Exclusive Interview: Evander Holyfield Part II

By G. Leon


Exclusive Interview: Evander Holyfield Part II

GL: Have you seen Sam on tape and if so what do you think about him as a fighter? "The majority of the heavyweights today are ordinary fighters. They're basic jab, 1-2, 1-2-3 type fighters. Other than that they aren't very skillful. Their whole thing is, if I get a big punch on you, you could do. They're just thinking about hitting you and getting you out there."

GL: Was is satisfying to learn that guys like Jeremy Bates still have no business being in the ring with you?

EH: "I didn't look at it like that. I looked at it like, can I go out here knowing what type of fighter I used to be, do I still have those skills? The man has skills but the point is can he pull it off anymore. We knew what he used to do but in sports it's not what you used to do it's what you do now. Jeremy Bates was young and they figured the only way he could beat Evander is if Evander's old but if Evander does what he used to do he will beat this guy. But if Evander does what he used to do he will be heavyweight champion of the world because can't nobody match how he used to be. That's just common sense to people who have seen me do it. The point of the matter is can he do it now? Is he equipped to do it now?"

GL: Is he? You tell us?

EH: "Of course. boxing is not talk, boxing is prove it. Sports is like the game of life, prove it. Here I am, I was able to prove to the people that I was better than him, not because I was stronger because I had the hand speed and threw more combinations. I did what I had to do and if I didn't it would have been Evander got beat by the insurance guy. These other fights is the same thing, it's not like I don't have the capability to do it, I know I do. I had to work on the things to put me in the position to be the very best. It just takes time, I had to work myself in this thing properly to make noise and let people know that a guy my age wouldn't be doing it if he couldn't do it. It's not about ego, I've never met an older guy who likes to lose. In fact we don't do things we lose it and we don't want to lose. That's the point of being older, you've been living long enough to choose and you don't live as long as me making foolish choices."

GL: There's a pretty big fight on Saturday with James Toney and Samuel Peter, who do you like in that fight?

EH: "From the get go I would think Samuel Peter is going to win. I would say with the skills that James Toney has, which he has a truck load of them, but with his stature I just don't see fighting Peter benefit him in any kind of way because he swings down. You can't slip his punches if you're short. This is the reason Frazier got knocked out with George. He bobbed down, but George punched down. He'd hit you right in the back of the head if you duck your head that way. It's hard to slip a person who punches down, they hit you with their arm, wrist and everything. James Toney slips a lot but this guy don't throw straight punches. I think that with his size and his weight and he puts all that weight on that boy's back it's going to be kind of tiring too. And James Toney doesn't hit hard enough to drop the boy. Of course he does stand a chance if he gets by the early rounds, but I think this guy is going to do everything he can to get him out in the first few rounds."

GL: Is there anything you'd like to say in closing?

EH: "Buy PPV on November 11 because it's going to be a fight you don't want to miss."


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