One-on-One with Jeff Mayweather

By Brad Cooney


One-on-One with Jeff Mayweather was fortunate enough to get an exclusive, and candid interview with Jeff Mayweather, uncle of the great Floyd Mayweather Jr. Recently Just prior to Shannon Briggs winning the WBO title, Jeff Mayweather parted ways with the Briggs camp. Jeff informs Boxingtalk that he has recently signed with the tough Sultan Ibragimov (19-0-16KO-1D) from Russia. Ironically, Sultan is the mandatory challenger to Shannon Briggs.

BT - Jeff thanks for joining Boxingtalk, what's the latest with you ?

JM - Well you probably know that I no longer train Shannon Briggs, and I am now training Sultan Ibragimov.

BT-  Jeff what happened with that? Why did you and Shannon Briggs part ways ?

JM - Well basically what happened was when I arrived in camp, I thought I was going to be the head trainer. To me it didn't seem that Shannon had faith in me, and they brought in like 4 different trainers in the camp and that was too many for me. Basically I thought I was hired to be the head trainer, and if that wasn't going to be the case I didn't need to be there. It needs to be set, it shouldn't be that I find out after I get there that I wasn't going to be the head trainer. I asked myself, 'Where do I fit in'? I am basically a quiet guy, but I know what I am doing inside of the ring, and maybe Shannon was needing someone to bark, and yell at him. Business is business, and Shannon even invited me back to the camp, and honestly, I seriously thought about it, but I asked myself 'why' ? If I wasn't going to be the head trainer it didn't make sense to me. I battled within myself on whether or not to go back, and then I got a call from Sultans' people. They heard that I was no longer training Shannon, and they gave me a guarantee that I would be the head guy, and they guaranteed me my percentage. With Shannon, nothing was written in stone and I never knew where I stood. With Shannon I guess they wanted a take charge guy, well I am a take charge guy but I'm not the kind of guy to yell and scream at people. If they were looking for someone with experience and knowledge, then I am your guy.

BT - What are your thoughts on Shannon Briggs going on and winning the title ?

JM - I mean I am glad Shannon won, he's a good guy and I am happy for him. I am thankful that him and Scott Hirsch gave me a chance and put me on the bigger stage. If they wouldn't have done that, nobody would have seen me on the bigger stage. If it wasn't for them giving me that shot, I would have still been the other Mayweather that nobody knows about. There is another Mayweather out here that trains, and when Ray Austin fought Sultran he fought the fight of his life, and that's what put me on the radar.

BT - I talked to Big Briggs about a week ago, and he told me that he has no hard feelings towards you at all.

JM - Like I said, it's just business. I have nothing against Shannon, and I have a job to do. Sultans' people gave me a situation that I feel a whole lot better about, and I have a job to do now.

BT - Sultan is the mandatory for Shannon Briggs, that's interesting isn't it ? (laughs).

JM - That's very interesting (laughs). What's so funny is that it seems like the whole circle that I am involved with happens to involve Sultan Ibragimov. All of this happened this way, and I believe that I should have been a part of Shannon winning that title, but it just wasn't right for me to be there.
BT - Looks like you're going to get a shot at the title after all Jeff.

JM - Right, and not only that, this is a much better situation for me all the way around. I want teach this guy as much as I can, and I know what Shannon does. There are things that certain fighters do that's their bread and butter, and it's my job working with Sultan to take away Shannon's bread and butter.

BT - How much time have you spent with Sultan ?

JM - Basically it was kind of like American Idol, I had ot audition for the job (laughing). It was me John David Jackson, and one other person.

BT - Jeff just as long as that arrogant British dude Simon wasn't there (laughs)

JM - (LAUGHING) - no, no Simon, but they had some other Russian guy there. I was confident that I got the job because I put all of my marbles into the basket because Shannon called me to come back, and I made up my mind to go with Sultan because I didn't want to be second fiddle.

BT - What do you see in Sultan that impresses you the most so far Jeff ?

JM - Sultan is quick and he will be tough for anyone because he's a southpaw. Sultan has good speed too, and I will work on his defense. I know what Shannon does well, and it's my job to take that away from him.

BT - Which is punch, that's what Shannon does well. Does Sultan have a good chin ?

JM - They both punch well, I have worked with both of them. Shannon is a big massive guy, but Sultan punches hard too.

BT - Let's move on to PBF, do you think Floyd will retire?

JM - I don't really know because that's his decision. I think that most fight fans do not want to see him retire because he's still young. Floyd has been boxing his whole life, and I can say this, if he does retire I commend him. If he retires he will be the first fighter ever to walk away not just on top but being considered the best fighter in the game at the time of his retirement. I think it was one of those things in the heat of the moment, and I think he got caught up in his emotions. If it is his decision to retire, I commend him, he's had a long career and I know how hard he has worked to get to the top. Floyd may be burned out on boxing, and if he does go, I applaud him.

BT - Jeff if the PBF vs Oscar DelaHoya fight does go down, how do you see that fight?

JM - I think that Floyd is just too fast, and he's in his prime still. Oscar is still a hell of a fighter, but he's not the same as he used to be. I lean towards Floyd, he's the much faster fighter. It actually may be a boring fight, a chess match, a fight I think that will be interesting because of what is involved. That fight would be father vs son, brother vs brother.

BT - Do you think Floyd Sr will train Oscar if he fights Floyd Jr.?

JM - Yes he would, it's no secret that Floyd and his father has had issues. Floyd Sr has to make a living, and it's been Floyd chasing Oscar for this fight for a long time.

BT - But recently Oscar is calling out Floyd.

JM - Well the thing is this, if a person chases you long enough eventually you are going to turn around and answer the call.

BT - Back to you Jeff, who else do you have in your stable?

JM - Well I used to have J.D. Chapman, and Ray Austin but now that I am on this level with Sultan, I have to make a full commitment to him.

BT - When is the mandatory set for the Briggs vs Sultan Ibragimov fight?

JM - Well it's within 90 days, and the target date is January 19th.

BT - Jeff back to Floyd real quick, and I'll let you go. Was there a time that you can put your finger on as Floyd was growing up in boxing where you said "wow, this kid is going to be someone special"?

JM - Believe it or not, it was when Floyd was 5 years old. I said this kid is going to be a world champion, if not the best fighter that has ever put on gloves. I saw a prodigy, a kid that was unlike any other kid. Some of what the people see that he does was taught to him, but a lot was a natural ability. At 5 years old I was watching a super star in the making. It was almost like watching a Sammy Davis Jr or something. He was doing things at 5 yrs old that 30 yr olds couldn't do in the ring. When I was in the amateurs fighting I saw Roy Jones Jr, and I told my coach that Roy was different, he's different than everybody else here, and sure enough he goes on to be a legend. The same thing with Floyd, as long as he stayed out of trouble, I knew that one day he was going to grow up and be someone special.

BT - How many amateur fights did Floyd have?

JM - He had about 90 fights.

BT  - Did he lose any of them ?

JM - He really lost just one, the one that he lost was to Carlos Navarro. It was the fight to go to the Pan Am games. He lost a few others but they were robberies.

BT-  Do you think when Floyd does hang up his gloves that he will stay in boxing in some capacity ?

JM - I think so, boxing is in his blood. Floyd will give back to boxing one way or the other. I don't know if he will train especially with millions of dollars at the house. Floyd may go into promotions or something, but we'll see.

BT - Jeff it's been a real pleasure talking to you, is there anything that you would like to say to the fans in closing?

JM - Keep watching me, I am going to be right up there real soon.


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