Exclusive Interview: Jeff Mayweather

By Brad Cooney


Exclusive Interview: Jeff Mayweather

Boxingtalk.com hooked up with boxing trainer Jeff Mayweather (Floyd Mayweather Jr's Uncle), and discussed the recent news of his joining the Shannon Briggs camp. Jeff also gives us an in depth perspective of the Floyd Mayweather vs Zab Judah fight, and his thoughts on the the brawl that took place in the 10th round.

BT - Jeff first off, let's talk about Shannon Briggs. How did you end up joining the Briggs camp?

JM - Well I heard from another writer that Scott Hirsch was trying to get in touch with me. He said that Hirsch had heard about me, and that they were impressed with me, so I told him to give him my number. About 10 minutes later, Scott called me and we talked for about a half an hour, and he told me that he was Shannon Briggs manager. Scott told me that he had heard a lot of great things about me, and I was like'How did he hear about me, I don't toot my own horn'? Scott asked me if I would be interested in training and working with Shannon Briggs, and I said that I would be honored to. Shortly after that conversation, Shannon and I spoke, and we hit it off. Shannon and I have the same type of personality, we got a long real well.

BT - Jeff great fighters don't have to toot their own horns, their actions speak louder than words.

JM - Yes, I guess that's true, I guess that's how he heard of me.

BT - Tell me about Shannon Briggs, what's your assessment of him so far?

JM - Well I think Shannon is prepared to be the Heavyweight Champion of The World. When I first came here I was shocked. I know of Shannon in the past. If Shannon didn't get you early you had a chance, but what I see now compared of old? Big difference. He was already adding a lot to his workout before I got here. I compared him to some guys that I have worked with ,and I was like 'wow' this guy is really working hard. When I saw this it made me feel even better because I knew I was coming into a good situation.

BT - I am guessing that means a lot to a trainer, when the fighter really wants it bad.

JM - A lot of young fighters are a little selfish. Shannon Brigg's is a focused fighter now, and we talk about a lot of things. We talk about his career, and this guy is really appreciative of this chance to still be here, and to be able to fight at this level. Shannon never really gave himself a real chance, and a lot of the guys that started when Shannon Briggs started are no longer here. Someone has been watching out for Shannon, he's a guy that has always had talent, but the difference now is how bad he wants it.

BT - Jeff talk about Floyd's fight against Zab Judah.

JM - Floyd basically took over after those first few rounds. Floyd showed why he's the best fighter lb for lb in the world.

BT - Jeff in your opinion, was the low blow that Zab threw intentional?

JM - It was intentional, lately Zab's actions have been more like a Mike Tyson. Once Zab see's himself in a bad situation he takes it to the extreme. It's one thing to throw a low blow, but then to hit Floyd in the back of the head? What would have happened if he Paralyzed Floyd with that punch, and ended his career? You can kill a person with a punch like that.

BT - Roger Mayweather got slammed real good with his fine, I think what's ironic here is how much of a gentleman and a class act Floyd was throughout the whole ordeal.

JM - Well Floyd is at the age where he understands that he needs to make the best of himself. Early in his career he may not have been ready to embrace that. Floyd Mayweather now is the exact same Floyd Mayweather that I was trying to put out there 7 years ago. I am really glad to see that Floyd has matured the way he has.

BT - Ricky Hatton and Antonio Margarito are two names being tossed around as possible next opponents for Floyd, how do you see those two guys matching up against him?

JM - Well I think Ricky Hatton and Mayweather match up better. Margarito everyone thinks will present a problem, but I think he's too slow. Floyd would break his long body down. I just don't see a guy like Margarito catching Floyd, he's too slow.

BT - Floyd is starting to be compared with some of the greatest fighters of all time, and he's not even close to being finished yet.

JM - Yes it's possible he will be one of the greatest. I remember when he was just a little bitty kid, before the olympics, early in the amateur days. We said that one day he would be one of the greatest fighters of all time. Me and my brother Roger would always toot his horn, at that time we didn't know that were actually watching a prodigy at work. What Floyd is doing now in the ring he was able to do when he was 7 yrs old. That's why it's so second nature to him now.

BT - Great champions make adjustments in fights, were you guys surprised with how well Zab did early in the fight?

JM - Honestly, not really. One thing Zab brings to the dance is speed. Zab isn't a devastating puncher, he's got some power, but not devastating. I know that Floyd is a great defensive fighter, and that's part of being a great fighter, to make adjustments. All great fighters eventually run into a wall, when you're looking for greatness you eventually run into a wall, one day it may happen to Floyd too.


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