The passing of his trainer Emanuel Steward has hit Wladimir Klitschko hard as he prepares to defend his four world title belts once again this Saturday night in Germany. The Ukrainian is hoping to capture the spirit of his long-term coach to push him to another victory against dangerous opponent Mariusz Wach.
Klitschko, who went from knockout fodder in the heavyweight division to undisputed ring great under Steward, is now planning on saving his mentor’s former gym, the world famous ‘Kronk’ in Detroit after hearing recently that the gym is struggling without Steward’s leadership.
“Kronk Gym has existed for a long time and it will continue to exist. It has taken care of a lot of young people and keeping them away from drugs and crime or anything else. Whoever will run it after Emanuel — that is something we will think about after the Nov. 10 fight,” said Klitschko.
“Of course, I am dedicated and I will make sure all of the fighters that have worked with Emanuel are on the same page as me.
“Emanuel was a very special man to me. Emanuel was a genius in the ring, and it is something that makes me feel privileged to have worked with him for many years and be a friend with such a legend and a genius that we have in boxing.
“We talked a lot. We actually talked more than we did pad work. We talked about boxing and we talked about life, because life is like boxing. There are certain things that are comparable and one of them is life and the sport of boxing.”
The 36 year-old also plans on attending the memorial service for Steward just three days after his November 10 fight with Wach and told the conference call that his brother Vitali will also join the hundreds expected to remember the boxing great next week.