Leroy Childs: Ready to tame Tann!
By "Big Dog" Benny Henderson Jr. (March 22, 2005)  
On April 1st at The Palace Indian Gaming Center in Lemoore California which will be featured on Showtime ShoBox: The New Generation at 11PM ET/PT, two heavyweights will collide. In one corner you have the highly touted 6’6” heavyweight Malcolm Tann, 14-1 (7), while in the other is unknown fighter Leroy Childs, 11-0 (10). But whether you heard the name Leroy Childs or not doesn’t take away the fact he has knocked out all but one of his opposition, six in the opening round, two in two, and two in three, only going the distance once.

Childs, known as ‘Big Daddy’, turned pro in 2002 after three-and-a-half years competing in IKF (International Kickboxing Federation) where he compiled a 6-2 overall record, but the money wasn’t coming in so he laced up the gloves and set out to embark on the heavyweight journey. In his debut he faced the hometown heavyweight Byron Polley (7-2) and made quick work of his time, stopping Polley in round two. Pounding out eight more victories in the course of two years, Childs stepped in and faced his toughest opponent Ralph West, the only guy who hasn’t been stopped by Leroy. June 11th ’04 was Leroy’s night, not only did he fight for the first time a full twelve rounds he earned the IBC Continental heavyweight title in the process.

April 1st will be the first time Childs has stepped out and fought out of his hometown of Missouri and Tann is the toughest test Leroy has ever faced. But it is a test the 6’1” twenty-seven year old hard-hitter is ready to accept. Little is known of Leroy Childs but come April 1st he will have his opportunity to plead his case before the Showtime crowd and to the boxing world, Childs is self-managed and self-trained so a win over Tann or even a good showing would open the doors for Leroy. Childs stopped by the Doghouse to give his thoughts on his upcoming bout and to let the fans get to know him better, enjoy.

Benny Henderson Jr.: Can you give us your thoughts on your upcoming fight against Malcolm Tann?

Leroy Childs:
I think it should be a good learning experience for me; I have only fought here in Missouri and I think it would be good to get out and see some other fighters especially a heavyweight like Malcolm Tann, just see what I can bring to the table and perhaps go further in my career.

BH: This will be your first bout out of your home state you won’t have the hometown crowd backing you so you will pretty much have to win the crowd over, give us your thoughts on that matter?

The crowd I really don’t pay much attention to right now, because my focus is always on the fight at hand. It really doesn’t matter to me if I was fighting in front of ten people or then thousand people, for real. I have been an athlete all my life so being in front of a crowd or performing in front of a crowd is really no big deal to me. It may play some physiological games with some fighters but myself I am kind of used to performing in front of a crowd so it won’t play for or against me, I am just coming in there to have a professional boxing match with Malcolm Tann.

BH: You have only faced one fighter with the experience that Tann has, that was Ralph West whom you defeated for the IBC Continental Heavyweight title via twelve round decision, clearly two different fighters with different styles, but with Tann’s size and strength does that pose more of a threat, and what will be your fight plan coming into this bout?

Definitely with Malcolm Tann being 6’6” I will definitely have to respect his jab, my fight plan is to try to work my jab and set up punches and combinations to score points or perhaps land a knock out.

BH: Showtime is clearly great exposure, if you make a good showing this could really open the door to bigger fights, so does this venue add pressure to you to perform well, or is it a bit of motivation?

It is definitely motivation; I mean just have Goosen Tutor call my name out of the three or four hundred guys out of the heavyweight ranks I got to look at that as a privilege in it self.

BH: You not only manage yourself but you also train yourself, that has to be rough for yourself I mean come.

It’s rough and I actually took a pay cut to become a boxer but hopefully in the end it will pay off. To me I am just a God given athlete and I know what it takes to perform and work out, make sure I study, make sure I stay healthy and go in there and perform. The managing part I just set back and research and wait for phone calls.

BH: What inspired you to want to lace up the gloves?

Before boxing I was kick boxing, I kick boxed for three and a half years, there was just no money in it, and it wasn’t going anywhere. I tried to play football and lost interest for the love of the game so like I said as a God given athlete I figured I would use my abilities somewhere else and boxing seemed like a pretty good sport.

BH: You have six victories in the first round, been in the second twice and two times in the third round with one going twelve rounds, you have knocked out all but one of your opponents. Do you come into the fight looking for the quick knock out, and how would you describe your style?

Definitely not, I kind of believe in the philosophy of Roy Jones Jr., if you come to the fight looking for the knock out you might as well sacrifice going all twelve rounds.

BH: How would you describe your style?

Hit and not be hit really. (Laughs) I mean to me I watch boxing study and try to understand it and I try not to conform myself to a particular style or method or technique, I have my thing if it works it will if not Malcolm Tann was the better man that night.

BH: Who were some of your boxing heroes growing up?

Ah definitely the greats like Ali, Mike Tyson, Roy Jones Jr., Oscar He La Hoya, Julio Caesar Chavez, Felix Trinidad, I mean there are a lot of guys I look up too.

BH: Is there anything you would like to add to this interview or say in closing?

Besides the fact of getting the privilege to fight on Showtime in front of millions of people and get the exposure the young and upcoming boxers need above all of that I am just thankful to be doing this and have this opportunity to do it.

I would like to thank Leroy Childs for his time and thoughts, it was greatly appreciated.

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