Richard Quiñones (Journeymen Boxing) – After a standout amateur career, Kevin Asmat is set to make his pro debut when he steps into the ring Friday, July 22nd, at The Claridge Hotel in Atlantic City against another debuting boxer in Dallas Holden.
The 21-year-old Asmat complied an impressive amateur record of 96-14. He has won several notable titles, including the NJ Golden Gloves, the NJ State titles as well as Elite Heat Region Tournament. But, he might have gained his most experience fighting outside the U.S
“I have competed interntionally a lot,” Asmat said earlier in the week “I have been to Ireland, the Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Peru and Canada.”
It seems every spot for Asmat has resulted in wins, titles and much-deserved exposure.
A native of North Bergen, Asmat is soft spoken and very humble and when he steps into the ring for the first time as a pro he will be fighting as a super bantamweight (122lbs). However, if you have ever seen him fight, he fights more like a lightweight with his speed and quickness and hits with power like a middleweight.
He picked up the sport at age 17 making an impression on some of the trainers at the gym.
“I always knew I had talent in my hands, but never really went to a boxing gym until one day my friend joined me and asked me to go with him. I started to hit the bag and right away trainers came up to me and started to ask questions to me, like if I have ever boxed before. They were telling me I was heavy-handed.”
However, what truly drives Asmat like any good son is his father, who had a storied amateur career in Peru.
“But what made me really take this sport on is my father, my father had an amateur record of 98 wins , 4 loses and 58 of those wins came by knockout. He was part of the Olympic team for Peru. And I just want to finish what my father couldn’t finish because of some personal issues.”
Asmat is a very fiery boxer in the ring, but when you really stop and watch him, you can see he is a very well-rounded fighter.
“My style come from me, myself and I,” he proclaims. “I do study a lot of the great fighters like Marvin Hagler, Sugar Ray Leonard, Floyd Mayweather Jr, Genady golovkin, Roberto Duran and Julio Cesar Chavez.
A self-proclaimed entertaining fighter, Asmat proved that in the 2015 New Jersey Golden Gloves tournament, when he was pitted with newly named US Olympic boxer Shakur Stevenson.
“I can adapt to any type of fighter. I can be a counter-puncher, an aggressor, a boxer-puncher, or a boxer. I can do it all, it just depends on who is in front of me.”
In his fight against Stevenson, he was able to adapt and make it a close bout, which he ultimately lost.
“I actually learned a lot from that fight. Hats off to Shakur for making the 2016 Rio Games and Olympic team, but yeah I learned a lot. It was my third time every fighting a southpaw and it was a bit awkward, but I believe if I had one more round with him the decision would have been differently because I adapted as the rounds passed by, especially now with my new trainer I have been taught how to make fights easier and how to hurt people. I wish Shakur the best, but I just hope he doesn’t come across my way because he won’t have the same result as the last time we fought. Things will be a lot more different now and it wouldn’t be a smart move for him.”
That type of quiet confidence is what every young fighter needs to succeed in the ring, but they also need a good team around them — something Asmat has.
“My head trainer would have to be the one and only Diego Rosario. Diego has been in championship fights several times as a fighter and a trainer. He trained multiple world champions and has made fighters become world champions. It’s an honor to have him in my corner and guiding me to become the new world champion of the word. I train out of a gym in Paterson called True Warriors”
Wise beyond his years, Asmat has a good grasp and understanding of the sport, and he realizes there are no guarantees the boxing world. However, if you put in the necessary time and effort to perfect your craft, then you can walk away on your own terms with a healthy body and mind.
“I have my associates degree in business, but at the moment I stopped going to school to dedicate 100 percent in boxing. Because boxing isn’t a sport it’s a way a life and you can lose your life in the ring. Us fighters put our life on the line every single time we step in the ring. So I believe we can’t be doing 2 things at once because that’s how we can increase our chance of getting hurt. We must put our whole life in this, in order to become successful and leave the sport healthy.”
When he steps into the ring on July 22nd, Asmat will most likely be thinking about the opening bell, his opponent, the guys at the gym, but most of all, his father as he attempts to finish what he started many years ago in Peru.
And when the loving son, throws his first punch and gets hit for the first time as a man, hoping to make his father proud he will have come full circle and complete what his father started years ago in Peru.
Something tells me, his father is already proud for him making it this far.
But don’t tell that to Asmat
“My father has influenced me, but not in the sense as he pushed me to become a boxer. He influenced me by all his achievements he has done as an amateur,” a beaming Asmat concludes.