Exclusive: Roy Jones Jr speaks out, the transcript!

Transcribed by Michael Doss


Exclusive: Roy Jones Jr speaks out, the transcript!

Media: Why do you want to continue when you have already accomplished so much? RJJR:  It’s like basketball to an extent. All teams go up and down, the Lakers were on top for a long time and then down for a long time, they have to re-build back up. The Boston Celtics were good for a long time then went downhill and they had to re-build, in boxing when fighters go all the way to the top and drop down sometimes they have to do the same. Lennox Lewis, Oscar Delahoya, Bernard Hopkins and James Toney all had to re-build, a lot of people never thought that I would get a chance to re-build but I will get my time, the easiest way is to just get out, that would be easy because I already have enough accomplished and I could get out and be cool.

Media: So, you are just doing this to still prove something to yourself?

RJJR:  Just to myself, no one other than myself. After I prove it to myself then I’m good, when I get tired I’m done but really, honestly one more fight that I want to have again is Glen Johnson, I’m not going to lie to you.

Media: Glen is the mandatory for a title so if he should win.

RJJR: (Breaks In) I just want to fight Glen, I don’t know what it is but I want him. Bernard didn’t beat me, Glen beat me and he wasn’t supposed to beat me, no way in hell Glen was supposed to beat me, so I want him one more time. When your time comes, it isn’t any sense to cry about it, your time is here. When I was on top, I was happy right, but there is no sense to be sad when my time comes, every dog is going to have its day your time will come. When your day comes it’s how you handle your time, I’m not complaining or making excuses I just want to fight him again.

Media: Will your dad be with you in the corner for Ajamu?


Media: Has the last two years been difficult since you were on such a high pinnacle?

RJJR: Of course it is going to difficult, but it’s like I always tell people, “If you are a athlete, you have to get both sides of this game, it’s an ugly game.” One side looks good, but that other side, if you other there on the good side there is a lot of other people on the bad side and your time will come, you going to have to face the other side. Even if you quit, there will be something else happen to you and will have to face the other side, no sense of running from it, you either in there or out of there. With me, in the first fight with Glen Johnson I told someone before the fight “Don’t be surprised if I go down again” why, they said, because it is getting to be too easy and I have to pay back something so if I go down again it wouldn’t surprise me and that’s what happened.

I have not-never prepared for a fight, I am always going to prepare myself, not one time I wasn’t prepared, sometimes I have prepared the wrong way for a fight, like the fight before I didn’t do what I should have done because I took the left side and not the right side but should had taken the right side and not the left side but I prepared for the left side but the guy was going to the right side, so it messed me up. I wasn’t listening to myself, I was listening to my coach and that wasn’t me, we looked at it and I needed to go to the right side

I know Glen couldn’t beat me, but when it is your time it’s your time, we don’t control this, all you do is the best that you can. Never do I not prepare or not be ready but when your time comes its going to come.

Media: Why did you fight Glen then and if you fought him earlier in your career would it had been different?

RJJR: Yeah, that probably would had been the case, not going that far in weight yet and coming down, yeah it would had been different.

Media: How long did it take your body to get adjusted to 175 from heavyweight?

RJJR: A long time, probably about a year and a half.

Media: What kind of things did you feel?

RJJR: I really don’t even want to get into it right now because it really was a strange situation, honestly speaking but when I went into the fight with Ruiz I knew it was a sacrifice that could possibly hurt me for the rest of my career but god gave me a opportunity to be heavyweight champ of the world, and if I always said that if I got a chance I would do it and I did.

Media: What are you walking around at right now Roy?

RJJR: About 185 and that is where I want to be at.

Media: 185?

RJJR: Yeah, that is what I used to walk around at and now I am at the point that I can walk around that again and it is good for me. Even in the Glen Johnson fight, after the fight I was dehydrated, it didn’t just happen in that fight, it has been going on for a period of time for losing all that weight.
When the doctor told me that I was dehydrated I knew that is what my problem was, my body hadn’t adjusted yet and I knew it, I was walking around with my mouth dry for no reason because I was dehydrated as hell for coming back down in weight.
My body wasn’t adjusted and it took a long time.

Media: After the first Tarver fight why didn’t you just take a year off?

RJJR:  Listened to people.

Media: What people?

RJJR: You know, like y’all “Laughs” and everybody else. People say that he gave me a hard time and I was running from him, I am not running from nothing and if they wanted to see it again Ill do it again.

Media: Can you talk about how you came up to fight Prince Badi Ajamu?

RJJR:  This promoter came and told me that he wanted me on a card with Holyfield and Virgil Hill, I told him that I really didn’t want to be bothered right now and he told me that I could be the main event. Then it started to be a little more interesting, I asked him who I would fight and he said this guy and I took it.

Media: After describing the weight loss as something that shocked your body do you wish that you would have made the Holyfield fight before.

RJJR: (Cuts In) Now, I tried to make that Holyfield fight, I did try to make that fight that was not my fault. If Holyfield don’t like his side of the deal I cannot make him go in there and fight, if he didn’t like his side of the deal then it couldn’t happen. If I want to fight this man and him and his promoter not set on the fight then he’s not going to fight, so, that’s not my fault, I tried to make that fight happen.

Media: Roy, what lessons did you learn seeing the way that Muhammed Ali, Joe Louis and Sugar Ray Robinson finished their careers?

RJJR: Once you realize that it’s not there anymore stop and walk away, don’t try to make something out of something that isn’t. Like I said, when you look at the Tarver fight last time, I did feel like that night I was running away from it, but I don’t feel it was because of my self and my age. I felt like it was what was going on up here with me and I had a chance to stop and get one more fight in and get the stuff out of the way, then do it, If I told you all that I had on me you wouldn’t even believe it but I’m not here to tell you that, that’s all in the past now and now I can move on. After watching these guys, a lot of them went on until they could do nothing no more. If I start getting like that I will stop, it’s not hard to see, but it’s like the last performance that I had. It wasn’t like I was ran over or so out done, I’m like “That’s not a problem” if you get all of this mental stuff off of you now lets see where we are at now.

Media: Roy, you lost three fights in a row, but not just that, those two fights were just so hard of knockouts.

RJJR: Yeah, they were.

Media: Does it just make you pause and think twice about things.

RJJR: (Cuts In) It does give you pause and think about things but at the same time when you pause and think about it and if you paused all of your life and thought about it you wouldn’t be where you are now.

Media: In the 5th round of the third fight against Tarver you looked like the young RJ.
What happened after that?

RJJR: Well, you want to know the truth, the whole truth? You might get mad at me if I tell you the truth, but I’m going to tell you the truth. If I go out there and knock him off, who gets the glory?

Media: Are you saying that your father would?

RJJR: That is the only person they would say that the reason for that happening, everybody would had given glory to Roy Jones Senior, no glory you have went to god or myself, so would that had been right?

Media: Isn’t that better than losing?

RJJR: It was but that wasn’t my choice at the time, I didn’t see that until after it happened.

Media: You’re really thinking that if you would have knocked him out that your father gets the glory?

RJJR: At that time, I felt that if I would have won the fight in any way that my dad would have gotten all the glory.

Media: What would have been wrong with that and why did you bring him back?

RJJR:  Like I said, I didn’t realize any of this until after it happened. You don’t know until it is over with. You have to look at the whole picture. Some things happen, that let you know where the problem comes from. Even in the corner, I had to see him tell his assistant guy to come over there and push Alton Merkerson out of the way, you don’t know this but I’m dealing with it.

Media: Was it not established prior to the fight which person was going to talk in the corner?

RJJR: It was prior to the fight but it changed.
But he pushed Merkerson out of the way and brought in his assistant and he wont even talk and I can’t hear “Merk” say nothing.
And I’m seeing it all while I’m trying to deal with this in the ring.

Media: Before the camp started and you were working at one gym with your dad and one gym with Merkerson, couldn’t you see the conflict then?

RJJR: No, because “Merk” agreed and said that Dad could talk first and he would talk second. That is what they agreed, but somebody didn’t stick with his side of the agreement.

Media: You’re saying that you had to look at the outcome of the fight based on who got the glory and that is your father. That is a pretty deep statement. 

RJJR:  Yeah, it is a pretty deep statement, but I believe that my father does not deserve that when all along he was not involved, doing what he was doing and then step in and take all the credit.
Where was he for the last eight, nine years?

Media: So, how come did you bring him back?

RJJR: Because he is sharp, if he sticks to the plan he is good but god no, he is not going to stick to the plan.

Media: Are you guys still talking to each other?

RJJR: A little bit, I’m not mad at the guy.

Media: You going to get him a father’s day gift?

RJJR: I might do that. You have to understand, after everything passed by, then you see the whole picture, see, I can’t see the whole picture.

Media: Did he offer any advice on if you should take this fight?

RJJR: No, the only advice he ever gave me was not to fight John Ruiz and Buster Douglas.
Having him was good, but more bad than good and he is the smartest dude as far as boxing goes that I know, don’t get me wrong. Isn’t nobody that could teach me what he taught me, but at the same time there are things that come with it like the situation with “Merk” in the corner and I have to sit in the corner and deal with this and I’m fighting, people worried about me, feeling bad for me and I’m worried and feeling bad for “Merk” you understand. You can’t do everything at one time and that was not the original plan, the original plan was, you talk first then “Merk” say what he has to say.

Media: Was your dad sending conflicting messages to you in the corner?

RJJR: No, no the conflicting message was he tried to get “Merk” out of the corner, what are you doing?
This other guy, I know him too, that is your assistant, I didn’t ask you to have him up here with me, he is supposed to be back there putting the bucket in the corner and the stool, why did you tell him to come up to the ring?

Media: That seems to happen a lot with fathers and sons take Floyd Senior and Floyd Junior for instance.

RJJR: I called that before it happened. When Floyd first started he called me and I explained it to him how it is. The bad thing about it is, don’t think that Floyd senior is not serious, because he is dead serious.

Media: Serious about what?

RJJR: About showing Oscar how to beat Floyd Junior, but Oscar won’t beat Floyd because Floyd Junior is too motivated by that, so Oscar doesn’t got no chance, trust what I tell you.

Media: Do you think that your father would train another fighter to beat you?

RJJR: Yeah, he was training William Guthrie when Guthrie was on his way, don’t you understand, this hasn’t just started.

Media: But it never actually took place.

RJJR: But if it would have happened, he would have done it. Y’all have got to understand what I know, this hasn’t just started with me, I’ve been going through this since I was a little boy, understand me, you don’t know what happens when that door closes, you don’t understand, you don’t know like I know, that this man would treat him better than he would treat me, and I am his own son and he is a white man, kind of deep isn’t it?

Media: Yes, it is.

RJJR: Alright then, so you have to wake up and see what is going on. When I tell y’all that I had a lot going on, you couldn’t imagine how much I actually had going on.

Media: After your upcoming fight with Ajamu, do you have a timetable on when you would want a second Glen Johnson fight?

RJJR: Well, the fight is July 29th, in September I will be fighting Glen.
I hope he has a title by then.

Media: He has the mandatory for Clinton Woods.

RJJR: Well I will probably fight someone else in September then.

Media: What do you think of Tarver now?

RJJR: Same thing I thought about him before, I don’t have to tell you what I think, look at him.

Media: Do you think that it is ironic that Tarver started the “No excuses” talk about the weight and now he has to stay silent?

RJJR: You talked yourself into it, good, now you cannot say a word so now just shut up and take it.

Media: Earlier you mentioned that Mayweather would beat Delahoya, can you compare Floyd as pound for pound the best fighter in the world to when you were? How do you compare your skills?

RJJR: Right now he is the best fighter in the world, right were I was and you can’t take that away from him, he is certainly the best out there right now.

Media: Is he as dynamic now as you were back then?

RJJR: I am not going to make that call (Laughs). But he will beat Oscar, he is too motivated, he will not lose that, if my dad would have trained Guthrie for me he would have got him killed, if he trained Tarver he would have got him killed, anybody my dad would have trained against me would been killed.
Same reason why Floyd will beat Oscar, take it from somebody that know, who isn’t afraid to tell it like it is. Oscar will never beat Floyd in a hundred years, if Floyd had to run a hundred miles every day to make sure he beat Oscar that is what he will do. Just because his dad, and this has nothing to do with Oscar, he is a wonderful fighter but he don’t have a chance, he won’t even be the topic of discussion during the fight, he is just like this water I have here, that’s all he is going to be.
The boy is going to see him and I’m telling you, watch, I’m just telling you the truth, trust me.

Media: Who is going to win tonight with Taylor and Wright?

RJJR: Now that is a totally different situation, in Jermain’s situation he still has to grow up a little, he still looked a little amateurish against Hopkins, but I think he may have fixed that and if he fixed that and has the patience to beat Winky then he could beat him. He is a bigger guy, he should be busier than Winky and if he does not let Winky start off with his jab he could win, but if Winky starts with the jab Taylor won’t catch up.

Media: Do you miss commentating?

RJJR: I miss not telling the world what is going on to where they can understand it, but it’s like HBO was confused because they wanted me to tell them who the guy was married to last year, what prison he got out of before he came here and that’s not my job. My job is to strictly tell you what is going on, when round one starts I can tell you exactly what the hell happens, why he is winning or not winning, what he needs to do to win, and what he needs to do to not lose. That is what I understood my job to be, they starting saying that I need to come in on Thursday, you need to do this and do that, I don’t mind coming in on Friday, that was my initial feeling but I cannot come on Thursday because I don’t care where the guy came from, how long he has been in the country, how long he is going to be in the country, how many people he brought with him, how many girlfriends he had, how many wife’s he had before he got married to his new wife, why he divorced his ex-wife, why him and his dad don’t get along. I don’t need to know all of that and that is what I felt that they were trying to make me do, if you want me to come and do research, hell, he is fighting, that is all I need to know, who is he fighting because when they come out here, I’m going to show you what is going on, what he need to do to win and not lose and that is all I came here to talk about, that is what I thought I was getting paid for.

Media: Roy, can you talk about what happened with the rematch with Hopkins before he went to fight Tarver because Bernard told me that you guys made a deal.

RJJR: This is boxing dude, don’t you understand that? This is boxing, in boxing, today you talk to one guy and reach a deal but before you go to bed tonight there is no deal on paper because you read on the internet that there isn’t a deal.

Media: You and Bernard had a agreement though, right?

RJJR: Yes, next thing I hear is that I better do something because Hopkins and Tarver are about to make a fight, I thought we had a deal, if he want’s to fight Tarver well let him go.
He said he was cool with it, I said I was cool with it, we agreed on 50/50.

Media: Will you ever fight on HBO again?

RJJR: I don’t know, I don’t get into all of that, my job is to do what I got to do right now.
I don’t have no hate for nobody, I don’t even hate my own daddy, I don’t hate nobody, life goes on, you live you learn and you move on, if you got god in your life you don’t have no reason to worry about that mess or anybody else.

Media: Roy, do any of your sons have the aspiration to fight, if so would you ever train them?

RJJR: Actually my youngest son he has the notion and acts like he really want’s to fight and I really worry about him. He does a lot of stuff that In used to do when I was his age, if he sees me training he will have a fit and want to train and I used to be like that, I hope he don’t pick it up, I hope he stops, he is the one that I think would really get into it for real.

Media: How old is he?

RJJR: He is six and it is bad, it’s bad already and I hope he finds something that he likes better because it is already bad right now but it is not my choice to choose, that is in god’s world. All I can do is give him the best help and support that I can, I wouldn’t want to train him because I would never want to develop a relationship that me and my daddy have right now. My definition of a parent is someone that child can depend on for life, a person that the person can trust, a person that is with you for your whole life, that would be my definition  and that is how I raise my kids.

Media: Roy, when you eventually do hand the gloves up do you have any aspirations to stay in boxing, like training, promoting, things like that?

RJJR: No, I really don’t have those aspirations I may promote a little somewhere. Boxing is a good thing but boxing is a monster too, it is a two headed sword and I think one of my main problems is that I don’t want to depend on people, a little too much of nothing. We are all human and we all get tired and I feel the same as everyone sometimes because I am human and we all are in this human world and sometimes we all get caught in stuff a little bit. But at the same time you have to know that one thing about me is I am not stupid, I don’t have to much pride to say that it is over, a lot of those guys did not have that, pride can be bad and when you cant see that it is over then you have a problem.

Media: What about the people that say that it is over for you?

RJJR: At the same time people are going to say that anyway, like Holyfield, I am one of the people that said it was over for him before he beat Mike Tyson, so if he listened to me he would have made probably the hundred million dollars against Tyson, that’s why it isn’t up to me to make that call. Because only he knows when it is over, so it’s like I wouldn’t expect him to listen to me, so he shouldn’t expect me to listen to him because who is responsible for where I am now?

Media: You?

RJJR: Thank you and that is who I listen to.