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  • Shannon Briggs: Wladimir Klitschko's long-awaited nemesis? (Video)

Shannon Briggs: Wladimir Klitschko's long-awaited nemesis? (Video)

Joseph Herron Updated
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Former Heavyweight Champion Shannon Briggs might want to think about changing his ring moniker from “The Cannon” to “The Shadow”.

Throughout the greater part of 2014, the Brooklyn, New York, native has been seen stalking universally recognized Heavyweight Champion Wladimir Klitschko in the gym, at restaurants, and various media events…even going as far as tracking him down by way of motorboat.

The persistent puncher has been unrelenting in his pursuit, to say the least, ultimately driving people to question the soon-to-be 43 year old fighter’s sanity.

The latest episode occurred this past Wednesday, November 12, during a public workout featuring Klitschko and mandatory title challenger Kubrat Pulev, when “The Cannon” once again showed up unannounced at the massive media event. Despite his efforts in hoping to once again rattle Wladimir’s proverbial cage, Team Klitschko successfully anticipated Shannon’s arrival and consequently locked the former titlist outside of the packed Volkswagen Hall in Hamburg, Germany.

While many pundits and observers have questioned the sincerity of the hard punching fighter’s conveniently recorded interludes with Klitschko, the reigning Heavyweight Champion’s head trainer, Johnathon Banks, believes Briggs’ carefully orchestrated maneuvers to be that of genius.

“I don’t think anyone should be surprised about any of these confrontations,” states the astute, young fight trainer.

“This is what Shannon Briggs does. In my opinion, it’s actually quite brilliant and I take my hat off to him. His thought process is almost genius because he’s getting the attention of the entire boxing community without having to compete against any of the top fighters in the division.”

“Think about it…if he weren’t doing these ridiculous things to Wladimir, would we even be talking about him?”

The Detroit based trainer/contender has a solid point.

At age 43, does Shannon Briggs have the time to work his way up the Heavyweight pecking order like most other contenders?

He certainly doesn’t have the massive fan base, or the affiliation and support of an influential promotional company that is usually required to conveniently skip over the extremely long waiting list of would be Heavyweight challengers.

Although Shannon is a former lineal champion and has shared the ring with former champions George Foreman and Lennox Lewis, the Florida based enigma has been professionally dormant since getting blown out by Wladimir’s brother, Vitali Klitschko, in October of 2010.

Until Shannon started strategically stalking the 38 year old current champion, most boxing scribes and fight fans assumed Briggs had officially retired from the sport.

To Mr. Banks, this was Shannon’s only logical option at this stage in his professional career.

“Like it or not, controversy sells in the fight game,” states the knowledgeable Kronk Gym fighter. “Whether or not anyone takes Shannon seriously is completely irrelevant because people have once again started talking about him in the Heavyweight division. People are saying, ‘what’s wrong with this guy’ or ‘this guy’s crazy’…but they’re still talking about him.”

“Shannon is hoping that everyone will eventually say, ‘why don’t you just give this guy a shot so you can hurry up and knock this guy out’. That’s what Shannon wants. He looks to be in great shape and seems to be taking care of himself. So who knows?”

“So I say to Shannon Briggs…dude, you’re doing one hell of a job. Keep up the good work!”

If the 42 year old evil genius from Brownsville is truly a thorn in the side of Wladimir Klitschko, then why is his head trainer applauding Shannon’s efforts?

When one looks at the current landscape of the Heavyweight division, few match-ups truly jump out at the always critical fight community.

Potential pairings with contenders like Deontay Wilder, current WBC titlist Bermane Stiverne, and Tyson Fury are most intriguing…but outside of the aforementioned trio, very few match-ups sizzle for the long reigning and dominant champion.

Could Shannon Briggs become that elusive B-side for Wladimir Klitschko…one that finally creates an exciting rivalry within this top heavy version of boxing’s former glamour division?

Is this why Johnathon Banks seems to somewhat condone the “Briggs Madness”?
In the theater of the unexpected that is boxing, anything can and often does happen.


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