Max is "Mad" as hell
Story & photos by Chris Cozzone
Fighting a guy like “Mad” Mike Alderete, says “Mad” Max Heyman, equates to taking a tune-up.
At least, that was until the mad-dogging and smack talk elevated – or lowered – the bout into one of the nastiest grudge matches Albuquerque has seen in years.
“This was, basically, just one more fight back for me on my way to bigger, better fights,” says Heyman. “But it’s obviously turned into something personal.”
On Friday, Heyman (23-10-4, 13 KOs), one fight into a comeback following a three-year retirement, will take on crosstown cruiser rival Alderete (6-4-2, 3 KOs) in the local main event of "Crossroads," a cross-promotion card by Romero Productions and Golden Boy.
In the main and co-main of the ESPN2-televised portion of the show, Cuban light-heavyweight Yordanis Despaigne (5-0, 4 KOs) who, with just five pro bouts, takes on 36-fight veteran Richard Hall (29-7, 27 KOs) in a ten-rounder. In the co-main, Maryland heavyweight Seth “Mayhem” Mitchell (16-0-1, 10 KOs) will go eight with Louisiana’s Johnnie White (22-1, 18 KOs).
“It’s great that Golden Boy has teamed up with Danny Romero to promote this fight – and I don’t think it takes away from my fight,” says Heyman. “My fight is, really, just a step back into contention.
“I really don’t think it’s going to last too long. This is a fight that can end quickly. It comes down to how much he can take. He’s going to get hit and I don’t think he’ll be able to take it.”
The possibility of a Heyman-Alderete match-up materialized last summer, when Heyman was talking about returning to the sport he put aside to launch a career in firefighting, three years ago.
“I have to thank Mike,” says Heyman. “If he hadn’t talked so much smack last summer, I wouldn’t have been so motivated to come back.
“This little S.O.B. talked so much crap. I’ve been around him in the last three years and not once has he ever said anything about fighting me – and that I’ve been ‘avoiding’ him for years? That’s where my animosity comes in. He’s never had the balls to say anything to my face.”
When the offer came, Heyman jumped at the chance, both, for a tune-up and for the opportunity to silence Alderete.
“I expect a little trash talk in a fight, but where has Mike earned the right?” says Heyman. “He’s fought nothing but bums. He’s beaten bums and he’s lost to bums. His best win is over Dewey Cooper – a guy I beat up in sparring so bad, he left after one round; a guy my grandmother could beat, and she’s been dead for four years.
“This punk is talking so much trash, I’m just saying, ‘Shut the f--- up and prove it in the ring.’”
While Alderete may have fought more often at the weight they will be at Friday night – 195 – Heyman feels he has every other advantage.
“I’ve fought better opposition, I have more experience and my boxing skills are superior to him,” he says.
Heyman also feels he has the psychological advantage:
“He was trying to mad dog me at the press conference but when I looked in his eyes, I saw fear and uncertainty. And doubt.
“Whatever he shows me, I’ve seen before. I’m not really concerned about what he brings. In fact, I’m not really focused on fighting Alderete’s style. Studying his style is not really necessary. I’m not worried about his hook or his jab. He can’t outbox me and he doesn’t hit hard.
“The only way he can beat me? If it’s I twist my ankle on the way to the ring.”
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