Their professional relationship has come to an end, but the family bonds remain strong between Paschal Collins and Steve Collins Jr [10(4)-1(0)-1] according to the Dublin trainer himself.
The light heavyweight fighter left his uncle’s Celtic Warriors Gym in Corduff in the aftermath of his Irish title loss to Paddy McDonagh in June, and has linked up with Steven O’Rourke at the St Michael’s gym across the city in Inchicore.
Trainer Collins however stresses that there has been no tabloid headline ‘split’ or ‘bad blood,’ and more so believes that his nephew just needs a change.
The Cabra coach told Irish-Boxing.com that “we didn’t fall out, there isn’t bad blood, Jesus no.”
“After his last loss – he’s very determined, he wants to get to the top – and he probably feels that he needs a change.”
“We all talk, we’re all still friends. It’s not a big deal where Stevie left here and we all fell out, it’s not like that at all.”
“He wants to try something different after losing his last fight to McDonagh. He wants a shake-up.”
“He’s like his dad [two-weight world champ Steve Collins]. If you look at his dad, he went through a couple of trainers. He’s determined.”
Indeed mixing family with fighting may have been part of the issue, says Collins.
The trainer of Spike O’Sullivan, Luke Keeler, Niall Kennedy, Bernard Roe, Craig O’Brien, and Allan Phelan admits that he my have been toughest on his nephew due to their family bond.
Collins described how “I’m probably a little bit… not emotional, but a little bit too tough on him, because he’s my nephew.”
“He’s the one person in the whole gym that ‘I’ want to succeed, because he’s my nephew.”
“We’re close. Sometimes it’s just a little too close.”
“Even though I’m his uncle, I was always very close to him growing up. I used to mind him when he was a little child.”
“He’s still my nephew, we still talk, we’re still friends. We’re very close, Stevie’s still my nephew and I still love him.”
“He’ll still call me for advice and I’ll still give him advice”
Collins remains adamant that ‘The Wolfhound’ can make a big impact in boxing, but believes his future may be away from Ireland. He outlined how Collins Jr “has got such a bright future.”
“To be honest with you, I could probably see Stevie in the next twelve months either going to England or America, because I think he needs to live in ‘that’ world, where there’s sparring going on every day.”
“He’s determined, that’s one thing about, I saw it in him with rugby when he went to live with Wasps as a kid with Shaun Edwards.”
“He’s sacrificed a lot, an awful lot, and he’d do the same for boxing too”