'The Axeman' getting sharp for title defence
Leighton Levy, Gleaner Writer
Months after he chopped down the challenge of veteran boxer Vic Darchinyan on May 31, Nicholas Walters, known as 'The Axeman', is getting his axe sharpened once again as he prepares for an upcoming defence of his WBA featherweight title in late October.
In May, the 38-year-old Darchinyan, who once held eight titles in three different weight classes, proved no match for the fast-rising 28-year-old Jamaican, who is unbeaten in 24 professional fights and looking for his first million-dollar payday. As he hunts that seven-figure paycheque, Walters recently travelled to LA, where he spent time working with trainer Rudy Hernandez.
The Jamaican revealed that he learned new things and even sparred with lightweight champ, Miguel Vasquez.
"I learned a lot with coach Rudy; little things here and there that can help make a difference," he said. "I now have two excellent trainers in my corner - Rudy Hernandez and Celso Chavez. One thing I really appreciated was all the good sparring, which makes you sharp."
According to the Fightnews Internet site, the talented Jamaican impressed onlookers with his strength and power, but despite the positive outlook, it doesn't mean the Jamaican will be abandoning his training base in Panama. "Nicholas is in LA only for a few weeks," Walters' trainer, Jacques Deschamps, said on the site. "We wanted him to change his routine, sharpen his skills and learn new things. There are so many good boxers in the featherweight division right now, and Nick must be ready for the challenges ahead. Trainer Rudy Hernandez and head trainer Celso Chavez complement each other beautifully. Nicholas is always eager to learn, to get better. Believe me, you will see the results in his next fights."
Hernandez liked what he saw of the Jamaican world champion.
"I was impressed with how hard he hits but without wasting punches," he said. "Nicholas is crafty, not just a KO puncher. His punching is lethal, but in a methodical fashion; he will break you down. We're teaching him a few new tricks and sharpening his skills. I am also impressed by his work ethic, which is the mark of all real champions."
Deschamps meanwhile, said he liked an idea mooted by boxing promoter Bob Arum of a contest between featherweight champions and top contenders, claiming Walters would relish the challenge.
"Think of all the very talented boxers at this weight. WBA super champion Nonito Donaire, unbeaten IBF champ Evgeny Gradovich, WBC champ Jhonny Gonzalez, WBO's Vasily Lomachenko, Abner Mares, etc. It would be great to have all these guys facing each other and, I tell you what, Nicholas is eager to face any challenge."
As he waits for his next opponent to be named, The Axeman expressed to Fightnews his eagerness for his next fight.
"We're waiting for Top Rank and Mr. Arum to let us know. I am happy that there are so many good boxers in the featherweight division. The Axeman is ready, bring them on. I want to beat them all."