"We do a lot of talking because my uncle Emanuel is someone who was great in boxing, just like his grandfather," Sugarhill Steward is guiding the career of Nico Ali Walsh, who returns this Saturday, live on Sky Sports
Wednesday 20 October 2021 10:50, UK
Muhammad Ali's grandson Nico Ali Walsh is learning how to cope with "what people think" from Sugarhill Steward, who also entered boxing in the shadow of a family member.
Ali Walsh scored a knockout on his pro debut and will step into the ring for the second time, live on Sky Sports, on Saturday night on the undercard to the world title fight between Jamel Herring and Shakur Stevenson.
Ali Walsh's trainer is Steward, who also trains Tyson Fury, and whose uncle Emanuel was a Hall of Fame trainer.
"He learns a lot from me," Steward told Sky Sports about Ali Walsh.
"We do a lot of talking because my uncle Emanuel is someone who was great in boxing, just like his grandfather.
"I tell him things he needs to know.
"We talk about things which are every helpful to him.
"The things I've gone through, the questions I've had to answer, what people think.
"It relaxes him so he doesn't have to go through the same thing."
Steward said about Ali Walsh's potential: "He is a novice, almost an amateur. This is about making him grow.
"There is no rush to make Nico into something. We will take our time.
"I talked to [his promoter] Bob Arum and the rest of the Top Rank guys and we all agree that we'll move him accordingly.
"Nico is in a great situation because he can pick his own fights and get exposure, which most fighters don't get."
Asked if Ali Walsh must cope with extra pressure due to his legendary grandfather, Steward said: "Yes but, you know what? I love pressure, I live for it, I love the excitement. Do they call that pressure?"
Arum, who promoted 27 of Muhammad Ali's fights and now promotes his grandson, said about the pressure: "Well, he'll have to deal with it but he seems like a well-grounded young man.
"He's very intelligent. He's educated and he appears to me to be like a perfect sort of athlete that you want to introduce to the public, even if he wasn't Ali's grandson.
"It's really on his shoulders, carrying on the legacy of the greatest fighter of all time, but if anybody can handle it, I think this kid can handle it.
"I actually want to bring him over to London to fight. They'll go crazy."
Ali Walsh previously said: "I am honoured to continue the fighting legacy that my grandfather started. It is a responsibility I don't take lightly."
October 24 - Top Rank in Atlanta
Jamel Herring vs Shakur Stevenson - WBO super-featherweight title
October 31 - Top Rank in New York
Jose Zepeda vs Josue Vargas
November 6 - Top Rank in Las Vegas
Mikaela Mayer vs Maiva Hamadouche - IBF and WBO super-featherweight titles
November 6 - BOXXER SERIES in Liverpool
November 20 - BOXXER in London
Richard Riakporhe vs Olanrewaju Durodola
Caroline Dubois professional debut
November 20 - Top Rank in Las Vegas
Terence Crawford vs Shawn Porter - WBO welterweight title
December 11 - BOXXER in Birmingham
December 11 - Top Rank in Las Vegas
Vasiliy Lomachenko vs Richard Commey
December 17 - Top Rank in Montreal
Artur Beterbiev vs Marcus Browne - IBF and WBC light-heavyweight titles
December 18 - Top Rank in Glasgow
Josh Taylor vs Jack Catterall - undisputed super-lightweight title