Casamayor-Marquez conference call transcript


Casamayor-Marquez conference call transcript

*All fighter comments have been translated from Spanish to English. 

Dave Itskowitch (Golden Boy): Thank you everyone for joining us today. As I'm sure you all know Casamayor vs. Marquez, a twelve-round fight for Casamayor's world lightweight title, is taking place September 13th at the MGM Grand Garden Area in Las Vegas. It will be distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View, beginning at 9:00 p.m. Eastern Time, 6:00 p.m. Pacific, and at a suggested retail price of $44.95. Tickets for the event are still available and very reasonably priced. This fight is happening on a very important weekend, which is Mexican Independence Day weekend. It's a big fight on a big weekend for Mexican fight fans and they'll get to see one of their own Juan Manuel Marquez challenge for another world title, moving up in weight, challenging Joel Casamayor for the recognized world light weight championship.

The fight is called "The Challenge" and it's aptly named because it's a challenge for Marquez to move up in weight and it's a challenge for Casamayor to take on one of the all time greats in Mexican boxing. To get things started, I'd like to introduce, with a record of 48 4 in1 with 35 KOs, Juan Manuel Marquez.

Juan Manuel Marquez: Well first of all I would like to invite everyone not to miss a great fight that is going to take place in September 13th in Las Vegas.

Dave Itskowitch:     Okay. Defending his title on this show against Juan Manuel is another fighter that's widely considered to be an all time great. He won an Olympic Gold Medal in1992, and is widely regarded as one of the greatest fighters ever to come out of Cuba.He is best known for his epic battles with Diego Corrales of which he emerged victorious in. His record is 36-3-1 with 22 KOs, but anyone who saw those three fights knows that he could have an undefeated record right now. A lot of people think he should have an undefeated record right now because of the fights that he did come up short, but of the smallest of margins. He's coming off of a fight that was on a lot of people's lists for fight of the year against previously unbeaten Michael Katsidis. He knocked Katsidis down twice in the first and he was knocked down later in the fight and came back to score a big tenth round knockout in a very, very exciting fight. Joel is here to show the world that he's still the man at 135, he's the guy to beat and he's ready to take on the challenge of Marquez. Without any further ado, the World Light Weight Champion with a record of 36-3-1 and 22 KOs, Joel Casamayor...

Joel Casamayor:  First off, it's going to be a great fight between two great champions. Marquez and I are two great fighters. It's going to be a very big weekend, not only for Mexican fans, but for myself. I just want to make sure everyone goes out and watches the fight. If you can't make it out there make sure you get on pay-per-view and check it out, it's going to be a great fight.

Q: Joel, it looked to me like not too long ago, between 2006 and 2007 that maybe you weren't having a great time boxing. Maybe it was because of political matters or weren't able to secure the fights you wanted. And then there was the controversial win against Jose Armando Santa Cruz on November 2007. Is it fair to say that you weren't enjoying boxing at that point? And what is different now? Are you reinvigorated and enjoying the sport that much more now?

Joel Casamayor:     Not really. I take every fight serious, every time I get in that ring is something serious, I always train hard. The one thing is just not the mentality like you're saying. Remember for one year I was the 135 pound champion and I didn't get a fight for an entire year.

Then I was a little rusty in the Santa Cruz fight and there are no excuses for that. All we can do is move forward and my mentality is different in this camp when you know you are in a big fight and you need to win this huge fight to get to the next level. You have to get yourself prepared not only physically, but mentally and I think for this fight I'm prepared more mentally then I have ever been in my entire life.

Q:     And this question is for Juan Manuel Marquez. Was this fight the fight you wanted? Or did you more so prefer another fight with Manny Pacquiao?

Juan Manuel Marquez: Yes definitely, I wanted us to fight with Manny Pacquiao because I wasn't happy with that decision. But, now I can tell you I'm happy with this fight, I mean I'm going to put everything on it. Obviously by taking this fight I'm looking forward to fighting bigger fights, bigger fights and I will fight the best in any division.

Q:     And what do you think is going to happen in the fight Pacquiao versus De La Hoya?

Juan Manuel Marquez:   Well, I mean that's a fight that everybody wants to see, everybody is talking about it now. So, obviously I support the Mexican. I support Oscar. Oscar is my promoter and obviously I'm behind him. But, I think it will be a great, great fight.

Q: Juan, was one of the motivations for you to take the fight with Casamayor sort of to make a statement that you will beat Casamayor and then force Manny Pacquiao's hand to show that you're chasing him up the ladder and really trying to get that third fight with him?

Juan Manuel Marquez:  Well first of all I can tell you that Manny Pacquiao knows that on the second fight something strange happened in the decision. But, I can tell you that while I'm fighting at 135 pounds, Joel Casamayor is one of the best 135 pounders. I'm going to prove it to the people and I'm going to prove it to myself that I can do better things in higher divisions. And obviously, if I get the victory on this fight I'm going to prove it, I'm going to keep proving that I'm good in any division.

Q: I mean I know that its an important fight onto itself, Casamayor is obviously a heck of a fighter, but I'm wondering if it was part of your mindset, let me take the fight against a number one light weight and one up Manny who just won a belt but against a fighter that was good, but not considered the best in the division.

Juan Manuel Marquez:  Yes, I choose to fight Joel Casamayor, which I'm telling you he has won the title of the best 135 pounder. Yes fighting him and getting a victory over him, I just wanted to prove that I'm fighting the best like you mentioned. Manny Pacquiao fought David Diaz, he was a champion yes, but not a top fighter in the 135 pound division. But I'm going to prove it, I'm going to prove it to myself, I'm going to prove it the people that I'm the best 135 pounder out there.

Q: Joel what was it that prompted you to seek this particular match as opposed to any of the other potential fights? The light weight division is so loaded and Marquez has never fought in that division and I know there was a lot of discussion about the possibility of maybe a rematch with Nate Campbell who had all the belts and Casamayor of course had the lineage and the ring title. What was the motivation for this particular fight as opposed to that one or any other of the fights that could have been made potentially in the division?

Joel Casamayor:     You know me, I fight the best. Juan's a great fighter; he's won several weight classes championships. It's not only a chance for him, but it's a chance for me mentally because it's also Mexican Independence Day. Remember we're going in September 13 as the underdog and it's important to a lot of Mexican fans.  It's going to be a great fight because Juan is a great fighter and everyone knows I'm a great fighter. And not only is Juan a fighter but he's also smart in the ring just like me, it's going to be a challenge, its going to be a great challenge, its my fist Paper View event that I feel is long over due. And I'm very excited to fight on Mexican Independence Day against a great Mexican fighter. What other fight is better for me?

Q:  Well, I was just going to ask you, do you believe, and no disrespect what so ever to Juan Manuel Marquez, but do you believe that in the light weight division that Juan Manuel is a better fighter than Nate Campbell who has proven it by winning all those belts and beating a hot young fighter like Juan Diaz?

Joel Casamayor:     I believe it 100%, not only better than Nate Campbell, but on Juan Diaz and a lot of other guys in this weight division and higher.

Q:  Joel, was there motivation coming out of the Santa Cruz fight? And also did you hear that from a lot of people that maybe you weren't in the plan and needed to prove something in that fight against Katsidis that there were people in the business maybe phasing you to the side as an opponent?

Joel Casamayor:     I'm an all time fighter I stand up in big fights. Sometimes I'm not an under card fighter. I hadn't fought in a year and I was a little rusty. I heard all the whispers coming from the outside, but as a fighter you know what you got inside and our heart doesn't lie.  And I know when I lose my vision, I lose it hard, I haven't lost it all. But, I'm a great fighter and great fighters stand up in great fights. And that's why I needed a great fight to stand up. I showed everybody what I had against Katsidis and now I'm going to show everybody that I'm still the best at 37 years old, on September 13.

Q: Juan, how are you feeling right now that you're finishing wrapping up your training for the 135 division, your first fight in that weight? How do you feel with those five extra pounds that you had to gain for this fight?

Juan Manuel Marquez: I'm feeling great, when you prepare yourself the way I prepare myself, you don't feel that weight. I have had exceptional training. I had the right training. I feel great.

Q;  Juan Manuel do you feel like any pressure that you got to win this fight in order to get a rematch with Manny Pacquiao, how do you feel?

Juan Manuel Marquez: No not at all, I'm not thinking about winning this fight to get a rematch with Manny Pacquiao. I'm taking this fight seriously and I'm thinking about Joel Casamayor only. My only concern is to win, to win my next fight September 13 against Joel Casamayor and that's to prove to the people that I'm the best. I'm worried about them making this fight a great fight for the fans. That's what I worry about, I don't worry about Manny Pacquiao.

Q: Everyone keeps talking about which Joel Casamayor is going to show up? Is it the one from the Santa Cruz match or the Katsidis bout?

Joel Casamyor:    Don't worry about that, everyone is going to see that night September 13, we got a surprise for him, he's going to come with his knife in his hand, his knife in his mouth and his fighter in his hands, maybe he's just going to be sharpening up, but when it comes to September 13, your not going to see either. You are going to see the best Casamayor you've ever seen.

Q: This question is for both of you guys. Now, we know the light weight division is probably the hottest division in boxing right now. Where does the winner go after this fight? Looking past the fight on September 13, who does the winner prefer to face?

Joel Casamayor:     I'm looking at as if I have no next opponent. I only got one and that's Marquez, because I know if we don't get Marquez, there is no next fight. So, there's only one Juan Manuel Marquez on my mind, I'm focused for him, I'm going to beat him on September 13, I guarantee that.  And then after that, we can see. I leave it up to my promoters at Golden Boy and I keep letting them move me however they want to. But, I'll tell you one thing, I'd like the chance at Pacquiao. I really like the 140 pound division, if it's not over here, I'll fight him over in England. It's not a big deal, first off while I'm against Juan Manuel Marquez there is no other fight if we can't get past him.

Juan Manuel Marquez: Well, there's nothing else, but September 13. I'm just going to wait for the results with my fight with Joel Casamayor. And obviously I can tell you that maybe I would like to stay in 135, maybe go higher in another division, but I don't know. I need to see how I feel, maybe 135 is too much for me. Maybe I'm going to feel okay, I don't know. The only thing that I can tell you is that there's no more but September 13.

Q:       Joel, how much longer do you plan on fighting? And what do you have left to prove? You proved a lot already. What do you got left?

Joel Casamayor:     Only God knows. I feel great. I still feel young and only God knows that time. I would like to stay around a couple more years, two years, three years, get five big fights in and just retire like all great champions do, winning, I'm a winner.

Q: Joel, when you found out that Oscar De La Hoya was fighting Manny Pacquiao how did you feel at that time? Do you think Manny Pacquiao accepted the fight with Oscar De La Hoya because of the money or because of boxing itself?

Joel Casamayor:     Well maybe it was more money than boxing. And I feel okay, everybody has their chance and now Manny is fighting Oscar De La Hoya. And probably in the future I might fight him again. But, I'm telling you, I am going to prove that I'm better then the kids and everything is fine.

Q:    Are there any worries about Marquez?

Joel Casamayor:  There's nothing to worry about. The only thing you got to do is just do your business, do your business in the ring. I mean, at this stage of my career at 35 years old the only thing you got to do is just get into the ring and mind your own business. I mean you have to fight, that's it.

Juan Manuel Marquez: The winner September 13 is going to be me. I'm not worried about nothing. It comes on September 13, he's going to see what he has to worry about. So, there's not nothing much to talk about. I'm going to win September 13.

Q: Joel, what tactics are you going to have, everyone knows you're soft and slick but can punch and take your opponent out with either hand. So, basically, what are your plans? What does it look like your going to use on Marquez?

Joel Casamayor:     I'm going to go out right handed. I'm going to basically just take it round by round. And I've got a surprise for him in the fight, and take it round by round. Basically I'm going to do what I always do, break people down technically.

Q:   Can you promise a knockout? Everyone is saying you will knock him out.

Joel Casamayor:     No I can't guarantee a knockout. A knockout comes by itself, not just like when a baseball player hits a home run, he's not hitting for the home run, he's just swinging for a nice hit and then he ends up hitting it out of the park. So, basically come September 13, I can say one thing, someone is going to get hit out of the park. It's going to be a war and I just hope that God blesses both of us to come out good, because we both have families. And I'm just not going to let no one take my family's food. But, come September 13 I'm going to be able to leave it all on the line.

Juan Manuel Marquez: Like I always said there's no strategy and there's no strategy to fight any fighter. You're getting into the ring knowing that you're going to fight a great fighter always. And you have to wait to see what he's bringing to the table. And you are trying to figure out what his strategy so you can counter him or do something to calm him down or to - just to calm him down or to win the fight. There is no business strategy, I don't like to do strategies or to plan any strategies. I just work in the gym for an opponent and that's what I do. And just wait to see what happens that night.

Q: Joel, I want to know if you saw the fight that Juan Manuel had with Pacquiao. And if there was something in that fight you saw that let you believe you're going to definitely win this fight?

Joel Casamayor: I'm just so confident because of how well prepared I am. I'm super prepared, not only physically, but mentally. Basically I'm a savvy guy in the ring, I'm not a guy that's out there like a robot, someone's robot or nothing like that. I'm a guy that gets loose in the ring. When I get in there, I invent, I'm the guy that dictates the pace. And basically, I'm very happy to fight Juan Manuel Marquez and I'm going to show everybody who I am.

Q:Can you also comment on the Santa Cruz fight, because before that fight most people expected him to win very easily. While he won the decision there were a lot of different people who had different opinions of it and you didn't look as you looked in other fights. Can you comment on what happened during that fight?

Joel Casamayor:     I'm not interested in that kind of Santa Cruz stuff, everyone knows what happened, I hadn't fought in a year. I'm a better fighter than him and I don't want to talk about any other fighters. Don't ask me about any other fighters except for Juan Manuel Marquez.

Q: Okay. And for Juan Manuel can you tell us in going up to light weight you're facing the light weight champion, which is quite a task. Tell us about what you expect to happen in this fight with somebody on this level when you have your first major fight at this weight?

Juan Manuel Marquez: There's a saying, you don't have risk or you don't take any challenges. I mean it is hard for you to gain something in life and that's what I am doing here. I'm risking, I'm taking a challenge to fight the best, to fight the best in this division, light weight. And I'm going to try it. I'm going to try it. I always said if you want to do something in life, you got to take this kind of a challenge or take a big risk. And September 13 you're going to see it. It's going to pay off, my risk, my challenge and my training; my training is going to pay off. I'm going to come up with a victory.

Q: And is this something that you see in Casamayor's recent fights? You can see this with Santa Cruz that gives him the belief that he is beatable?

Juan Manuel Marquez: Well, I can tell you that he's definitely a great fighter. He's a great counter puncher and I'm a great counter puncher also. I'm going to do my job in the ring and just hope for the best. There's nothing else I can tell you.

Q: Juan Manuel, how does the Casamayor compare with the other opponents you've faced recently?

Juan Manuel Marquez: Difficult, more then my other opponent that I fought. And I know this is a big challenge and he is a most difficult fighter out there.  But fighting and training in the gym makes it a little bit easier for me because I am getting used to it now. I have had many fights in the past so I feel comfortable fighting knowing that it's hard, that it's difficult.

Q: Juan Manuel, you know that Manny Pacquiao made the decision to go off in weight and fight Oscar De La Hoya. What is going to be your decision? Will you stay at 135 pounds or move back down to 130 pounds?

Juan Manuel Marquez: I don't know, I need to see how I feel at 135 pounds. Maybe I'm going to make a decision to stay at 135 pounds or maybe go down to 130 or go into higher division to challenge the best, to fight the best. So, I just want to wait to see on September 13.

Q: Joel, you've been looking for an elite fight for a long time and what does it mean for you to fight one of the Mexican legends of our time?

Joel Casamayor:     I'm very, very happy. I'm like a little kid in a candy shop, I'm very, very happy and I'm honored to be fighting with the great Mexican fighter. I thought it was going to be Barrera, but I got Juan Manuel Marquez, who could be the next Barrera for Mexico. Everyone knows what kind of a fighter he is. And basically everyone knows who I am. So, September 13 is going to be a great day for me, because I've been waiting for this shot my whole life. And I'm going to prove it to the world come September 13.

Q: If you get past Marquez, would you be interested in fighting the winner of Nate Campbell and Joan Guzman to prove that you're the best light weight in the world?

Joel Casamayor: Basically that we have to see, it's up to my promoters. I want the biggest fights possible, and that is Marquez right now. It's just something we got to see in the future and if it's not the right fight for me at that time, than I'm not going to take it. And I want to fight the biggest fights possible. I don't think there's any discussion of who the best light weight in the world is. I'm recognized as the light weight champion of the world and the winner of this fight is going to be the best light weight in the world. And in my eyes will be one of the best pound for pound fighters in the world.


Immediately prior to this fight, there will be another world championship fight featuring the rematch of Vernon Forrest and Sergio Mora for Mora's 154 count world championship. Appearing on this telecast, which again begins at 9:00 p.m. Eastern, 6:00 p.m. Pacific, will feature Baby Face Garcia against Yori Boy Campas. And we just recently announced that an exciting young prospect Victor Ortiz will also be fighting on the show.

Casamayor vs. Marquez, a 12-round bout for Casamayor's World Lightweight Championship, will headline a night of world-class professional boxing.   The world title bout will take place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and will be distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View, beginning at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.