Dublin hero Jono Carroll isn't taking Maxi Hughes lightly ahead of their highly-anticipated showdown next week - with 'Kong Kong' revealing he is treating their bout like a world title fight.
Recent world title challenger Carroll (18-1-1, 4 KOs) takes on Hughes (20-5-2, 4 KOs) in the main event of a massive #MTKFightNight at Production Park Studios in Wakefield on August 12, live in the US on ESPN+ in association with Top Rank and worldwide on IFL TV.
A victory in that fight could pave the way for another crack at world honours for Carroll, but he insists he'll already be visualising that scenario when he steps into the ring with Hughes.
Carroll said: "Every fight is like snakes and ladders, so it's very important I treat them all as a world title fight. I want to go in there and put on a good display that makes a statement, and show that I'm still learning and improving in every bout.
"It's going to just be me and him in the ring, so I don't see it being that different with no fans. I have tunnel vision when I fight and I don't hear the crowd, I only hear my coach Albert's voice.
"There's going to be some strange aspects for sure, but it won't bother me. I usually feed off the energy of the crowd during the ring walk so it takes that excitement away, but I'm there to do a job and I'm going to take care of it."
Carroll vs. Hughes is part of a huge show on August 12, which also features Sean McComb taking on Siar Ozgul, Craig MacIntyre going up against Darren Surtees, Sahir Iqbal and Maredudd Thomas clashing for the WBC Youth title, and the return of Pierce O’Leary.
It kicks off a brilliant run of #MTKFightNight events throughout the summer, with the likes of Lewis Crocker, Lee McGregor, Gary Cully, Akeem Ennis Brown, Dan Azeez and more all in action over the coming months.