Juan Diaz: At lightweight I am unbeatable!

By G. Leon


Juan Diaz: At lightweight I am unbeatable!

GL: Can you give us some thoughts on your October 13 unification bout with Julio Diaz? "I'm just excited to be going for my third belt. This was one of my dreams. Obviously my first was to become world champion, but the other was to unify the division and I'm getting closer and closer. I'm just preparing for a tough fight and it makes it interesting that both of our last names are Diaz."

GL: What do you think about Julio Diaz as a fighter? What fights have you watched of him?

Juan Diaz: "I've seen a few of his fights and he's a very talented guy. He likes to use angles and he knows how to use the ring very well. I've seen his fights with Jesus Chavez, Javier Jauregui and Jose Luis Castillo. Those are the three that I've watched so far."

GL: What do you see in Diaz that you plan on exploiting on October 13?

JD: "From what I hear, he's going to come in and not box me at all. He's just going to stand toe to toe with me. If that's the case, from what I've seen he doesn't have a real good inside game, so I will take full advantage of that. And if he decides to box me, well, that's what I do best. When guys box me or move back that's when the advantage that I have comes in, when guys are trying to move away from me."

GL: When you first became champion you hadn't acquired what's known as man strength, do you feel you have it now?

JD: "I believe so. Every fight and every year that goes by I get stronger and stronger. But I still have a couple of years to go, but right now I feel that in the lightweight division, I'm unbeatable."

GL: Nobody will question your conditioning because you throw so many punches, but your body doesn't tend to get as toned as other lightweights. Why is that? Can you make 130 if you went the extra mile?

JD: "I don't think it would be possible for me to work harder. Maybe I could be a little bit more dedicated with the diet part and move down to 130 pounds, but I don't want to be like all these guys who have to take Pedialyte after they weigh in. Twenty-four hours isn't enough time for your body to recover if you haven't eaten in two days. I like to keep my body comfortable and I like to eat breakfast the day of the weigh-in."

GL: If you walk out of there with 3 belts on October 13, is the WBC champion next on your things to do list?

JD: "My plans and my goals for the near future are to unify and be the undisputed lightweight champion of the world. I started this plan with Freitas, now it's Diaz and then after that I'm going for the WBC belt."

GL: Do you consider Diaz a step up from Freitas?

JD: "He's a step up because he's a world champion and he's standing in my way preventing me from getting to where I want to be and doing what I have to do. It's a little bit different fight than Freitas, because both guys have different styles of fighting. But every new challenge I always look at is as a tougher challenge than the previous fight."

GL: Would you like to stay more active in 2008 or are you pleased with your current activity rate?

JD: "I'm not pleased at all with my rate of activity. I would have loved to fight three or four times this year. I was scheduled to fight in February, but that fell through. But things happen, next year I want to get three or four fights in. That's the way I've been most successful and that's where I plan on keeping it."

GL: When people talk about the best young fighters in boxing, they talk about guys on the come-up like Andre Berto. Berto is 23 and he's knocking on the door to become a contender, you're 23, you've been a champion for three years, have two belts and are going for your third. In addition to that you're the second youngest champion in the history of boxing. Do you feel you've gotten enough credit for your current accomplishments?

JD: "A lot of peoplel see a lot of guys up and coming who could be superstars that have a lot of knockouts and are flashy and spontaneous in the ring. I think that's one of the reasons I don't get a lot of publicity is because I don't have that knockout power to make them go ooh. But I make for great action fights no matter who I fight and I think in the future that's what's going to start turning people's heads."

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

JD: "I want to thank everyone for all their support. Stay tuned for October 13. It's going to be a great fight and if Julio Diaz does what he says he's going to do it might make for a fight of the year."


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