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El Harrak: A fighting Hart

Local pugilist off to hot start to professional career

Posted: November 5, 2008 10:53 p.m.
Updated: November 6, 2008 4:55 a.m.

Hart graduate Said El Harrak poses in his boxing stance Wednesday. El Harrak, 26, won in a first-round knockout of Alex Stringer Oct. 11.

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Maybe it was Muhammad Ali who started it, but boxing has gone with braggadocios as much as peanut butter has gone with jelly.

So to hear another boxer, especially a young one, spout out about how he's going to be a contender, isn't particularly believable.

Said El Harrak doesn't care.

The 2000 Hart High graduate has won his first three professional fights. The junior welterweight turned pro earlier this year.

He's had the pleasure, or displeasure, of sparring with boxing stars such as Manny Pacquiao, Ricky Hatton and Zab Juda.

It was mostly displeasure with Juda, as the welterweight fighter's camp dropped El Harrak after just two weeks of sparring with him.

Why?

"I was killing him," El Harrak said.

Big words from the fighter.

"Why not?" he said about being confident. "You've got to have confidence."

El Harrak is 3-0 with one knockout thus far.

There are many boxers in the world like him - young, hopeful, stars in their eyes.

El Harrak resents being lumped into the "dime-a-dozen" category, though.

It's difficult to gauge his potential, though, because reporters give more ink to the main event than the undercard.

But there is some media chatter about the fighter.

After El Harrak's last fight - an Oct. 11 first-round knockout of the unheralded Alex Stringer at the Palms Casino in Las Vegas, a Folsom newspaper named News Blaze was complimentary of his skills.

Writer Pete Allman used the words "very promising" when naming El Harrak.

El Harrak's name lit up the casino's arena prior to his battle. Afterward, he was asked for autographs and photographs.

"Best feeling in the world," he said. "Makes me feel like I'm doing it."

His trainer, Eddie Mustafa Muhammad, seems to think a lot of El Harrak.

"In my own estimation, Said's one of the best prospects out right now," Mustafa Muhammad said. "He came to me the complete package. He can box. He can punch. He's intelligent."

In fact, the trainer thinks El Harrak will be a champion soon.

The 26-year-old Moroccan, born in London, was an amateur boxer for 7 ½ years before fighting fellow fledgling fighter Trenton Titsworth May 2 at Chumash Casino in Santa Ynez. El Harrak won a four-round unanimous decision.

He then followed that up with a unanimous decision victory July 30.

El Harrak was scheduled to fight on Nov. 1 at the Home Depot Center in Carson, but on the morning of the fight, his opponent pulled out.

The 6-foot, 143-pound boxer is next scheduled to fight Dec. 5, unless another fight comes along before that.

For more information on El Harrak, visit myspace.com/jabcityl

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