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# Bad Blood
Spike O'Sullivan vows to retire 'classless' Lemieux as trash talk turns personal in Vegas
The Cork man says boxing doesn’t need people like David Lemieux after the Canadian dragged up a domestic abuse charge from 2010.

Declan Taylor reports from Las Vegas

GARY ‘SPIKE’ O’SULLIVAN is out to rid boxing of ‘classless’ David Lemieux after their war of words cranked up another notch in Las Vegas.

The middleweight pair clash on the undercard of Gennady Golovkin’s rematch with Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez and the winner could be in line to face whoever comes out on top in the main event.

Gary O'Sullivan has his hands wrapped ahead of the fight Tom Hogan / INPHO Spike O'Sullivan Tom Hogan / INPHO / INPHO

It has been suggested that O’Sullivan and Lemieux, two fan-friendly noted punchers, could steal the show at the sold-out T-Mobile Arena on Saturday night with anticipation heightened by an ongoing feud between the pair.

But after months of verbal jousting, French-Canadian Lemieux decided to get personal by bringing up the Cork man’s 2010 conviction for assault following a domestic incident outside his home a year prior.

“I heard that he’s been beating on his ex-girlfriend,” the former IBF middleweight world champion said.

But O’Sullivan, who vehemently denied any wrongdoing, has promised to make his opponent pay for bringing up an incident from his distant past.

“It was nine years ago, it wasn’t like it was last week,” said the 34-year-old Mahon man. “It was a personal issue between me and my partner which concerned my children.

“I think we’ve all had disputes with our partners in the past – it was something to do with my children and it was something I didn’t really want to go into.

Maybe someone put him up to it because he doesn’t seem to have too much going on upstairs. I think he’s a bit of a distasteful character to be truthful. He can be an arsehole, anyway.

“But Lemieux’s best chance of winning is to make me angry and draw me into a slugfest. That’s why he’s been speaking a lot. He’s trying to get under my skin and draw me into the fight he wants.

He’s been talking a lot but I’ll let my fists do the talking on Saturday night. When I knock him out he will have nowhere to go except retirement. It will be the end of David Lemieux.

Lemieux OSullivan Boxing Steve Marcus David Lemieux Steve Marcus

O’Sullivan, who has lost just two of his 30 professional fights to date, was also disappointed by the way Lemieux acted during his win over Curtis Stevens last year.

The American was left unconscious by a vicious left hook in the fourth round but Lemieux’s celebrations were not dampened by his opponent’s obvious distress.

“When he did that against Stevens, he was just stood there celebrating,” O’Sullivan said.

“Stevens had just been badly knocked out. It’s more than unsporting behaviour – it’s distasteful.

“Boxing is a gentleman’s sport and you should respect your opponents. Curtis Stevens has got children, a mother, people who care about him.

“Lemieux should’ve showed a bit of respect but instead he showed he was very classless.

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“I don’t think he’s the sharpest knife in the drawer, I don’t think he’s very intelligent and he’s not a very likeable guy.

“This sport doesn’t need people like him and now I am in the position where I can do something about it.”

Spike is on a six-fight winning streak which stretches back to December 2015, when he was beaten by Chris Eubank Jr.

Gary O'Sullivan ahead of the fight Tom Hogan / INPHO Spike O'Sullivan Tom Hogan / INPHO / INPHO

The former butcher almost walked away from the sport entirely following that loss in London but he has worked his way to the brink of a world title shot with five quick wins in his last half-dozen outings.

Big-hitting Lemieux [39-4, 33KOs] has been described as his most dangerous opponent to date, but Spike doesn’t agree.

He said: “I would put him fourth. Genuinely, I’m not going to bullshit.

Billy Joe Saunders is the best middleweight in the world, Eubank would destroy Lemieux and I think Antoine Douglas, who I beat in Montreal last year, would also beat him.

“Lemieux does the same thing over and over in boxing — he’s a one-trick pony. I’ve got a good chin and I’ve never been down in my whole career.

“You’d be stupid to think you can’t be knocked out because anybody can –- even Mike Tyson was knocked out.

“But Lemieux has been down a few times and I don’t think he has the heart that I’ve got, or the desire to win.

“He’s also going to find out just how hard I punch – he’ll regret all the talk.”

THE CANADIAN PRESS 2017-12-16 Ryan Remiorz Spike knocks out Antoine Douglas Ryan Remiorz

Canelo-Golovkin II and Spike-Lemieux will be shown exclusively live on eir Sport in Ireland, and will be free to all subscribers.

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