"I think I earned my spot and all I need is a shot"
Julio Diaz, Boxingtalk's #6 rated lightweight, will make the first defense of his IBF title when he faces three-time title challenger Levander Johnson on February 11th at the Coors Amphitheatre in Chula Vista, CA. Diaz captured the title when he bested Javier Jauregui over a dozen rounds to win a majority decision. In this fight he wants to make a statement by dropping and stopping Levander Johnson. He then hopes to land a big fight with one of the other champions. Don't miss what else the IBF lightweight champion had to say.Jose Aguirre: You have a fight coming up on February 11th, how's training going for this fight?
Julio Diaz: "We just started training a couple of weeks ago. Hopefully it will go through and things go smooth. Good, we're training very strong and we're feeling great right now being in shape."JA: What type of things are you working on in order to prepare for your fight?
JD: "As of right now we're working on conditioning. We're working on speed and power. We have to try to drop Levander Johnson. We have to try and put him fast. Then it will be safe to fight my next fight."JA: Do you not consider it a mistake thinking about going in the for the knockout?
JD: "No, it just gives me a bit motivation. It gives me something to look forward to and have something to go hunting for."JA: What do you know about Levander Johnson and what can you tell us about him?
JD: "I don't know much about Levander Johnson yet but I'm just getting to know a few things about him. I'm just studying him. He's up there and he earned his spot for a reason. he has punching power and good skills. I just have to better that night."JA: What can the fans expect from you on that night?
JD: "A more aggressive fighter and a more motivated fighter now as a champion I just feel different. You just feel like you're trying to defend something that you don't want him to take away from you. Like a little kid trying to protect his candy. The difference is the motivation that I'm going to have."JA: Give us your feelings on becoming world champion?
JD: "It's a great feeling to finally accomplish a dream that you've had since you were a kid and all that work you've done finally paid off. It's just a great relief. It gives you alot more motivation to go forward and know that you can actually accomplish things. And you want to accomplish more."JA: Give us your thoughts on the other champions and fighters in your division?
JD: "We have some great champions out there. You have Juan Diaz, (Diego) Corrales and (Jose Luis) Castillo and I'll go up against any of them any day. I've been trying to get a fight with any of them. I guess when the time is right they'll decide and we'll decide to. For now I have to fight and this is the way I'm going."JA: What kind of impact do you want to leave on the sport of boxing?
JD: "I want to leave the kind of impact the great fighters do like (Felix) Trinidad, (Oscar) De La Hoya and (Marco Antonio) Barrera. The impact that these fighters are leaving. Being a great fighter, actually taking risky fight and fighting anybody out there and succeeding."JA: What can we expect from Julio Diaz for the year 2005?
JD: "Alot of great things. As long as they are able to give me these opportunities I'm going to jump on them and I'm going to take them. And I want to come out with shining stars every time. I think I earned my spot and all I need is a shot. An opportunity to prove myself. I never asked anyone to hand me anything I just ask them to put me where it's at. From there it's on me."JA: Is there anything you want to say to the boxing public all around the world and on Boxingtalk.com?
JD: "I want to give thanks to all the fans that supported the Diaz brothers. Not just myself, my brother Antonio as well. I just want to let them know that we're still here and we're working very hard to stay up there and give them great fights the way we have. This year is going to be great. We're going to come out here hungrier than before."
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