Some within Irish boxing have questioned why ‘The Negotiator’ has elected to take on Eddie Hearn prospects rather than try and accumulate experience or even titles back home.
Indeed some have even gone as far as to indicate the money is the motivation behind the fighter who has been pro just over a year’s decision to trade leather against such highly thought of prospects.
However, when speaking to Byrne you realise he has a unique approach to an early career. The Loughlinstown former Bray Wanderers footballer sees it as a chance to change his career and leap frog all those at the same career stage and are content to build at home.
Byrne is always confident of an upset win and knows doing so in the Sky spotlight could be a career changer.
“The pay packet is not what people think it is? Do people really think I would put ten weeks of pure pain into my body to be a journeyman? That’s not me,” he said, putting Irish-boxing.com in its place.
Byrne has been linked with a host of fighters closer to home over the last 12 months – and has been involved in some frank back and forths with a number of teams and even promoters.
He claims he is open to all comers and being in domestic dust ups of note appeals to him, but remains adamant that those fights won’t happen for ‘peanuts’ and in the mean time a chance to beat a name under the spotlight is better than the certainty of beating a journeyman on a less lit-up show.
“I’ll be honest, I will come back and fight anyone in Ireland if it makes sense and I ain’t been used for peanuts. Money aside I would rather fight in massive arenas against huge names than fight in small arenas against journeymen and that’s the bottom line.”
“If anyone wants to fight me for any titles in Ireland them get in contact with a decent offer that makes sense to both parties and I’ll be there no problems.”
The latest ‘name’ Byrne has been drafted in to fight over six rounds is Anthony Fowler [2(2)-0]. The Liverpudlian is a former stand out amateur and Rio Olympian who promoter Eddie Hearn has high hopes for – but Byrne is confident he can cause an upset.
The fighter that lost on points to Felix Cash and Josh Kelly claims his latest Matchroom foe isn’t at the same level as the previous two who defeated him and predicts he will break his foe down in a close fight.
“I predict an early onslaught from Fowler and, once I overcome that, I think I’ll break him down and work too much for him. I think it’s going to be very, very close and that’s me being completely honest,” he continued.
“The first fight I had [v Cash] I had just fought three weeks earlier at welter and that was at middleweight but it was a gamble that paid in terms of activity on the big stage regularly.”
“On Fowler I see a big strong lad that likes to throw bombs, but I don’t see him been as technical or as hard to hit as Kelly.”
Byrne also revealed he has trained camps and will now have MTK stylist Declan Geraghty’s father in his corner, Declan Geraghty Senior.
“I changed coach for this camp to change things up and work out of my gym in Bray so I could focus more time on my boxing with less travel.”
“What Eddie [Hyland] taught me was priceless to the earlier part of my career and I’ll hold him close to my heart for ever, but I’ve moved to Declan Geraghty Sr and I have changed everything about my style and I hope everyone notices that Saturday night.”
Photo Credit: Laszlo Geczo Photography