By Edgar Berlanga (super-middleweight contender)

OVER the past six months my whole life has changed.

I’ve moved out of New York and over to Tampa, Florida permanently. I just built a house from scratch. We designed everything the way we wanted it. I wanted a long driveway and I got that – now I can fit about 20 cars on there. But I haven’t got 20 yet. I always wanted a long driveway.

I’m laying down roots here. I’m from Brooklyn but it’s different right now. I feel like I needed this move for my career. Living in New York is cool and I love New York with all my heart but for my career and my son I think right now we’ve got to be isolated and focused.

It’s a mature move, it’s different, I’ve got to start thinking about the future. It’s not about me no more, it’s about him and my family. Obviously I’m also setting myself up for when I retire from boxing. Obviously I still have money saved, I have a house now so if, God forbid, anything happens, we’re set.

It’s crazy. I lived in New York all my life but as soon as I came out here, boom, I got a house. I’ve been in New York for so long, I was just renting in a luxury building, I never even thought about getting a house but I came out here and got one quick.

A lot of things have changed for me. Living in New York the environment and lifestyle can catch up to you. You feel like you’ve got to keep a certain standard, how you dress and how you look. That’s New York, it’s like a fashion place. But over here I’m in fucking slippers all day, no haircut for weeks and I don’t care. It’s whatever. There’s nobody to impress over here.

My son is two. That means I’m in the terrible twos right now and he be going crazy. He’s about to be three in June so hopefully sooner or later the terrible two stage will be gone.

I’ve actually been sleeping in his room recently, in his bed. It’s only a small bed but for some reason I sleep good there. It’s kinda hard and I like hard beds but my fiance likes soft beds. In camp I like to sleep on hard beds because I feel like I sleep way better but it means I’m sleeping in sheets with dinosaurs on them.

Paddy McCrory is my next opponent and he’s my second Irishman in a row but I don’t got nothing against the Irish, I love Irish people.They got that fighting blood just like Puerto Ricans so it’s going to be something cool against McCrory.

We liked him as an opponent; he’s tough, he’s undefeated and another Irishman. He’s ranked in the sanctioning bodies so he’s not a guy who will just try and survive, run around the whole ring, like a marathon runner. I think it’s going to be something spectacular.

For knockout artists, if we don’t get guys out you already know that people will start talking shit. If you’re a guy that doesn’t really knock people out and you’re just winning then you can keep going like that. But if you’re a knockout artist and you’re not knocking the guy out, that’s when they attack you. I always know now, you’re only as good as your last fight.

For example, Teofimo Lopez bust up Josh Taylor’s ass. They were praising him then but now he fought Jamaine Ortiz, who ran around the whole ring, and now Teofimo’s a bum – they say ‘he fucking sucks’ and they took him off the rankings. I’m just like ‘damn’.

This is the first of my last two fights on my Matchroom contract. Eddie Hearn doesn’t really want to talk to me about who might be next because it’s fight week and it’s not good to overlook your opponent. I’m not really into that. I’d rather handle business and then we can sit down and talk.

Eddie has some good things happening this year but I just need to make sure I look like a superstar this week. I’m in my home town basically, this is little Puerto Rico and there’s going to be a whole bunch of Puerto Ricans.

Ever since hurricane Maria in 2017, which damaged Puerto Rico badly, a lot of people escaped and came out here to Orlando to live.

So this is the 2.0 version of Puerto Rico and I’m amped. You don’t even understand. I can’t stop moving, I’m anxious because it’s like I’m back home. Now it’s on me to put on a show.