Roy Jones Jr. on potential Joe Calzaghe Fight: "I ain't going to run like Bernard did!"

By G. Leon


Roy Jones Jr. on potential Joe Calzaghe Fight: "I ain't going to run like Bernard did!"

GL: Can you give us some thoughts on the Joe Calzaghe-Bernard Hopkins fight? "I thought it was a really good fight. I thought it could have been called a draw. It could have gone either way. The reason I say that is because when you look at the reality of the situation, you have a 43 and a 36 year old man and you don't expect the 43 old man to be the busier. He economically kept up though because he landed the more quality punches and the harder punches in the fight and of course the younger guy landed more punches, but that's what you would expect when a guy who is 36 is fighting a guy who is 43. Really the 36 year old should have been able to wear him down and he didn't, but Bernard got hit with low blows and he was smart, he waited to get himself back together and he came back and I think he won that round. It was a much closer fight than what they called it. I don't think it was that far apart because Hopkins clearly landed the cleaner punches throughout the fight, Calzaghe just landed more of the punches."

GL: It sounds like you're saying the judges preferred quantity over quality...

Roy Jones Jr: (cutting in) "And it ain't nothing wrong with that, because at the same time he was forcing  in the issue in making the fight and if he would have fought like Bernard did, it would have been a very boring fight."

GL: Obviously you're pleased Calzaghe won since you felt a Hopkins rematch was not doable. Is Calzaghe you're primary option and what are the chances of that happening next?

RJJ: "We're going to sit back and explore the fight and see where it makes the most sense. It's a fight that I want, it's a fight that he wants and HBO wants it so I'm sure we're going to make it happen. It's just a matter of where's the best place to do it, when and how."

GL: What would you do differently against Calzaghe?

RJJ: "I'm a little bit younger, so I still got a pretty good work rate myself and I think I can work a little bit more than Bernard did. I never been in there with the guy, but I'm not going to straight run from him like Bernard did."

GL: Do you think you can get a decision over Calzaghe in Wales?

RJJ: "I don't know, but if we make the fight in Wales, I'm going to have to feel comfortable. They might have to give me a rematch clause to go there, because I know if it's as close as the Hopkins fight was, they're not going to give it to me.Truthfully if he would have lost to Hopkins here I think it would have been fair for Hopkins to fight him over there. So if I fight him over there and they rob me on the cards, I think it would be fair for him to fight me here next. Calzaghe pushed the issue and that's why he got the decision, but nobody won decisively."

GL: Are you so strong on that position that there won't be a fight without a rematch clause?

RJJ: "I ain't going to say all that now, I would love to have one, and I'm sure he'd want one if he fought me over here."

GL: Would you look to bring the fight to him more than Hopkins did?

RJJ: "I'd look to counter him too, but I wouldn't do so much running like Hopkins did, I'm definitely going to be fighting him more."

GL: Does the fact that Calzaghe is not a big puncher make it easier for you to go into the ring being more offensive minded?

RJJ: "No, because he's a bigger punher than he credits for because he hides some big shots behind the smaller ones. He threw a left hand at Hopkins that if he would have hit him it would have been a problem for Hopkins, but he was ready for it. He throws a lot of big shots, he just couldn't land them on Hopkins so he started throwing pitty pats. Don't think he can't punch out though, he didn't knock Byron Mitchell out with a slap shot."

GL: According to Bernard tickets sales for the fight were horrendous. Do you think the fight with Calzaghe makes the most sense and dollars in Wales?

RJJ: "No, and I don't want to hate on nobody, but Americans haven't been breaking their necks to see Bernard fight anyways, you feel me? That's what the truth is. On top of that, I think also that when you take somebody who's not the most loveable guy in the world and he makes a racist statement during the promotion, that probably hurt a little bit too. I understand that you want to go in this to make money, but you gotta understand that some people don't think you're saying that because you want to make money, they think you're saying that because that's what you really mean. A lot of people that were probably planning on supporting him didn't show up. Shoot, if I was white I'd want somebody to kick his ass now, and I still ain't going, but I hope he gets his ass whooped."

GL: John Wirt was recently announced as Square Ring's new CEO. Tell us about that.

RJJ: "John has been with King for so long and he's been trained by the best. After talking to him he's got a good heart and he's not the kind of guy who wants to take advantage of anybody, I see what Oscar's doing and now that I got somebody on my team who really knows the business, we're going to get this thing started. It's not that I don't know it well enough, I just need somebody to cross the t's and dot the i's."

GL: You said like Oscar's doing, does that mean you plan on signing fighters, getting dates with networks and actively promoting?

RJJ: "Most definitely. I'm not going to be fighting no more than two times a year now and I'm going to have the time to do it and we're going to get it done."

GL: Closing thoughts?

RJJ: "Thank y'all for showing your support. For this last hurrah I'm making I'm going to get it together and get myself in great shape and be ready to perform. And if I got to Wales I want as many of my fans to come with me.

GL: Does Calzaghe go the distance with Roy Jones Jr?

RJJ: "I ain't going to say nothing yet, but I know the guy is in good shape so we'll see."


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