating Wright via unanimous decision four months later. Since then, he won two fights via unanimous decision against Jimmy Williams and Brandon Brewer. His opportunity to make it up the ranks of the welterweight division starts with Brook.
“This is my chance and this is my time,” DeLuca stated. “I feel great. I have been grinding on small cards in small venues to get to this point and I can showcase my skills and what I am all about in this fight. I am deceiving and people will look at me as a puncher but I can do cute things in there. Everything can change at any moment in a fight.”
While a title is up for grabs, it is not entirely what DeLuca is excited to receive with a win. All of his hard work and dedication has brought him to fighting against a veteran champion on the main stage. He believes he is ready.
“This would be like winning a World Title for me,” said DeLuca. “Although the belt isn’t on the line the man that I am fighting means everything. Fighting someone of his calibre means everything to me. I am confident in my preparation and that is what it all comes down to, fighting the best that I can, that’s all I can do.”