Broner has talent, but is insecure of his abilities, Atlas says


    Adrien BronerFight commentator and trainer Teddy Atlas spoke with Tha Boxing Voice recently regarding one of the more enigmatic and flamboyant operators in the sport today.

    Adrien ‘The Problem’ Broner (30-2, 22 KO’s) is an extremely talented boxer whose crassness makes every stumble he has a celebrated occurrence for the fans who are turned off by his antics.

    He suffered a second career defeat on June 20th when he was out-hustled by the stout workhorse Shawn Porter at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. It was the second time he had been undone by consistent aggressiveness after his maiden loss to Marcos Maidana in 2013 and the blueprint seems very much to be laid on the table.

    Atlas was asked if he thought Broner would be able to compete with the top welterweights around today, bearing in mind his most suitable weight-class has been the source of much debate with many concluding he belongs a few pounds south between 135 and 140 lbs. He answered with an interesting character assessment.

    “If Broner threw half as many punches as he does words he’d be undefeated, alright? I think there’s something missing in him, character-wise inside, deep, deep inside. He’s got talent; a lot of guys have talent, but there’s an insecurity. There’s some kind of real, dark down there, something hidden that he acts this way other than what he really feels. All the bravado you know, all the talk, all the machoism, all that stuff. And he makes you think that maybe sometimes he don’t care.”

    Broner certainly comes across that way. After the Porter loss, he professed indifference in the post-fight interview, saying “at the end of the day everybody in here will still take my autograph and my picture.”

    Atlas feels Broner manufactures this disinterested facade as a safety blanket, so his failures appear to be the result of a lack of discipline, as opposed to a lack of ability.

    “I’ve heard people say, ‘oh if he was more interested and more dedicated he could really be good’. I think that’s what he wants people to say. I think there’s something deep inside that’s unsure of him and what he does is, he leaves open a side door; an escape route where people will say ‘ah if he loses it’s because he didn’t care enough, it’s because he wasn’t dedicated enough.’ When really it’s because he’s too insecure to go out there and put it all on the line and find out how damn good he could really be.”

    “Until he figures that out he’s gonna come up second every time he steps up with guys who have comparable skills.”

    So as far as Atlas can tell, the 25 year old from Cincinnati is holding himself back. How Broner is supposed to address this -if it is accurate- is one for the Freudians. If he continues to perform in the same manner, as though he hasn’t spent all of his reserves in pursuit of victory, there will be a cloak of regret draped over his career when we all look back at what he could have been.