Legendary ring announcer, Michael Buffer, well-known for his “Let's get ready to rumble” catchphrase, says Russia has recently become a great environment for boxing.
Boxing's evolution in Russia:
“It's a great evolution,” Buffer told in an exclusive interview with RT. “There's a lot of eastern Europeans and Russian, who dominated the Olympics in the last quarter of century. And now the fruits of all the labor, with people training in the gyms evolved into this fantastic moment when you have a huge potential and a lot of World Champions in Russia. The arenas are now first-class, which is great. Because now you have world championship fighters and world championship events televised around the world thousands of people go to see. And they now recognize the fighters. It's a really great environment for boxing.”
‘Let's get ready to rumble!’ – the origin of the trademarked catchphrase:
“The reason it started because there was a period and it still exists the ring-announcer has to introduce all the officials before the fighters,” the 67-year-old explained. “And you have the moment when the fighters come to the ring, with music and lights and it's very exciting. And then the ring-announcer has to speak and it kills the atmosphere, the electricity that was created by the fighters making their entrance to the ring. So I wanted something that would ignite the crowd and bring them back to the point, like, now you're going to meet the stars of the show because they are the stars! So I tried something like ‘Battle stations!’, ‘Fasten your seatbelts’. It didn't work. And the great Mohammad Ali used to say that he was ready to rumble, so I fine-tuned that to what you hear today – ‘Let's get ready to rumble’.”
“You know I never got a chance to introduce Mohammad Ali as a fighter,” he stressed. “Of course, through the years we had some charity events, and I know him, we are friends. He's one of my all-time favorites. A fighter, when I was boy, at the end of his career was the great Sugar Ray Robinson. Probably, the greatest fighter of all-time. I am a big fan of his. And lately – Pacquaio, Mayweather you gotta give credit to the Klitschkos for dominating the heavyweight division. Sasha Povetkin. I did many of his fights, in Germany as he's promoted by Sauerland Promotions, now he's the WBA heavyweight champion and he's a favorite of mine.”
“Sometimes it's emotional, sometimes I'm introducing two fighters that I've known, I know their families, I love them both and they have to fight each other. So you're happy for the winner, and you're broken-hearted for the loser on the same night,” Buffer added.
By posting your comment, you agree to abide by our Posting rules