Adam Kownacki hopes household ‘sacrifice’ pays off in key struggle

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One thing needed to change. 

Adam Kownacki, after surging out to a 20-0 report as a professional, had seen a profession on the cusp of title photographs skid dramatically wayward. Again-to-back losses to Robert Helenius moved his report to 20-2. Extra importantly, it eliminated Kownacki from the dialog of the elites within the heavyweight division and rivalry to earn championship fights. 

These two bouts weren’t the identical for the 33-year-old Polish native, even past handing him his first setbacks. He entered the ring with the fallacious mindset, and he is aware of it. But it surely was a mindset he had by no means skilled earlier than. 

“You’ve acquired to be very targeted,” Kownacki instructed The Submit. “I acquired to change into a father throughout that point, so it was a brand new expertise for me, however I didn’t handle it accurately, and that was an enormous studying expertise. Additionally, Robert Helenius was a great fighter, he caught me with a pair good photographs, generally you want some luck in your aspect, and I didn’t have it these nights. But it surely’s a studying expertise. I undoubtedly realized methods to handle the time extra, and hopefully preserve my palms up.” 

Adam Kownacki is the co-main occasion on the Danny Garcia-Jose Benavidez card.
Getty Photographs

Kownacki admits new fatherhood duties saved him from dedicating the main target wanted to his coaching and preparation. Late nights shedding sleep, psychological and bodily vitality expended, and the general distraction from a brand new life expertise hindered him within the ring. 

After a nine-month layoff, Kownacki appears to revive his stature towards Ali Eren Demirezen (16-1) because the co-main occasion on the Danny Darcia-Jose Benavidez card (9 p.m., Showtime) at Barclays Middle Saturday night time.

As he approached a make-or-break level in his profession, he knew he couldn’t repeat the identical mistake. He despatched his spouse and household, together with the most recent younger member, again to Poland throughout his camp, permitting himself to solely fixate on his coaching, and making wanted adjustments to his sport.  

No distractions, no excuses. 

Adam Kownacki, left, takes a hook from Robert Helenius during his second loss.
Adam Kownacki, left, takes a hook from Robert Helenius throughout his second loss.
Getty Photographs
Adam Kownack, left, with Ali Eren Demirezen ahead of their bout.
Adam Kownack, left, with Ali Eren Demirezen forward of their bout.
Getty Photographs

“I haven’t seen them in over two months,” Kownacki mentioned. “It’s been robust, however I do know you’ve acquired to make sacrifices to be a world champion. Yeah, dealing them away to Poland, I haven’t seen them in over two months, so I can’t wait to be on one of many first flights out of New York after the struggle (laughs). This entire camp was targeted simply on boxing. I used to be capable of focus extra on simply coaching.” 

At seven years previous, Kownacki, alongside along with his dad and mom and brothers, emigrated from Poland to Greenpoint, Brooklyn, becoming a member of the colourful Polish neighborhood within the space. 

He’s made a house at Barclays Middle, set to return for his eleventh bout within the area. He’s change into a favourite in entrance of the Brooklyn crowd, representing each the borough and the “enormous” native Polish neighborhood. 

Kownacki’s tenth struggle at Barclays Middle introduced him his first loss. Now, he returns for the eleventh time with a clearer focus. 

And a profession that should get again on monitor. 

“I’m residing proof of the American Dream,” Kownacki mentioned. “My dad and mom got here right here with completely nothing, they simply moved right here from Poland to provide my household a greater life, me and my brothers. I’m residing proof. I’m combating on nationwide TV, Barclays Middle, it doesn’t get higher than that. You may make it in New York, you may make it wherever. I feel I’m residing proof that the American dream remains to be alive and effectively. All you’ve acquired to do is figure exhausting, and the alternatives will come and also you’ve acquired to care for it.”

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