• Super-middleweight

DeGale hungry to leave a legacy

ESPN staff
March 14, 2013
James DeGale is targeting more world titles © PA Photos

WBC Silver super-middleweight champion James DeGale believes he has matured as a fighter since his defeat to George Groves, and is targeting more world titles in his plans to leave a legacy in the world of boxing.

DeGale defends his title against Colombian Alexander Brand (19-1) on March 23, and whilst the Olympic gold medallist is planning for a successful future, he is adamant he will take one fight at a time.

Speaking to Sportsvibe, DeGale said: "I want to go all the way, I want to win that world title, go up in weights and get more world titles but as I say I'm taking one fight at a time now and eventually, please believe me, I will win a world title.

"[Brand] is dangerous. I'm on the verge of a world title now so if I carry on progressing and carry on winning and carry on looking good, by the end of the year I'm going to be boxing for a world title.

"So this is a big fight and I've got to go in there and look good against a good opponent, a world-class opponent and put on a good show and carry on progressing.

"I'm not happy with just a win, I want to look good and as I say you've got to put in these good performances so people talk. So expect an explosive, wicked performance from myself."

DeGale, who was originally set to fight Pablo Oscar Natalio Farias before complications arose, admitted that his majority points defeat to George Groves may have been a blessing in disguise and that he has matured as a result.

"Maybe if I didn't lose against Groves I wouldn't have gone on to win my European title. That was a pretty hard fight and I had to dig deep in the last couple of rounds," DeGale said.

"Maybe if I'd won against Groves I would have kicked back and went with the flow, but I had to dig in. I went on to win the European title, so as I say things happen for a reason and I learned a lot from the fight."

"I'm 27 now and it feels like I'm growing up. As my dad says, every seven years your mind changes in the way you think and your body changes in the way you think and you mature. I feel like I'm maturing and I'm just thinking differently."

'Chunky', who vacated his European super-middleweight title last December in order to focus on winning a world title, believes 2013 will be a big year and is targeting a rise to the top as well as a possible rise in weights.

When asked about moving up in weight, DeGale said: "Eventually, when I retire I want to leave some sort of legacy so to move up in weight and win other world titles would just be perfect.

"I'm here for a good old while, looking to win more titles and be in massive fights so as I say people keep on supporting and I will not let you down.

"Now is my time and as I say 2013 is a big year for me. It's been four and a half years since I won an Olympic gold medal and I've been a professional, so I think 2013 is my time and my year to do big things. So prepare yourself, it's going to be a big year."

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