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WATCH: Kurt Scoby on overcoming challenges, upcoming fight with Dakota Linger

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Kurt “Scooby” Scoby celebrates during OTX Fight Night on Friday, August 18, 2023 at OTE Arena in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Adam Hagy/OTX)

 

Some fighters may take one look at Dakota Linger’s record and consider him a tune-up opponent, but not Kurt Scoby.

Instead, Scoby understands how looking past a spoiler like Linger can derail an upcoming boxer’s momentum and is hoping to avoid that kind of letdown when they meet on Friday, April 19 at the Overtime Elite Arena in Atlanta.

“You just gotta stay focused on any opponent. I feel like a lot of people slept on him but I don’t sleep on anyone. I don’t care who it is, we’ll be prepared for the person that’s in front of us,” said the DiBella Entertainment-promoted Scoby (13-0, 11 knockouts) of Linger (13-6-3, 9 KOs), whom he will face in an eight-round junior welterweight bout, which headlines an OTX card on DAZN.

Linger, 29, of Buckhannon, W.V., has been matched mostly as an “opponent” since turning pro nine years ago, but has pulled off his share of upsets, including a second round blowout of Josue Vargas in 2022 and a six-round draw with the previously unbeaten Mathew Gonzalez in 2021. His last appearance was in June of 2023, when he was stopped in nine rounds by Reshat Mati.

Trainer Don Saxby, who works alongside Leon “Kat” Taylor to prepare Scoby at Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn, N.Y., says this will be Scoby’s last eight round bout.

“I’m not gonna call him a tuneup because he didn’t take him lightly because he did put up a good fight with two upcoming guys,” said Saxby. “This guy is a fight to get us back in the loop of fighting again.”

Saxby adds that, since the furthest Scoby has gone as a pro is six rounds, people haven’t seen all of what he has to offer yet, though he’s hoping this fight can change that.

“They have not gotten the chance to see him fight. The most he’s gone is six rounds in his last fight with Narciso Carmona. They kind of got a glimpse because as the rounds go further he gets better. You start seeing a little more of him like his athleticism, his ability to adjust, his ability to go out there and perform to the best of what he’s been taught. He’s very smart, especially with the things we’re showing him,” said Saxby.

In a video interview with The Ring, Scoby spoke about a variety of subjects, including his decision to move from his hometown of Duarte, Calif. to New York during the pandemic with just $11 in his pocket, his experiences growing up in foster care and why he switched to a vegan diet.

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