Boxer Rau’shee Warren Is Ready To Rumble
Boxer Rau’shee Warren hopes the third time will be his Olympic charm as he gets ready for London. The former flyweight champion begins with a chip on his shoulder, as he has not been successful in bringing home any Olympic medals during his previous two appearances. Warren already made history when he became the first boxer to qualify to for the U.S. men’s boxing team for the third time, but that’s not enough for the Ohio native.
“I’m on a journey right now of being an Olympic champion,” Warren told the Chicago Tribune. “You never give up on a dream and right now it’s my dream. I chose to go the third time because I’m better than a lot of people thought I was. I’ve got to show them that hard work pays off.”
Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, Warren, 25, had always been a competitive athlete. He grew up idolizing former Philadelphia 76ers point guard Allen Iverson. “I had the Iverson braids. I wore number 3. I just thought I was him,” Warren stated. Unfortunately, by the time Warren got to high school, he was only about five feet tall and quickly put his NBA dreams to rest.
With basketball out of his mind, Warren could finally place his focus on another sport he had taken part of since he was six years old; boxing. Warren first started working out in the same gym where junior welterweight Champion Aaron Pryor once trained. Due to his small stature, Warren usually found himself facing much larger opponents in the ring. But size certainly didn’t matter when Warren, then eight years old at the time, won his first fight against an opponent who was two years older than him. It was a moment that changed his life forever.
"I knew then that was where I was supposed to be," Warren told the Washington Post. “It's hard to describe what it felt like, really. I just knew I was supposed to be in the gym. I knew I was supposed to box.” Because of this, Warren found himself going to the gym everyday until he was nationally ranked as a teenager.
Boxing didn’t only serve as a sport for Warren, but also a way for him to make a living and stay out of trouble. Most young boxers from Cincinnati have their careers either stalled or shortened due to bad decisions. Ricardo Williams, a teenaged boxer who went on the win the silver medal in Sydney, was sent to prison because of drug charges. Ron Siler, a 2004 Olympian, found himself in trouble due to legal troubles. Misfortunes were never too far away from the Warren family as three of Warren’s older brothers were sent to prison.
Fortnately, Warren never found himself in harm’s way in large part to his mother, who convinced him to keep his boxing dreams alive. Warren made a promise to his mother, and hopes that live up to it this summer. “Because of the struggle me and my mom went through, getting this gold medal is going to complete my trophy case,” Warren said.
Despite having lost both fights in the Olympics, Warren remains motivated and determined. After winning a bronze medal in both the 2005 and 2011 world amateur championship, a gold medal in 2007, according to Yahoo Sports. Warren has every right to feel confident as he enters the Olympics this summer.
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