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April 11, 2017

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: LOU DIBELLA
By G. Leon

GL: The Crawford-Diaz fight was recently announced in New York and some of the remarks you made about Crawford and his people avoiding the fight with Diaz seemed to have annoyed the Crawford camp and Bob Arum...(cutting in) I never said they were avoiding him, I just said it took a year of calling him out to get the fight. Bob Arum squeezed my you know whats to get an incredibly favorable deal and I had to sign away options that I would not normally have done to get Felix the opportunity. But I think he's got a great chance to shock Crawford and beat him or give him more than anybody else believes he could. I think this is a great opportunity for Diaz to prove himself. I thought he beat Lamont Peterson and I thought that decision was controversial, in my mind it could have easily gone in Diaz's favor. You saw what he did to Sammy Vasquez, that was a dominant performance outside of his weight class and now he's going to get the opportunity to fight the guy that people think is the best at 140 so we'll see what happens.

GL: Right now Crawford is the best at 140. He's got significant height and reach advantages over Diaz. What do you see in Diaz stylistically that leads you to believe he can be successful against a taller, longer boxer like Crawford?

Lou DiBella: "Gamboa was way smaller than Crawford and I thought the pressure gave Crawford some problems until he took control. I think that Diaz that is a bigger, stronger Gamboa that is going to be able to put tremendous pressure on Crawford. I think this is going to be a tremendously crowd pleasing type of fight."

GL: We're a couple of weeks away from Berto-Porter. How has everything been going with regards to that event? What can you tell us about how the undercard is taking shape?

LD: "The undercard is sensational and people should get out there and buy their tickets. We've added King Kong Ortiz to the undercard and he's fighting Derric Rossy. We know he wants to stay busy and he's probably going to come right back quickly if he can. I mean look, Rossy is a tough guy and he's coming to fight, so I think it will be a pleasing fight style wise. Derric was in the gym training for another fight so it's not like we pulled somebody off the couch. I'm looking forward to the opportunity for people to see Ortiz. The Hatley fight with Charlo should be a really good fight. Charlo's defending his title against Hatley. A kid from Houston against a kid from Dallas in Brooklyn, so that should be a great fight. The rest of the undercard is loaded also including a tremendous fight between Amanda Serrano and Diana Santana. Santana is a two time world champion herself and they'll be fighting for the vacant 118 lb title in the WBO. That's a very historic fight for women's boxing and Puerto Rican boxing. Amanda is looking to become the first women ever to hold titles in five different weight classes and the first Puerto Rican boxer to ever win titles in five divisions. Right now she's tied with Miguel Cotto at four and if you think about all of the other Puerto Rican greats, from Trinidad, to Gomez, to Camacho all of them did it three times, Cotto and Amanda are the only two to do in four weight classes so this would be a very historical win for her."

GL: I've also heard that Julian Sosa and Joseph Williams will be on the undercard against the ever dangerous TBA. Is that correct?

LD: "Yes. I believe they may have opponents by now but I don't have a bout sheet in front of me, but yes they will be in action. Williams is coming off of his win over Lenin Castillo that was on Shobox and Julian Sosa is a Mexican out of New York that has a tremendous following. He's become a huge ticket seller here and there's a growing Mexican-American community in New York. Sosa's father Arellano is becoming one of the best trainers in the area and I'm very excited to be working with him."

GL: Will DBE be having a show at the Paramount on April 29?

LD: "No. We will be announcing it this coming week, but we have a show at the Paramount on May 18. We'll be announcing the details shortly. I'm really looking to the April 22 event, the fight with Berto and Porter is a hell of a match-up that promises to be exciting. Style wise they match up really well and I can't see that be anything but a fun fight. I think that's just going to be two guys throwing down and I'm looking forward to that fight."

GL: Closing thoughts?

LD: "Come to the Barclay's Center on April 22, there are various seats available at all price ranges, come out its going to be a terrific, terrific event. In May Felix Diaz is going to get his shot against Terence Crawford, and as good as Crawford is, and I've got nothing but respect for the guy, I never said he's ducking Felix Diaz, but I worked very hard to get Felix Diaz that fight because he's worked really hard and he wanted it so bad. I certainly think is going to be a much greater challenge than Hank Lundy or John Molina or Postol. I think it's going to be a real good fight and a real good test for Crawford, if Crawford is the best he's going to win and if he's not the best you're going to have a new champion."

Send questions and comments to: boxingtalkg@Yahoo.com



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