Juarez to undergo eye surgery, targets March return

By Brad Cooney


Juarez to undergo eye surgery, targets March return

2000 Olympic Silver Medallist and world title challenger Rocky Juarez has informed Boxingtalk that he will be undergoing eye surgery to remove scar tissue that has built up due to the injury sustained during his fight against Juan Manuel Marquez.  Juarez says that it may be as late as April before he can return to the ring.   Juarez reflects back on his performance against Juan Manuel Marquez, and shares his thoughts on the upcoming Manny Pacquiao vs Marquez duel.

BT – What's up Rock, what's the latest with you?

RJ – The latest is that it looks like I will be having to get some eye surgery.  The doctors did a bad job stitching my eye up after my fight with Marquez.  It looks like it will be March, or April before I can return to the ring.

BT – What kind of eye surgery do you have to get?

RJ – I have some scar tissue that built up.  My eye is still swollen and still sensitive, and it's been over a month since the fight.  It should have been healed up more by now.

BT – Where do you see yourself right now within your division? 

RJ – Well where I see myself, and where they see where I belong may be different.  I want another shot at a world title, but I feel that they will give me a test, and I will have to prove myself again.  I think the fans feel that I am capable of competing with the best, but with me losing the decisions, I will have to prove myself again.  Having these shots given to me and not succeeding, well I don't know what's going to happen.  I would like to fight Robert Guerrero if I can.  I will take a big shot at 130lbs as well.

BT – Is everything alright with you and Golden Boy?

RJ – Everything is fine, I always talk to Shelly Finkel first though.  Shelly told me that I need to get my eye fixed first before I do anything.  They were going to put me on the under card of Juan Diaz vs Katsidis fight.

BT – Are you staying in shape, still working hard in the gym?

RJ – I got back into the gym two weeks after the fight.  My hands feel great, my conditioning is still there, it's just getting this cut taken care of now, that's first.

BT – What do you think you could have done differently in your fight against Marquez?

RJ – I should have stayed in the pocket a little more, I was backing up a little bit too much.  When he would commit with his offense, I would back up a few steps, and I should have stayed in the pocket.  I should have allowed him to come in, and then throw my shots.  I should have continued to pressure him.  I think the cut did effect me, it happened right in the beginning when I felt so comfortable.  The cut happened, and it threw my mind off.

BT – I don't see how a cut that bad wouldn't mess with you to some degree.

RJ – Well what I tell people is that it wasn't the blood that effected me so much, it was the fact that the cut was there, and that I had to defend it.  I was worried about getting head butted again, and then I would have risked losing by TKO.

BT – How do you see the Pacquiao vs Marquez fight ending up?

RJ – Well I never fought Pacquiao, so I never felt his power, but I was surprised with Marquez. He's a good puncher, but I have fought better.  He has my respect, but I have to speak truly and say that he was not my toughest foe.  I saw everything coming when I fought him, and he never had me hurt. 

BT – Would you say that your fight against Humberto Soto was tougher than your fight against Marquez?

RJ – Oh definitely, I think to this day Soto was my toughest fight.  I caught Soto with my best shots, and he took them.  It was a back and forth fight, and he wanted the fight more, and he took the decision.

BT – Do you plan on going back down to 126lbs, so you can get that power back in your hook?

RJ – That's what people say, but I don't think I lost power.  I think I just didn't commit like I should have.  I caught Marquez clean a few times, he took some good shots, and at the press conference he admitted that I hurt him.

BT – How far to the back of the line do you think you will have to get before you get another title shot?

RJ – Well it depends, it might be my next fight.  It depends on how the cards fall, and I might get a break again.  They might throw me Robert Guerrero, I don't think Guerrero really fought any big names, or recognized names.  He's fought good opponents, I can't say that he hasn't, but not big names.  I think back when I was supposed to fight him on the May 5th fight, I would have been his biggest name.

BT – I still think that a Robert Guerrero vs Rocky Juarez fight would be a nice under card fight.

RJ – Yes, it would be nice Showtime Championship Boxing card.  Robert Guerrero made short work of his last opponent.  He dominated the guy, and I think a fight with me would be a good fight.

BT – Of course we all need to have the Guerrero family in our prayers as his wife battles cancer. 

RJ – Yes definitely, Robert is a good and humble guy.  I don't have anything negative to say about that guy.  On the business end, I feel a fight between us is just a matter of time though.  I have talked to the guy before, he's a great guy. 

BT – How do you see the match up between you and Robert Guerrero?

RJ – It would be interesting because Robert Guerrero doesn't go backwards.  The guy is a warrior, and sometimes it's not the names that you fight, sometimes the opponent you fight gives you a Hell of a fight.  I think I got more respect for my Barrera fight, but I thought my fight against Soto was much, much tougher.

BT – Rock do you have any closing thoughts for the fans?

RJ – To all of my fans, just keep faith in me.  Rocky Juarez is not out, and I am still hungry to be a world champion.  My grandfather is still living, so I still have that drive.  I look forward to proving myself once again.