Wladimir Klitschko Being Trained by BanksWritten by Lee Cleveland
Lineal heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko is being trained by Jonathan Banks for his November 10th title defense against Mariusz Wach.
Banks, who will also serve as Klitschko's chief second on fight night, will replace long-time trainer Emanuel Steward, who passed away yesterday.
Its not yet known who the younger Klitechko's new permanent trainer will be.
The 30 year old Banks, a professional fighter himself, has been a sparring partner for Wladimir Klitschko for quite some time and is also a pupil of legendary trainer Emanuel Steward.
Sporting a professional record of 28-1-1, Banks will face top 10 heavyweight Seth Mitchell just a week after the Klitschko fight. And incidentally, he's the same Jonathan Banks who allegedly started a firestorm of controversy surrounding the legendary trainer's status. Early on Thursday, Banks tweeted the sad news that Steward had passed away before subsequently deleting both posts from his account.
Emanuel Steward's absence will undoubtedly be felt. Nevertheless, Wladimir attempted to downplay the transition (prior to Steward's death)
Pictured: Wladimir Klitschko
Just prior to Mr. Steward's death, Klitschko stated, "There is nothing I have to change or adjust. I have always talked with Banks through our sparring sessions and about the strategy for the fights all of these years. He has a very analytical mind. I think he was a good student of Emanuel. He knows the business and he knows boxing. He knows me and how I function, so there is nothing new I have to adjust."
Wladimir Klitschko praised his new trainer, insisting he was impressed with Banks' performance and how he accepted the challenging task of training the heavyweight champion of the world.
The 36 year old champion also stated Banks' role will be the same as Steward's. He will help Klitschko strategize and fine-tune in preparation for Wach.
Klitschko sorely misses the Hall of Fame trainer but the lineage to Emanuel Steward and his fabled Kronk Gym is - and will be - present via Jonathan Banks.
Pictured: Emanuel Steward, foreground, and Jonathan Banks
"I'm very experienced and I have the knowledge from all the years I have done. Fine tuning and the strategy was what we were always working on with Emanuel, which was enjoyable. Johnathon has been growing up in the house of Emanuel. He has the knowledge and the spirit of Steward's Kronk Gym," added Klitschko.
November 10th will mark the first time in 8 years Wladimir Klitschko won't have Emanuel Steward in his corner.
FightSaga was a huge fan of the iconic trainer. Our condolences go to the family, friends and the many fight fans who loved and cherished Emanuel Steward.
Lee is Managing Editor of FightSaga.com, a student of the Sweet Science and longtime boxing fan.
A gym rat in the 1990s, Lee was trained by 1976 Olympic Silver Medalist Charles Mooney and several retired seasoned pros. He was also a sparring partner for former WBA Super Middleweight Champion Steve Little who upset Michael Nunn for the WBA Super Middleweight Title in '94.
Lee created FightSaga.com to honor and preserve boxing's rich heritage, chronicle the achievements of top fighters, celebrate the legacy of big fights and provide a fun, educational experience for fight fans.