Legend warns American star's facing Portsmouth bearpit as feud erupts
TONY OAKEY warned Jeff Lacy he's stepping into a Portsmouth bearpit as their grudge rematch boiled over.
And the Leigh Park Warrior vowed he's in peak condition to drag the American star into the trenches and relive the glory days at a raucous Mountbatten Centre tomorrow.
The feud between Lacy and Oakey erupted as they went head to head after the feared former world champion and Olympic medallist arrived in the country.
An explosive meeting between the veteran pair lit the touchpaper for the showdown, which will see the Portsmouth legendÂ box competitively on home soil for the first time in eight years.
That is sure to continue at this evening's 5pm weigh-in at the fight venue, with the public welcome to attend what is certain to be a fiery face-off.
Oakey has no doubt the atmosphere tomorrow night will be the equal of showdowns against the likes of Chris Davies, Neil Linford and Neil Simspon in his career.
And the former WBU, British, Commonwealth and Prizefighter champ isn't bothered by Lacy's intimidation tactics ahead of the showdown.
Oakey said: '˜He's tried scaring me. He doesn't bother me - I'm from Leigh Park!
'˜Some of the things he's said have overstepped the mark. I'll remind him of them when I smash him to bits.
'˜I'm enjoying all the build-up. It's good to go through it all one last time.
'˜I'm here to enjoy boxing in Portsmouth against a two-time world champion.
'˜This is probably the two biggest names Portsmouth will ever see box in their city.
'˜Win, lose or draw it's the last time I'm stepping in the ring.
'˜The tickets have gone brilliantly. I can only see the atmosphere being like it always was.
'˜The one thing about Portsmouth is we've always had brilliant followers. The atmosphere they create is second to none.
'˜The atmosphere they created at the Mountbatten Centre in my career was brilliant - and I think it will be the same on Saturday night.
'˜It's two champions going at it. Anything is possible - but I firmly believe it will be an Oakey win.'
The pair will be squaring off once again after a 2016 meeting in Bristol where Oakey came out on top, after Lacy was forced to quit with a torn bicep.
The Florida man insisted he didn't take that meeting seriously, but has trained incessantly for the return.
Oakey is dubious about that statement but knows the fight has all the hallmarks needed to deliver excitement.
He added: '˜It's a fully prepared Jeff Lacy - just like last time.
'˜He didn't have an ounce of fat on him then and it's the same now.
'˜But I'm fit enough to do 10 rounds at a ridiculous pace.
'˜What a way it's going to be to go out.
'˜The ingredients are there. He's a concussive puncher and I'm a workhorse. It's got the ingredients of a fantastic fight.
'˜I've always liked to put bums on seats, so what a way it will be to go out at a packed Mountbatten Centre.'