With the support of his hometown Fort McMurray crowd, Thomas Deneve will look to remain undefeated Friday night at the Casman Centre.
Deneve (2-0) will put his unblemished record on the line in an amateur lightweight bout with Scott Bouchard (2-1) at Prestige FC 10, who’s making the trip from Ste. Rose du Lac, MB.
This will be Deneve’s second straight bout in Fort McMurray, and he said it’s a nice boost having the full support of the crowd.
“It’s definitely beneficial for me,” said Deneve in an interview.
“It definitely has a toll on some people’s mentality.”
Deneve’s last contest at Prestige FC 9 was a quick 25-second TKO victory over Daniel Kobsar, which was preceded by another 30-second knockout in his amateur debut.
Despite making quick work of each of his opponents so far, Deneve, 22, said he’s not actually rushing in for the kill, like it may appear he does.
“I look at my opponents, and I can read them very well, in my opinion,” said Deneve.
“If I can tell my opponent is injured or dazed, I’m going to smother them. I’m not going to stand there and let them recover.”
With his two wins coming in a combined 55 seconds, Deneve said his fast success has stemmed from his strategy of responding to his opponent’s reactions.
Although he’s not expecting another quick knockout, he guarantees this contest will not go the distance.
“I’m not going to say I’m going to do it in under 30 seconds, and I’m not going to say I’m going to finish it in the first round, but I can promise it’s not going to go to a decision. I’ll never let my fights go to decision,” said Deneve.
“I’m either going to get knocked out, or I’m going to knock someone out.”
Bouchard Seeking First Career Finish
While Bouchard, 25, may hold the same amount of victories as Deneve, he’s still seeking his first victory by stoppage.
Both of Bouchard’s victories have been unanimous decisions, but he said he’s looking to turn the tide Friday night.
“With both of his fights being fast, I’m assuming he comes out fast,” said Bouchard in an interview.
“If he comes out fast, I can capitalize on it. If I can get the finish, awesome.”
Although the stoppage is something Bouchard would like to achieve for the first time, he said he’s fully aware of the advantage he has in the cage-time department.
Bouchard has spent over 19 minutes in the cage in his three career amateur bouts, nearly 20 times the amount of Deneve.
“I never expect it to end early. I always expect it to go the full nine minutes,” said Bouchard.
“If it goes that far, I’ve been there before, but it’s something new for him.”
Prior to this contest, all three of Bouchard’s bouts have been at featherweight.
He said the move to 155 pounds will allow him not to focus as much on the weight cut as previous fights, allowing him to feel even more fresh than he already did at 145 pounds.
“My coach felt this was a good fight,” said Bouchard.
“I believe in him, so if he says I can do it, I’ll do it.”
“I’d like to thank everyone down at my gym, Sweet Science, and all my family and close friends. I’d also like to thank my sponsors Sangsters and Fort McMurray Autobody. I’d also like to thank to the Fort McMurray community for having my back.”
“I can’t reiterate how much I love this gym (Queen City Martials Arts). I think it’s just next level. Also a quick shoutout to my training partners: Sam, who’s also fighting on this card, Danny, Sean, Hajar, and Duane Ludwig.”