Michael Conlan did get mad and still plans to get even.
The Irish star fights Jordan Gill in a must-win super featherweight clash at the SSE Arena this weekend and goes into the clash with his opponent’s reaction to his dramatic knockout defeat to Leigh Wood fresh in his mind.
The Olympic medal winner hasn’t forgotten how ‘The Thrill’ celebrated with Wood in Nottingham in the spring of last year, jumping for joy as he worryingly fell from the ring after being knocked out in the last round of the world title fight.
Indeed, he seems to be using it as fuel going into the Conlan Boxing and Matchroom promoted clash and is planning his own form of revenge in his hometown this weekend.
The 32-year-old two-time world title challenger says both the knockout and celebratory roles will be reversed this time around.
“Leigh’s friend, a guy who celebrated when I got knocked out of the ring. A guy who was jumping up and down and fanboying, putting pictures up of the knockout,” Conlan commented ominously.
“Now it’s time for you to get knocked out.”
Conlan’s former and potentially future rival, Wood will most be likely be present ringside in Belfast on Saturday, and again the switch-hitting natural talent assures he won’t be celebrating this time around.
“I’m sure he’ll be there. It makes no difference he can’t get the ring and I’m going to knock his friend out.”
Taking on a former European Champion in your first fight since being stopped by Luis Alberto Lopez is a risky move, albeit a typically defiant Conlan play.
The former Irish amateur standout, who works with Cuban master Pedro Diaz for the first time this weekend, is aware it’s a challenge but remains adamant ‘The Thrill’ will be gone before the final bell.
“I think it’s going to be a great fight while it lasts. I do think I’ll knock Jordan out.”