Daniel Judah: Zab’s passing the torch to me!

By. Ray O. Campbell Jr


Daniel Judah: Zab’s passing the torch to me!

Winky Promotions inks Daniel Judah

Cruiserweight contender Daniel Judah 21-2-3(10), recently checked in with Boxingtalk this past week. Judah, 29, informed us he signed an exclusive promotional deal with former undisputed Jr. Middleweight champion Winky Wright’s promotional company, Winky Promotions. In this lengthy one on one, Daniel, discusses with us topics ranging from his recent controversial loss to Darnell Wilson, his disapproval of his younger brother Zab Judah facing Floyd Mayweather this past April and much much more

RC: What’s going on Daniel?
DJ: There has been a lot of **Explicit** going down. Lots of up and downs, it is crazy.

RC: All right, Daniel let’s start with your last fight… you lost by TKO in four to Darnell Wilson….
DJ: (cutting in) First of all Ray, I don’t mean to butt in and cut you off but I didn’t lose a by no TKO. They did that to hype the boy up; my arm came out during the fight. I will give you the tape. I am going to clear it all up. I have nothing against the dude, he is as good-hearted person but what Baltimore did they went and they got the game twisted they went and they put TKO like he TKO’ed me.

RC: But if you can’t continue that’s …
DJ: (Cutting in) But he didn’t hit me, it was an accident on my behalf so there for it should be considered a no-contest. I got the DVD I can show you, he didn’t hit me in my shoulder. I through the punch and being that I threw it kind of awkward and I missed and my arm jerked back, it came out and I was in too much pain to continue. I was trying to tell the officials the situation so that they could change it, and I was leading on all the judges’ scorecards.

RC: I would imagine that you would like an opportunity to avenge that blemish, correct?
DJ: Of course without a doubt but I don’t want to fight him in Baltimore. They made me go to his hometown and I put on a good fight up until my arm came out. If we fight again we can fight in Connecticut, we can fight in New York we can fight anywhere else other than Baltimore. If not it is cool, they are much bigger names out there, I am not worried about Darnell Wilson.

RC: From what I understand that fight took place on a Winky Wright promoted/co promoted card, and it is to my understanding that you are now a part of his promotional stable. What can you tell us about that like when and how did it all come about?
DJ: Winky is a good dude and when I found out that he would be promoting and signing fighters. It came to me after I got released from Warriors (Boxing) it was like what was I going to do. I was a free agent for a couple of months and to be honest with you, my team wasn’t focused on me. Everyone was focused on Zab, and Zab was going to fight Baldomir and Zab was going to fight Floyd. Being that he lost to Baldomir I told my brother Zab not to fight Floyd because he shouldn’t have fought two hard fights back to back. But I guess he must have seen the money and Don (King) kept telling him to take the fight and I am not going to blame Don because Don wasn’t the one that got in the ring. And I thought that was a bad idea, I told my father that, and I told Zab that,

RC: So other than Zab coming off a difficult fight against Baldomir was their any other reason of your disapproval? And what was their reaction to you disagreeing?
DJ: My reason not to take the Floyd fight was because he lost already to Baldomir. So therefore he should have sat out for a minute, think about what the next move is going to be and take a tune up fight. You don’t go and take another hard fight, that was crazy and uncalled for, I don’t care what Zab said, Floyd was a hard fighter to fight because you have to be physically and mentally ready for this guy. He is a good fighter I take nothing from him and to me Zab wasn’t ready for that even though he is good, and look so good those first four rounds. But I knew that later on in the fight that the endurance and everything else was going to kick in and if Zab wasn’t on his level with the endurance and the conditioning. He wasn’t going to win the fight.

RC: So what was there reaction when you told them you didn’t think Zab should take the fight?
DJ: At first my father was like “No”, Zab was like “Yes”, then my father kept getting all these calls about fighting Floyd. I told Zab who is my younger brother… Yo son, Zab you don’t need that dude right now. What you need to do is redeem yourself. The fight would have still happened because the people would have demanded to see Zab and Floyd fight, you why because he would have came back with a bang, he would have fought a tune up against Miguel Cotto or somebody …..

RC: (Cutting in) Miguel Cotto may not be pound for pound right now but he is no tune up brother.
DJ: From what I see and I am a fighter, from what I see he is a tune up. I am not calling him a bum but he is like a step… Floyd is a ahead of Miguel Cotto

RC: (cutting in) By far, but Floyd is also ahead of the rest of the Boxing world in terms of
DJ:  (cutting in) yeah in his own mind.

RC: Daniel, Floyd is that dude right now period... I am not saying he is going to go in there and beat De La Hoya but right now Floyd is on top of his game, Period!
DJ: I will give it to him, he is doing what he has to do, the boy is getting paid and that is that’s. But getting back to me, everyone was focused Zab fighting Baldomir and Zab fighting Floyd after he loss both of those fights, the whole Judah camp like we just got, like when the Twin Towers came down it is like that’s what happened with us because when we loss, we lost hard. I say we because Zab represents me, my father represents me and I represent them and my last name is Judah. So when he lost that fight it was like everything came crumbling down. So when you have two twin towers which is me and Zab in front of the team, you know if one falls that doesn’t mean that the other one has to go with it. That means that you work with the other one and you keep doing what you do with the other one.

RC: So what you are trying to say is that you were put on the backburner in other words
DJ: Exactly! That is why I signed with Winky. It’s like this I am a grown man, I am 29 years old.

RC: (Cutting in) Are you still working with your Dad in any capacity right now?
DJ: Yeah my dad is … you know what it is man, everybody think that but I am still with my pops even though he only found out a couple of weeks ago that I signed with Winky.

RC: So prior to that he had no idea you signed with Winky??
DJ: No at least not from me, he just found out from me that I signed with Winky he might have known but not from me.

RC: Now your dad has always handled both you and Zab’s day to day business activities, and I know he was the one that put everything together with Warriors Boxing for you. How did he feel about you not letting him know you signed with Winky, and him not participating in any of it?
DJ: He just told me “Daniel you are a grown man, you got a family” and basically he said that if I wanted to do a deal I should have came to him, but he realized that I did it in my best interest, which I did and that’s that. Then he said “ I am behind you 100% and we are going to keep the ball rolling” So I am with Winky, but I am still with my Pops and I would never leave my Pops, I love my Pops to death, he is the one that got me to this point. Its just Winky and I, we have a good connection.
RC:  Who will you be training with from now on?
DJ: I will be training with (Slight Pause).. I will be training with… I mean whoever my father might wants me to train with. My father has me, and John Arthur (James Toney assistant trainer/advisor) in California has me to, I have those two guys and I have Winky also. Winky is the guy that picks and puts the fights together, I talked to my father and I spoke to John Arthur about the fights and we go from there. John co-manages me now along with my father.

RC: Ok, back to your fight, you popped out your shoulder in the fight, what’s the status with it now and when can we expect to see you back in action?
DJ: It was out for about five minutes and it went back in the same night. It kept troubling me I went back to NY I took an X-Ray but they really could not see anything with that so they have to do an MRI on my shoulder which will be done next week. Once they do that they will determine if I need surgery or if I need to go get treatment or whatever.

I spoke to Winky a couple of days ago and everyone is just waiting for me to get my shoulder taken care of because there are a lot of big fights out there. You got Bernard Hopkins… I am calling everybody out; you got Tarver you got Roy Jones. It is like this, to get to where you got to go you have to beat somebody with a name. You got to beat somebody to be somebody.

RC: Often times a lot of up and comers such as yourself call out guys like Hopkins, who clearly are looking at only taking fights that will just add to his already long list of accomplishments. Those guys are clearly looking at bigger…
DJ: (Cutting in) Wait wait wait, hold on Boxingtalk, hold on Ray let me tell you something. Bernard never said my name in any interviews when he fought Tarver, and it is all good because it is no secret and his trainer knows that when I was sparring Bernard I gave him the business, put it like that.

RC: Really?
DJ: I don’t care when you put it out there or how you put it out there, and who don’t like me or whatever, I don’t care man I gave Bernard the business and that’s that.

RC: So you’re saying that….
DJ: (Cutting in) They were three sparring partners. It was me, Richard Hall and there was this other old dude but I can’t remember his name. He was like a big man; Bernard would call him “Big Man” and Richard Hall “ Richard Hall and me he use to call me “Young Lion” Why? Because every day I gave him the business, everyday we went at it.

RC: Now lets clear this up… so when you say you were giving him the business do you mean it was competitive sparring because to me the business means that you flat out put hands on him, which means….
DJ: (Cutting in) It was competitive man, there was no him beating me up, it was very competitive put it like that I am not going to say that I am better than him or that I got the better sparring against him. Let me tell you something when people get around different people they tend to people they tend to blend in, he blends in with Oscar now, he has got the money so now there is nothing for him but the big fights. But he forgets he was hungry just like me starving.

I went to training camp with him, I stopped sparring with my man Eric Harding who was preparing for Chad Dawson, I stopped sparring with him and they called me to New Orleans and said “Daniel, we want you to come and train with Bernard” I said ok ay cool, not a problem, but under one condition that if I do good, they (Golden Boy) will have to sign me. So they never lived up to their word because they knew who was doing what. I am just keeping it real. He was at a point where I am at right now. He was there before, he was hungry and he would have fought anybody. Just like me,  I don’t care. I will take anybody on from 190lbs on up.

RC: Does that mean you will even consider fighting at Heavyweight?
JD: Yeah, I will take a fight at Heavyweight

RC: The highest you have been for a fight was 193lbs, and you have fought the majority of your career at 175lbs. How do you feel you will do against the bigger guys up at heavyweight?
JD: Put it like this, my last fought was a good match. My uncle Jimmy he does my conditioning and I thank him because of him I was in terrific condition, for Heavyweight I will have to bulk up and all of that but that is why I have my conditioning coach for. I am not afraid of any heavyweight. Everyday I am getting bigger I am walking around at about 205-210lbs. Like I said I would take anybody from 190lbs on up. I don’t care who they put in the ring with me. I showed my skills, I showed that there is another Judah that hasn’t been recognized. There is one that they haven’t seen on top of his game right now. I am looking at those big fights down the line, those guys are big but I am going to knock them off though. I am not talking trash, this is reality, this is what’s going to happen, I am just letting the people know out there that we are back and going to be a force to be reckoned with. Zab held the torch but now he is passing it to me, I am carrying the torch. I am not going to front, Zab opened the doors for us but now I am coming in. I got my other brother Josiah (7-0-1(1)) he is going to do what he has been doing he is going to keep winning, he is undefeated and I got my other brother Joseph (Amateur) that is wicked.

So Winky is helping me out and I am going to go for it man. And them guys that I said anything about, I really don’t care man, I really don’t care because it is what it is and when I say it is what it is, I mean that whatever I said if you take it to heart then hey you take it to heart and that’s your problem, I don’t care. I am from the streets, I am from Brooklyn and straight up and down that is how I get down. You haven’t heard from me in over a year on Boxingtalk, but now this is the realest Danny Boy Judah right here.

I got a great team behind me 2007 is my year. I am going to continue to train hard and do what I have to do, I am going to do business with the hands from now on. 

RC: I have been hearing rumors around Brooklyn that you were recently incarcerated, do you care to comment on that?
DJ: I was at the wrong place at the wrong time, an incident went down, I happened to be in a car and I was incarcerated for about five-six weeks. I still have to go to court for it but everything looks good in my favor. Stuff like that doesn’t tend to happen to me because I am not a jail kinda dude but I think that was a wakeup call. I think the Lord is telling me to get on my grind stay focused and keep away from knuckle heads. It actually helped me out more, because I am more motivated right now I am working, and I am in gym working hard and I am around my family more. When I was locked up I promised myself when I get out I am going to stay focused on life and work on becoming a world champion.


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