Niagara Gazette

Sports

February 24, 2014

Casal returns to the ring Thursday

Niagara Gazette — NIAGARA FALLS — In person, Nick Casal is mellow, cordial and soft spoken.

But put him in a boxing ring and something comes out of him. He turns into a brute.

The Niagara Falls native has been waiting a long time for Thursday night, when he will don the trunks and fight Shakha Moore in the main event at the Fight on the Falls, which will be held at the Niagara Falls Event Center. Casal has fought in Buffalo numerous times as a professional, but this will truly be a pro fight in his hometown.

“I feel it is a good thing,” said the 28-year old. “I’m used to the pressure. It has been like that my whole career. It is nothing new. I am happy to be fighting in my hometown.”

Casal, who went through a routine workout on Sunday afternoon and landed blows against basically a human target with striking veracity and rapidity, owns a sparkling 23-4-1 record in the professional ranks and has won 17 fights by knockout. Thursday will be the 5-foot-7, 147-pound welterweight’s first fight since October 2011 in Los Angeles’ Staples Center.

That is a long time. But Casal, who irrigates himself routinely with a concoction consisting of cucumber and watermelon juice (which cannot be bought but has to be made), is not concerned.

“Not really,” he said. “I will be a little rusty, I expect that. But I was in the gym after that, and I never stopped coming to the gym. I’m ready. I am peaking at the right time and will be ready for Thursday.”

Moore is a 37-year-old with a career 11-19-3 record. He has lost his last four fights.

“I know he is a southpaw and he switches it up,” said Casal, who is trained by his father Ray. “He is a good fighter, and game, very game. His record may lie about good he really is. He is a good fighter, and I expect him to come 100 percent.”

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