It would be premature to tag Chris Algieri, a Long Island-based boxer who headlines at the Paramount Theatre in Huntington on Long Island on Saturday night against Curtis Smith, "doc."
Algieri (12-0 with 6 KOs; age 27), who obtained a health and sciences undergrad degree from Stonybrook in 2007 and a Masters from NY Tech in nutrition in 2010, is definitely going to apply to med schools.
But first the Huntington resident wants to take care of some other business; namely, he wants to win a world title. He's already done it in the realm of kickboxing. Algieri won kickboxing crowns at age and 23, and then retired from that sport. "I did everything I had to do," he told me on a phoner, explaining his path to this point, and plans for the future. "I thought I might as well chase another dream. I think I will be world champion in boxing, I think I have what it takes. I'm focused on a title shot in the next two years. I wish to enter med school post boxing career. I don't want to do it currently, I don't even think it's possible. There are not enough hours in the day."
Some of those hours are taken up doing some courses needed for med school, like organic chem, which he does at Touro College. The ring is helpful in decompressing from that intense brain workout. "Boxing gives my brain a rest," he said. "It is definitely a relief to go to the gym, go to something I know. It's kind of a haven for me."
Will the ring be a haven for fellow junior welterweight Smith, a southpaw who brings a 10-5 record with five KOs with him from Georgia?
"I don't know too much about him," Algieri said. "I know he is from the south, from Georgia. He's never been stopped so I'm assuming he's a tough guy. He has a pretty good KO percentage, so I expect a tough, strong guy. I'm not much into watching tape, it's all about rhythm, and you can't judge rhythm from watching tape."
I'm guessing fans should get their money's worth on the main event. Algieri's mindset is to give the people what they want. "I like to see finishes, I do it for me," he said of his preference for KOs. "Like Freddie Roach says, every fight should end in a KO. Yes, it is more dangerous to look for a KO. But I'd like to end every fight inside the distance. It's the hurt business, you got to go in looking to hurt the other guy."
Paging Curtis Smith to the Huntington Theatre, paging Mr. Smith...
Advance tickets, priced at $35, $50 and $100 can be purchased by calling Star Boxing at (718) 823-2000, or by visiting the Star Boxing website, www.StarBoxing.com. Tickets may also be purchased through Ticketmaster (www.ticketmaster.com, Phone 1-800-745-3000) and The Paramount Theater Box Office by calling (631) 673-7300.
The Paramount Theater is located at 370 New York Avenue, Huntington, New York, 11743. For directions and more information, please visit their website at www.paramountny.com.