BOXING: ‘Fireworks’ expected in Ghost’s fight

Oscar De La Hoya expects to see a lot of fireworks when Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero and Andre Berto square off Nov. 24 for Guerrero’s WBC Interim Welterweight World Championship.

“Putting this fight together was a no-brainer,” he said during a teleconference Thursday. “This fight really has fireworks written all over it.”

De La Hoya commended both fighters for their charity work – Guerrero with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Berto with Haiti relief aid after the earthquake.

“He is obviously one of the best fighters in expert circles today,” De La Hoya said of Guerrero. “He is rapidly climbing that ladder. Here is a young man who wants to fight the best in order to become the best. He is willing to take on all comers.”

Guerrero said he is looking forward to facing Berto.

“I am excited for this fight,” Guerrero said. “I can’t wait to get out there. Got a week left. Man, just chomping at the bit. All the hard work is done. Now all that is left is to go in there and fight.”

Guerrero has been no stranger to wanting to fight the best fighters. He was asked if he felt “feistier” before this big fight.

“I’m always feeling like that,” Guerrero said. “The thing is a lot of people are kind of befuddled because now I am speaking up. Before I just did my job and sat back and waited for it to come my way. Unfortunately, if you don’t open your mouth in the business and talk nothing gets done. I’m’ not the type of guy who does that but sometimes you got to step out of your own comfort zone and make it happen.”

Berto said he actually saw Guerrero’s last fight against Selcuk Aydin in person, not knowing Guerrero would be his next opponent. He described Aydin as a punching bag. Guerrero countered that Aydin was more like a “punching wall.”

“Aydin did come and take some punches but he wasn’t a punching bag,” Guerrero said. “He was strong and determined. Andre Berto is a different fighter. Styles make fights and I’m happy with my style. I can bring different styles and I can make adjustments during a fight.”

Guerrero was initially hesitant to face Berto because of allegations of cheating.

“Everybody is guilty until they are proven innocent, and he was proven innocent,” Guerrero said. “I have been in situations where I have been in the ring with people on steroids. We take real caution against that because every time we step in that ring, we are putting our life on the line. When somebody enhances they are playing with your life.”

Berto said his speed is his advantage.

“My speed, definitely, my power, and explosiveness,” Berto said. “Robert is a tough, crafty southpaw, so we’ve been working with some tremendous sparring partners to be prepared for him.”

Tickets are still available for fans who want to make the six-hour trip down to the Citizens Business Arena in Ontario, De La Hoya confirmed.

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