Dan Rafael: Franny Smith

Another trainer change for Price

December, 26, 2013
PriceScott Heavey/Getty ImagesHeavyweight contender David Price hopes a new trainer will help him get out of the slump.

In mid-October, highly regarded British heavyweight prospect David Price, a 2008 Olympic bronze medalist at super heavyweight, announced he had switched trainers, leaving longtime cornerman Franny Smith to work with Adam Booth, who has had success with former titleholder David Haye and super middleweight contender George Groves.

The 30-year-old Price (15-2, 13 KOs), the 2012 ESPN.com prospect of the year, said at the time that he believed Booth would be the right man to help him get back on track after back-to-back shocking knockouts losses to American contender Tony Thompson earlier this year.

Then Price signed with German promoter Sauerland Event and his return was planned for Dec. 14 against Evgeny Orlov. But Price came down with a virus and withdrew from the fight.

Then came word on Thursday that Price had cut ties with Booth and has hired American trainer Tommy Brooks, an experienced trainer who has worked with a number of heavyweights, including Evander Holyfield, Mike Tyson and brothers Wladimir and Vitali Klitschko.

Price made the announcement, adding that Brooks would come to his hometown of Liverpool, England, for training camps.

“I have been waiting for the phone to ring to work with a fighter who can make it to the top,” Brooks said. “The heavyweight division is becoming very exciting again with a fresh, young crop of talent coming through, and Britain has some of the best prospects, but David has all the attributes needed to dominate the division.”

Their first fight together will be the rescheduled bout with Orlov (14-12-1, 10 KOs), which will take place on Jan. 25 in Stutgart, Germany on the undercard of the rematch between cruiserweight titlist Marco Huck (36-2-1, 25 KOs) and Firat Arslan (33-6-2, 21 KOs).

As for the reason Price split with Booth?

“All was good with Adam but we couldn't reach an agreement on my management situation, so he stepped down,” Price said. “I got Tommy over straight away as there's no time to waste, and I liked him and his training methods.”

Price signs with new promoter

November, 18, 2013
Last month, British heavyweight hopeful David Price, in an effort to reinvigorate his career after back-to-back upset knockout losses to American contender Tony Thompson this year, teamed up with trainer Adam Booth. On Monday, Price made another big change, signing with German promoter Sauerland Event.

"I'm excited to be joining Europe's biggest promoters," said Price, who holds the British and Commonwealth titles. "Kalle and Nisse [Sauerland] are great blokes, and I am looking forward to working with them. This is a fresh start for me. I can't wait to get back into action and with a new team around me. I feel I can pick up where I left off and become a world champion."

Price, a 2008 Olympic bronze medalist and the 2012 ESPN.com prospect of the year, was viewed by many as a future star in a division in need of one. But then came the stunning KO losses to Thompson, in the second round in February and in the fifth round in July.

The losses left Price's career in doubt, but he split from longtime trainer Franny Smith to hook up with Booth and now joins Sauerland Event as Frank Maloney, Price's former promoter, gets set to retire.

There is no return date set yet for Price (15-2, 13 KO), 30, but the Sauerland brothers said that they plan to keep him active in 2014, having Price box on their shows throughout Europe before returning to his hometown of Liverpool -- where both losses to Thompson took place -- next fall.