Chris Arreola thrives on crowd-pleasing brawls, but the heavyweight contender is looking to make short work of Frederic Kassi.
“They don’t pay me overtime,” the two-time world title challenger says. “I’m getting paid as soon as the bell rings, so the sooner I get him outta there, the sooner I can get back to training camp.”
Chris Arreola (36-4, 31 KOs) will bring that mentality into the ring Saturday when he takes on "Big Fred” Kassi (18-3, 10 KOs) at the Don Haskins Center in El Paso, Texas, in a fight airing on CBS (4 p.m. ET/1 p.m. PT).
Arreola has stopped two of his last five opponents in the first round, scoring KOs of Eric Molina in February 2012 and Seth Mitchell in September 2013. Molina lasted into the ninth round against heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder in June.
“I want to get [Kassi] outta there as soon as possible," says Arreola, who has scored 13 first-round stoppages in his career. "I want another quick one so I can go home safely to my wife, son and daughter."
Arreola, 34, figured he would have another early night after flooring Curtis Harper in the first round in March, but he ended up having to slug his way to a crowd-pleasing eight-round victory.
"I don’t care if I get hit," Arreola says. "No matter who it is, they’re going to get hit harder.”
Kassi, 35, was knocked cold by southpaw Amir Mansour in the seventh round in November, ending a three-fight winning streak that included two KOs.
“He’s a good defensive fighter with fast hands. Something we've worked on is that he switches a lot,” Arreola says of Kassi. “I have to stay on my game when he switches, because he can land a punch from any angle."
Arreola’s last two defeats, in April 2013 and May 2014, came against Bermane Stiverne, who lost his world title to Wilder in January.
Arreola lost to Vitali Klitschko in September 2009 in his first world title fight. He knows an impressive win over Kassi could land him his third shot at a heavyweight championship.
"There’s added intensity to this fight,” he says, “with the fact that Deontay Wilder could be on the horizon.”
For complete coverage of Arreola vs Kassi, visit our fight page.