Rocky Juarez: "I will become champion!"

By Brad Cooney


Rocky Juarez: "I will become champion!"

Rocky Juarez came up a short against Marco Antonio Barrera in his last effort, but looks to get back into the ring in January or February. Juarez tells Boxingtalk that a promotional deal is in the works for him, and the three promotional companies in the running are Golden Boy, Top Rank,and Banner Promotions.

BT - What's up Rock, it's been a minute since we last spoke ?

RJ - Well I have been training, and staying in shape. I am negotiating a promotional contract on my part between Golden Boy, Banner Promotions, and Top Rank. Everything seems to be going pretty good, I would like to fight in January or February.

BT - With that said, I am guessing that you would like to get your promotional deal done here pretty quick.

RJ - It should be getting done quick, it's been in the works since about 1 week after my fight with Barrera. I have been training with Ronnie Shields, but I also have been working with my original coach Ray too.

BT - Do you think you will stay on with Ronnie Shields ?

RJ - Everything has been going really good with Ronnie, we have built a good relationship. It's exciting to have a new trainer on board, and I have confidence in Ronnie, it's a good vibe, and it's nice to know that he wants the best for me, and wants to help me out the best way possible.

BT - Rock, sometimes it's not that the older trainer is bad, it's just that a fighter needs a fresh new face, with fresh ideas. Was that the case with you and Ray, your old trainer ?

RJ - Yes Ray has gotten me to a point that was great for my career. One person once told me, "never take away what's gotten you where you are today". I can have two coaches now, Ray can give Ronnie his opinions, and Ronnie can be in front of me when I am on the stool. I think everything will go better. Ray will still be with me during training camps, I am just changing my corner-man with Ronnie Shields doing that now. I left the gym that I have been in for 13 years, I left because I felt I needed a new environment, a new start to make me a better fighter. It was hard for me to leave my old gym after being there for 13 years.

BT - Rock are you training out of Willie Savannah's gym now?

RJ - Yes I am at Willy Savannah's. I am training at an earlier time now, and I have the rest of the day to recover.

BT - Juan Diaz, and Holyfield workout there.

RJ - Yes, both guys are taking off right now though, they both recently had fights.

BT - What has Ronnie Shields done for you that impresses you the mos so far ?

RJ - Well it's a real comfort zone there with Ronnie. As a fighter when a coach is able to tell you when you are doing something wrong, for example sparring, it's good to be comfortable with that coach. I feel that we will build a great relationship, and we will make it as a world champion.

BT - Is there a new spark there with Ronnie ?

RJ - Yes there is definitely a new spark there, and I felt I needed that new direction for my career. Just seeing the Pacquiao vs Morales fight, I was like man, I feel that urge still'. I know I am capable of becoming world champion, even against someone like Pacquiao, I feel I can compete against the top fighters out there.

BT - You mentioned that you would like to get back into the ring in January or February, what type of fight are you looking for Rock?

RJ - All 3 promoters so far have told me that they would like to get me a stay busy fight first, and then the second or third fight have me ready to fight for a world title again.

BT - Which of the three promoters are you leaning towards most Rock ?

RJ - Bob Arum has been out there longer than any of them, and I have never heard anything negative about the guy. Banner promotions are smaller, but they work harder for their fighters, and Golden Boy has blown up, taking all of the fighters, they are taking some of the smaller fighters so that would be a better chance for me to get a title fight.

BT - Bob Arum ended up with Pacquiao after-all.

RJ - There has to be a good reason for that, maybe Arum offered something better, I don't know.

BT - What weight do you want to fight at next Rocky ?

RJ - I am looking to drop down to 126lbs. I am looking to win a title at 126lbs and jump back up to 130lbs. Why not try to win the title at two weight divisions?

BT - So who do you want at 126lbs ?

RJ - Salidos tested positive, so the IBF is vacant, so a fight with Guerrero is there and I would take that fight. I believe I built up a name for myself, and I have the tools to be world champion. I lost to Barrera, but I believe I won the first time against Barrera. The second fight, he didnt' fight me and that shows a lot, it shows that I belong up there with the best, I really believe that.

BT - So no matter who you sign with, you want to fight at 126lbs next ?

RJ - Well between 126 and 130 give or take.

BT - Give me your thoughts on Manny Pacquiao vs Morales.

RJ - Man, I saw that fight and I felt sorry for Morales. Morales has given so much over the years to his fans, and to see him fall like that was sad. Morales has accomplished so much in boxing, I can truly say, I felt sorry for him.

BT - Morales is a warrior, and always will be. Anybody who knows anything about boxing should know that.

RJ - Manny was so determined that night, he was hungry. I think a fight between me and Pacquiao would be a great fight, neither of us back up. I think I would have a punchers chance against that guy, but man he's like a Mexican Assassin.

BT - Rock, is there anything that you would like to say to the Boxingtalk fans in closing ?

RJ - Well I would like to tell the Boxingtalk fans that Rocky Juarez is in the gym, and I am waiting for my next fight. I want to say that I will become a world champion, so keep the faith.


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