Casamayor to Corrales: "You can't run forever!"

By Socrates Palmer Jr


Casamayor to Corrales: "You can't run forever!"

It is said that a candle flickers brightest right before it burns out. Well in the case of the soon to be 35 year old Joel Casamayor, he has plans to stay burning for a couple more years and in the process be the guiding light in the lightweight division. The former Olympic gold medalist and former two time champion of the world is still hungry and out to prove that he is still one of boxing elite. This Friday night on ESPN 2, he takes one step further on the road to what he hopes is another title reign. Casamayor faces Washington D.C.’s Lamont Pearson in a 10 round lightweight encounter. Casamayor who brings a record of 32-3 will be fighting for the second time in 2006. On February 24th he stopped journeyman Antonio Ramirez in five rounds. On paper this looks like a very even match up. Pearson an efficient boxer brings a solid record of 23-3 with 1 draw. However it will be his first fight since May of 2005. Pearson is also no spring chicken either as he already turned 35 back in February. 

“I feel great my brother, this has been a great training camp. I have been here for the past 6 weeks straight and have been back and forth from Arizona to Miami since January. One things though, It’s hot as hell over here man. This is crazy, it was 115 degrees today. Other than that everything has been fine. I have been able to eat everything that I want my weight is good and I am in good shape”, said Casamayor.

“I am in good spirits my wife recently gave birth to my 5th child, Jesus Luis back in April and I’m happy as can be. My family is the reason I am still fighting and why I have to fight. I also want another world title. I also want to avenge some losses from guys who are staying away from me like the plague. They know who they are. I feel in tremendous shape and I really can’t wait until Friday night,” said Casamayor.

Casamayor insists that he is not looking past Pearson. He feels however that he is looking at the big picture in terms of his career. Casamayor says that you will see a more focused and more aggressive style from him this Friday night. Casamayor thinks that the biggest disparity between him and his aforementioned foe is the class of opposition that the two men have faced. He thinks that Pearson is good and is a little slick but that he has never faced an opponent like he will see on Friday night. The never at a lost for words Cuban star says that he is confident that with his anticipated victory, that he should be in lined for a world title challenge.

“Pearson is a good fighter and I respect him for fighting me. I mean no one else wants to fight me. Everyone has ducked me. I respect him for the time being and I know that he is coming to fight and coming to win, however he will lose. He is fighting the best fighter in the world Joel “El Cepillo” Casamayor and that’s that”, said Casamayor.

This bout will take place at the Celebrity Theatre in Phoenix, Arizona. This will be the first time for Casamayor fighting in Arizona. New seems to be the theme for Casamayor these days as he will debut an old new corner. Roger Bloodworth is currently the man who is coaching Casamayor. Bloodworth and Casamayor are no strangers to each other they worked together for the first 15 bouts of Casamayor’s pro career.

“Roger and I worked together at the begging of my career and we have always remained cool. He was my trainer as a pro when I was with Main Events. My first fight out of Cuba was with him. He is a good trainer and we have good chemistry. Its better now because his Spanish is better now also and I am more mature as a fighter as well,” said Casamayor.

Blooodworth has worked with 20 former world champions throughout his respected career. He is also currently training world ranked junior light weight and former belt holder, Mighty” Mike Anchondo.

The philosophy at Team Freedom is while others see Casamayor as an aging fighter; they see him as a veteran who has low miles. In their eyes their man is a young fighter in regards to the punishment that he has endured inside of the ring. Long time Casamayor advisor, Louie De Cubas believes that his fighter’s style and defensive prowess has granted him longevity compared to his contemporaries. He feels that the number of clean hard punches and the number of wars determine how much a fighter has left in his career, not necessarily his date of birth. He points out that Casamayor is 35 and he has 36 professional fights.

“We will fight anyone from 130 to 140 pounds. There was a fight offered to us by HBO to fight Joan Guzman but the money made no sense. We would have made less money than when we fought Diamond, when Joel was robbed and they gave him a draw. I’d love a fight against WBO Super Featherweight champion Jorge Barrios if possible. The man that Joel wants is Corrales. The bottom line is this we gave Diego Corrales a rematch after we stopped him. Joel stopped him and he (Corrales) was supposed to be the puncher,” stated De Cubas.

The crafty Cuban plans on calling out long time rival and expected studio analyst Diego “Chico” Corrales tonight after his bout with Pearson. Corrales and Casamayor fought twice, with both men claiming victories. Casamayor wants the rubber match and feels that the current WBC world champion, Corrales is avoiding him at all cost.

“Look this guy’s feet must hurt from running so much. He has no excuses not to fight me. His fight with Castillo fell through and now he wants a big opponent, what about me? I’ll tell you why because he knows what will happen if he fights me again. I’m ready whenever he wants do this. I gave him a rematch after I beat him and now he is scared to give me my rematch,” stated Casamayor.

“I will look into the camera on Friday night and I know that you will be there in studio and I want you to be a man and step up and say yes to a third fight. If you are the best at 135 then prove it. Stop ducking me. I never ducked anyone and I never will,” said Casamayor.

Casamayor expressed that he has no problems making the 135-pound division and feels comfortable at lightweight. If a title fight does not materialize within a reasonable time that he is willing to make the jump to the junior welterweight division in pursuit of that elusive 3rd world title. Casamayor expressed that he would love a potential super fight against a couple of the more notable 140 pounders, Ricky Hatton or Miguel Cotto.

Whether you are a fan or not of “El Cepillo” no fighter with three losses on their resume can make a more legitimate claim or gripe to being undefeated as Casamayor can. His only losses to date have come at the hands of former or current world champions. He lost a disputed unanimous decision to Brazilian, Acelino Frietas back in January 2001. Then in 2004 he fought for the same WBO title vacated by Frietas in his second bout with Corrales and lost a split decision. Corrales was dropped in 10th round of this contest. Then later in December of 2004 Casamayor attempted to wrest the WBC version of the lightweight crown from Jose Luis Castillo to only drop a very disputable split decision.

“I’ll fight anyone at anytime and in any place in the world. Look at my career I have fought everyone in my era that has been on top. I took the Castillo fight in 3 weeks. Corrales is running scarred of me. Show me the money. Show me the money and we can make it happen,” said Casamayor.

“To all my fans hello and get ready for another world title. Tune in on Friday and you will see the first step in this mission. I won Olympic gold for you and I have never let you down and I never will”, said Casamayor. 


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