Record: 3-0-1, 1 KO
Height: 5-8 1/2
Born: 6/10/79 in Teaneck, NJ
Lives: Jersey City, New Jersey
by Brian Skjold for TalkingBoxing.com
4/22 – Undefeated junior lightweight prospect, Danny McDermott doesn’t fit the usual mold. Many prospects these days are young, baby-faced kids, coming out of the Olympics or highly decorated amateurs with more titles than you can shake a stick at. But, McDermott is just a little bit different. Danny has the amateur experience (54-6) and now enters the sport under the tutelage of one of the best trainers in the business, Buddy McGirt. At 25 years of age McDermott carries a maturity into the ring that is uncommon among many prospects.
“I’m glad I didn’t turn pro sooner. I think I’m more at a mature level and I can see things a little better. I think it’s perfect to turn pro at 25. Look at Bernard Hopkins, he’s 40 and he’s not even considered an old man.”
Danny is a military veteran, enrolling at 17 in the Army National Guard, and he currently owns his own gold shop (Gold and Silver Exchange). It takes an extraordinary commitment to be a professional fighter, not to mention running a business at the same time.
“I own a gold shop in Newark, NJ and I’m there from 9-3. When I get out I just head to the gym right away. When I get home, I’m just exhausted.”
Growing up Danny was exposed to boxing at an early age, and it quickly became part of his life.
“My dad, he fought in the Marines. He used to always have Ring magazines everywhere around the house. My brother and I used to pick them up and read the stories about the fighters and we just got into it.”
Danny’s love for boxing quickly grew into a desire to become a fighter. But, sometimes when you’re a kid, you just have to wait.
“We used to harass my dad every day to take us to a boxing gym. And, the closest we got to it was, he hung up a heavy bag in the basement and we used to work out on that.”
By age 14, McDermott finally got his chance to go to the gym. And as we say, “The rest is history”. Even at this young age, Danny had his priorities and knew exactly what he wanted from the sport.
“When I started boxing, I didn’t want to be an amateur. I always wanted to be a pro. Some kids’ goal is to win an Olympic gold medal. My dream was to be a world champ.”
One of the hardest things to do in boxing is make the switch from amateur style to professional style. Many things in pro boxing are just a little bit different than the amateurs. But, Danny feels he’s had the right style all along.
“In the amateurs it’s all about non-stop. It doesn’t even matter if you’re throwing [punches] precisely. Now that I’m a pro, I can settle down and pick my shots. Now, I get to sit down and think what I’m going to do before, instead of just going in there and raising hell, trying to throw big punches.”
Now that McDermott has successfully made the jump from amateur to pro he has a few short term goals he is striving for. But, all the while he is keeping his ultimate goal in mind.
“I’d like to get my record up to 10-0 by the time the year ends. Later on, hopefully get a small belt, just as a stepping stone. And then, hopefully move into the top 20 or 15. It’s just a matter of staying busy and fighting the right guys at the right level.”
While staying focused on his goals and his career, Danny also sees the potential for some big match-ups down the road that just might feature some of tomorrow’s stars.
“There’s a few guys I’d like to fight. All the up and coming guys in my division. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., I definitely want to fight. He’s moving at an incredible pace. By the time I get to 15-0, he might be 55-0! Hopefully, we can get on a pace where we can fight every month.”
Under the watchful eye of head trainer Buddy McGirt, Danny McDermott is sure to learn a lot from the experience. But, as both McDermott and McGirt will agree, there are some things you can only learn in the ring.
“I had a cut in my last fight. That’s one of the reasons I’ve been off. I had 6 stitches over my right eye. I got cut at the end of the 2nd round, so I fought through the 3rd and the 4th rounds. Buddy said he was proud of me because I didn’t even lose focus. I knew it was a step. He’s like, ‘Some guys look to quit when they get cut.’ And he said, ‘You went out there, you kept fighting and throwing punches.’ He said, ‘You can’t teach somebody that.'”
If everything goes as planned, McDermott will be well on his way to a achieving his dream of winning a world title. But, along with that dream Danny hopes to make an impact on the sport of boxing and leave a lasting impression.
“I’d like to think I could inspire people someday. If I could just make one fan happy, it means more to me than a million dollar fight. As long as one person walked away satisfied and felt like they got their money’s worth.”
Danny McDermott has all the ingredients to be a great pro. He has the determination, the solid skills, a great personality and a crowd pleasing style that can keep the fans coming back.
“I’ve got a lot of heart. I don’t quit. Every time I’m going to come in, I’m going to come to fight.”
What more could we ask for?