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Interview: Rafael "Listo" Gaitan & Mark “El Guero” Vasquez at S.W.E.A.T. GYM

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For as much as I harp on boxing being an individual sport, the highest levels of success, are consistently achieved with a strong team. The circle outside the ring be it managers, promoters, training partners or whoever pro boxers align themselves with, serve as the backbone to careers.

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The first sounds I heard upon entering the famed S.W.E.A.T Boxing & Training facility in Irving, were not gloves working the mitts but that of loud laughter! Grand Prairies young phenom boxer Rafael “Listo” Gaitan stands tall amongst the group of 10 and is all smiles while his hands are being wrapped for an evening of sparring. The crowd, which also includes another high-level DFW prospect in Mark “El Guero” Vasquez, is laughing hysterically at something Hector Vasquez said.

My ears fail me unable to listen in on the conversation, as noise from the eager gym members training grows louder. The old-school-no-A.C. style boxing facility is packed this hot Texas summer night. Listo Gaitan, Mark and the rest of the crew are still laughing as Hector is now more demonstrative with his body. The chemistry and great vibe they give off spells every bit of a tight knit camaraderie. The group ready to back their men as sparring begins.

( video via LongLiveBoxing )

Listo Gaitan is met with a familiar name around Dallas boxing circles, Samuel Clarkson (22-5). The two engage in a spirited 6 round “workout” leaving both men a few pounds lighter sweating profusely. Young Gaitan performed well against a high-level veteran fighter. Listos next opponent for the ABO Light Heavyweight title September 28th at the Southern Junction Nightclub in Irving, TX, is Neller Obregon and while he is 11-2, I wonder how he’d do against Samuel Clarkson.

( video via LongLiveBoxing )

Next to spar is highly touted Mark “El Guero” Vasquez. His session is far more intense! Resembled more of a fight with neither boxer willing to back down. Mark gets the better of the exchanges but dug deep! The kind of preparation in training camp yields results on fight night.

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Both men have upcoming separate bouts headlined by Listo Gaitan on September 28th at the Southern Junction Nightclub in Irving. Outside the ring the fellowship amongst their circle of trust is strong! In the ring, boxers are on an island, away from it a solid team is critical. With that item scratched off the list, both boxers fully focus on training with each pushing the other.

LongLiveBoxing had a chance to speak to each boxer individually.

  • Article Written by:

  • Manuel “Hopper” Dominguez

  • @ManuelDStayTru

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