RICKY HATTON and FLOYD MAYWEATHER SR.
CONFERENCE CALL TRANSCRIPT
March 4, 2009
Richard Schaefer: So it’s Ricky Hatton versus Manny Pacquiao, two of the most exciting fighters of our generation, the best pound for pound fighter against the most popular fighter in the world, and the stage is set for a great showdown on May 2 live from the MGM Grand and live on HBO Pay-Per-View.
In 1889, exactly 120 years ago, one of the most famous poets, and no, I’m not talking about Floyd Mayweather, Sr. but Rudyard Kipling came up with the “Ballad of East and West,” and let me just quote you quickly: But there is neither East nor West, border nor breed nor bird when two strong men stand face to face, though they come from the ends of the earth.” So the stage is set not for the Ballad of East and West, but for the Battle of East and West.
So I’d like to give you as well a quick summary for the media, we just concluded in England, a two-city media tour which started in Manchester with over 6,000 fans, including a large contingency of Filipinos, I would estimate about 1,500, cheering on their hero, and appreciating as well Floyd Mayweather, Sr.’s talent as a poet. We went on to Ricky’s local pub, where Manny challenged Ricky to a game of darts. We had the world champion in darts in charge of the event. Pacquiao took the early lead but Hatton very quickly stopped that and came back and won the contest very clearly. We then moved on to London, where we had a great press turnout at the British Museum of Military History (Imperial War Museum). The media in England came in full force. It was a media-only event, but again, there was a very large group of Filipinos, which found their way to the museum as well as many, many Brits who were there to support Ricky Hatton. Throughout the press events, there were of course some interesting confrontations between the two great trainers, Freddie Roach and Floyd Mayweather, Sr.
Tickets went on sale about two weeks ago. Most of the tickets are sold. There are some $750 and $1,000 tickets left. Tremendous interest for tickets from the United Kingdom, and so you all better get ready for the Ricky Hatton Wonderland on May 2 in Las Vegas.
I’d like to turn it over now to the two division world champion with a record of 54 and 1 with 32 KOs. He’s the current and Ring Magazine and IBO World Junior Welterweight champion, truly one of the biggest names and stars of the sport because of the excitement he brings to the ring every single time. Please welcome Ricky “The Hitman” Hatton.
Ricky Hatton: Thank you, Richard. Thank you, everyone, for joining us. I don’t think I can quite express how much I’m looking forward to this fight. I think everyone’s dream as a boxer is to become the world champion. And in doing so four times and in three weight divisions, I think I’ve had a fantastic career so far, but I’m nowhere near finished with what I want to do. I think that with the title that is on the line, Manny Pacquiao, you can’t get any higher accolades in boxing really. To be the best in the world is a fantastic achievement. The number one pound for pound fighter in all weight divisions, I don’t think there’s any higher. So I’m absolutely, absolutely, really looking forward to the fight. Me and Floyd have been working together now the last couple of weeks. We’re a little ahead of schedule in our training. I feel really sharp. I’m starting to really work five and six-mile runs and sprints. We have been doing the hard work and I’ve gone as fast as ever as straightaway in the early stages of my training. So obviously the speed factor is going to be a big thing, with Manny’s probably main attribute being his speed. But I challenged for the pound for pound title once before. That was at 147, and I lost that fight. And that was the only fight I’ve lost out of forty-six fights. And everybody at junior welterweight, big strong fighters like Castillo, Kostya Tszyu, were probably the two strongest fighters, I’ve stopped them.
So I’ve always said at 140 pounds, I believe that I’m too strong, I’m too big. But I feel with the technical stuff that me and Floyd have been working on, the hand speed, the combination punches and all around defense and boxing ability, I think Manny has got something else, Manny has got something else other than just the sheer size. I think there’s a lot of technical ability that he should be a little bit worried about as well come fight night.
But saying is one thing and doing is another. It’s a very, very tough fight. I thank Manny for giving me the opportunity to challenge for the pound for pound title, but I think to say I’m confident would be an understatement. But I thank him for the chance to fight this title. He’s a gentleman.. He’s a great fighter. He’s a nice man of boxing, and our fight can’t be anything but a great fight, and the fans are in for an absolute treat. But I’m working out, training’s going well, and it can’t come sooner. Thank you very much.
Q: I just wanted to ask you, when you turned pro way back in 1997 against Colin McAuley at the Kingsway Leisure Center, did you ever dream that your career would reach these heights?
Ricky Hatton: Well, yes and no. I obviously dreamed of becoming a world champion. That’s any youngster’s dream is to obviously become the world champion. Every youngster dreams of becoming a world champion. And I was very fortunate to do so, four times in three weight divisions. But I have to be frank, never did I dream of being in a position to fight for the pound for pound title, which means you’re the best champion out of all weight divisions. As much as I love to dream, I could have never have dreamed this. But I’m grateful that I’m in a position to do it. I’m not only just grateful for being in the position, it’s a position that I believe I’m going to take full advantage of.
Q: I spoke to your father recently, and can you talk a little bit about the relationship that you and your father have and how he has advised you in your career? And it seems now he’s playing more of a role in your career. Can you talk about that a little bit for us?
Ricky Hatton: Yeah, that’s right. My father has set me on the right road, and I think that’s why as a personality and as a person, I think that’s why the fans like me. He brought me up the correct way. And with me, I’m the follower of both the game of boxing inside the ring and outside the ring and then some, we’ve learned a lot from previous promoters and sometimes we’ve learned a lot from the not good times with promoters. He’s just done a fantastic job for me. And sometimes a lot of people get the praise if you like, and rightly so, like your trainer and your manger, your promoter. But some people, what sometimes gets forgotten about is the parents. Obviously my dad is not only a good parent, but plays an active role in advising now. And I think he’s learned a lot. He was very clever in the first place, but he’s learned a lot over the years through boxing. And I think the fact that we’re having an ongoing relationship with Hatton Promotions after this fight, and the fact that Golden Boy wants to be associated with Hatton Promotions and in particular with my father I think speaks volume in itself.
Q: Ricky, you and Manny are different in a lot of respects, but one of them is that he has had a career in which he’s been able to kind of move up and down, well, move up mostly, in weight class, and win a bunch of different titles along the way, go all the way up to welterweight, beat Oscar De La Hoya in December and now come back down to your territory to go for your championship at 140 pounds.You are a guy – I know you won one of the belts at Welterweight Title, but you’ve always fancied yourself as a true junior welterweight, a division that you have dominated for several years. And I wonder if you can just sort of give me your take on which is more impressive or which do you think is kind of a bigger deal. Is it a guy that can just stay in a division like yourself and thoroughly dominate or like Bernard Hopkins dominated for so many years at middleweight, or what Manny can do, which is to climb the scales and just continue to beat quality opponents all the way up division by division?
Ricky Hatton: Well, one it’s a phenomenal achievement what Manny’s done, he won his first world title at 106 pounds. So that’s incredible there, a man fighting at the weight he’s fighting at now. I would say, no disrespect, obviously intended, but being Manny’s weight, when you look at – say if you win a title at superbantam weight, which is 8 stone 10 and then you move up to featherweight, that’s just four pounds for the 9 stone match, then up to super featherweight, it’s just another 4 pounds, for 9 stone 4. And then if you move up to 9 stone 9, it’s just another 5 pounds. Well, once you get to junior welterweight, you’ve got to move up a full 7 pounds. It sounds like I’m being a little disrespectful to Manny, which I’m not. I just said earlier he won his first time at 106, that’s an absolutely unbelievable achievement. But I think it’s a lot easier to move up through the weights the lighter weight you are, because obviously the weights are a lot closer together. But I think it’s not just roundabout. It’s also about the manner of your performances, how you can move the weights and do it comfortably. From where Manny started off when he one his first world title to really when he won his last world title, you would have to say I would say it’s more impressive, yes. Because 106 pounds to 147 pounds, even though the weights are very, very close together, it’s absolutely much a massive achievement.
Q: Because he spanned 40 pounds. I mean, his first championship was at 112, even though his pro debut was at 106. And he fought Oscar at 147, not for a title, but he has basically fought top fighters from within a 40 pound difference. Are you saying that that’s more impressive than a guy that stays at one division and thoroughly cleans it out?
Ricky Hatton: Yeah, I would say so.
Q: Okay. One of the other things I was wondering about in this fight is, you mentioned in your opening statement about the fact that Manny has great speed, and you’re obviously a very strong fighter in the division. And I wondered if, you watched the Oscar fight, do you think that the accolades that Manny is getting for doing what he did to Oscar may be overdone a little bit, because perhaps Oscar was a little bit more past his prime than many people thought, and that it was maybe a bit of a mirage and when he’s just down to 140 against a topnotch elite junior welterweight when he faces you, it’s going to be a different ballgame?
Ricky Hatton: Yeah, well, obviously, Oscar weighed 147 in the ring on the evening of the fight. And come fight night, for as long as I can remember, I regularly weigh 154. So I am going to be the biggest man that Manny has faced, even though he has faced Oscar. But anyone who defeats Oscar De La Hoya is a fantastic achievement, no matter weight, training or anything like that. But in my personal opinion, because – only Oscar can answer this question – because of what happened to make him weigh and how much weight he piled on after the weigh-in, which was very, very little – without sounding too disrespectful to Manny, I don’t think it was too hard to outbox Oscar that night and too hard to beat him. I with my new training camp with Floyd Mayweather, I would like to think I could have done the same.
Q: Hey, Ricky, you know that it’s going to be a big day in Vegas, because I don’t know if you are aware, that is Kentucky Derby Day. So with all the following Pacquiao has and all the following that you have, so it should be a great day in Vegas.
Ricky Hatton: Yes, fantastic. Hopefully I’ll win the best pound for pound fight in the world. Hopefully I might win a few dollars as well, by the sound of it.
Q: By the way, Ricky, are you planning a knockout, or you might use a tactical fight and try to feel Pacquiao out before a few rounds?
Ricky Hatton: No. I think it is going to be a tactical fight. When you fight at this level, it’s always got to be a tactical fight. I mean, you’re can’t just go in there and plow in. But I think in years gone by, I think a lot of people when they think of Ricky Hatton, they expect for me to just plow him. But under my new trainer, Floyd Mayweather, and just after spending seven weeks with Floyd, I think you can see the massive difference in the Paulie Malignaggi fight in my boxing ability, my hand speed. I mean, everybody thought Paulie was going to outbox me and outspeed me. And in fact, I think I outboxed him and outspeeded him. Even in the short two weeks I’ve been in training camp, I think Floyd will be testing only to this. I’m as fast now as I was when I finished with training camp last time, so these are all good signs. But, obviously Ricky Hatton always goes for the knockout. But with someone like Manny Pacquiao, he’s a good boxer, he’s very good with his feet in and out, and he’s got that southpaw stance. Obviously you can’t go in there just cross-band wallop so to speak, you’ve got to think about what you’re doing. But I know I can fight toe to toe, I know I can body punch. What’s impressing my new trainer now, I think I’m showing technical ability that I think he didn’t think I had at first. But I think that’s going to shock Manny more than the size and the power aspect.
Q: Finally, how do you feel about how everything working out with your new trainer?
Ricky Hatton: It’s going absolutely fantastic. Obviously me and Floyd worked together seven weeks for the last fight. So with this fight it will be two weeks more. We’ve been together nine weeks. And don’t forget, for the first three weeks of the seven weeks in the last training camp, me and Floyd were learning and getting used to each other. So really, from that point of view, we started our pads work and our training this week, there’s been no getting used to each other. We have just come together like peas and carrots as far as comfort’s sake.
No, it’s really in a way last time we had to spend – I don’t want to say waste three weeks, but we had to have three weeks just to get used to each other. So really, we did the hard work the last four weeks. But the first day we did the pads, me and Floyd, you’d have thought I’d never been away. In fact, I was even quicker. So these are all good signs. And he’s a good character. Training is hard work, but it’s also fun. I just wish he’s stop telling poems.
Q: Floyd, do you want to make any comments about either the relationship or the fight while we’re there?
Floyd Mayweather: Everything’s pretty much mapped out. They say what they want to say. Ricky’s being real smooth, and not trying to be nice, but we’re going to whip his ass, simple as that. We’re going to bust his ass up.
Q: All right. I just wondered if the relationship that you have with your dad played in any consideration when you decided to bring Floyd aboard, knowing the relationship that he had with his son?
Ricky Hatton: No, not necessarily. I just think a change was needed. And people were telling me that obviously, it’s not my former trainer’s fault, but trainers’ work is hard work. It was just a little bit of a harder decision for me to make, and obviously there were guys, because I’d been with Billy for so long. But the fact that I left Billy Graham, and I think everyone started to think that maybe I’d seen better days before the Malignaggi fight – to put the performance in I did after just seven weeks, I think shows that the right decision was made. I think people are used to me, that sight of Ricky Hatton, which they still get. And I’m aggressive but I’m also technical as well. You’ve seen the boxing side of Ricky Hatton now, and that’s going to stand me in good step. I’m being aggressive and defensive and technical at the same time now. So I showed improvement from the technical point of view in the last fight against Malignaggi, where I think we only just scratched the surface, me and Floyd. We’re doing fantastic in the first two weeks. I think with another eight weeks under our belt, we’ll be fine, to say the least.
Q: And as far as Manny being the pound for pound guy, he’s known as the consummate boxer, Ricky. What do you think you can bring to the ring that night to negate all the boxing skills that Manny Pacquiao has?
Ricky Hatton: Well, I strongly believe I would be as fast as Manny. And I think Floyd will probably agree with me, the way we’re started off in the first couple of weeks. If I’m not as fast as Manny, I will only be the narrowest of margins behind him. But my defense is a lot better, I’m picking up shots, I’m moving my head faster, I’m jabbing a bit more. And because Manny’s probably watching videos of Ricky Hatton, all the videos that he’s watching will be the old Ricky Hatton, and then when the new Ricky Hatton turns up, I think he’s going to get a shock. I think one thing that won’t shock him is my strength and my size, which I think obviously if he’s not preparing for it, he should be. But I think there’s a technical side, the defensive work and the speed is going to shock him more than anything.
Q: Thanks, Ricky. One thing I want to ask you, Floyd. As far as Floyd Jr.’s concerned, are you a little surprised that you’re now training one of his former nemesis?
Floyd Mayweather: Well, you know, like I said, that’s not a problem. Me and my son, we were at odds, and we’re pretty much still at odds. It’s not a big deal. I don’t have real gripes with my son, and we can get along that would be good. I would like that. But I’ve got to do what I got to do. And my business is training, and that’s what I do, and I do it better than anybody else.. And what you’re going to say about my son? Oh, well.
Q: Do you look at the relationship that Ricky has with his dad?
Floyd Mayweather: I’m not worried about Ricky and his dad. That’s a good thing that Ricky and his dad can get along. It would be good if me and my son can get along, but I’m not trying to compete with anybody about being good, because I did the right thing by my son. And if you doesn’t want to be a son, oh well. Because I’ve got too many other things to do. I’ve got to take care of myself and I have eight grandkids, so I’m not going to be worried about a grown man right now. I worry about the kids that are coming up. And I got to take care of me. You got to take care of yourself before you take care of anybody else. So that’s the way it is.
Q: Okay. I was just wanting your opinion as a boxing insider. Do you think Floyd, Jr.’s going to fight again?
Floyd Mayweather: Of course. There’s no question about it. He’s trying to find a fight right now, believe it or not. He’s trying to get a fight right now, as we speak. He’s going to fight again.
Q: Ricky, I just wanted to ask you about the negotiations before this fight deal got done. It seemed to be pretty emotional, and I never really heard how upset you were, or did you just chalk it up to boxing business as usual, or do you have some hard feelings that still lingering over, toward Manny?
Ricky Hatton: No, not at all. I mean, this is boxing. I don’t think I’ve known any – certainly at this level, I don’t think I know any two teams that have sat down and gone, yeah, okay, no problem.. It just doesn’t happen in boxing. But no, it’s just a case of negotiations going one way and then the other. And obviously Manny’s the pound for pound fighter, and I respect that. But Ricky Hatton brings all of those fans coming over to Las Vegas, the most popular fighter in the world. You’ve got to give a bit to take a bit and sometimes when you’re looking at it from that point of view, I’m bringing a lot of revenue to the fight, and Manny brings the best title in boxing to the fight. So I mean, obviously we’re going to both fight our cases, and the main thing is, two of the best pound for pound fighters are going to fight for the pound for pound title.
Q: Hey, Shane Mosley has said that he’s interested in fighting the winner of your fight. Is that a fight that you’d be ready to take on if you beat Manny?
Ricky Hatton: I’ll fight anybody. Yeah, if Shane can get down to 140.
Q: I just wanted to know, you said you worked with Floyd seven weeks for the Paulie fight. How much more have you learned and are you going to learn in this camp? In other words, did you learn it all the last camp, and how much more do you have to learn as far as all the technical stuff?
Ricky Hatton: Floyd’s a fantastic technician, really and the pads we do and the shadow boxing we do, we just spend all the time talking about what Manny might do and how we make him miss and how we slip punches in that are going to work and stuff like that. And I think the big key in this fight is we were together seven weeks out before the last fight, and you can imagine it takes at least three weeks, sometimes it takes more than seven weeks to get used to a new trainer. But the first three weeks, a lot of time was spent just getting on the right wavelength, getting in sync as far as pad work goes and getting to know each other personally. But you know Floyd came to Manchester last Friday. We did our first pad session on Monday, and it’s just like we just fell right back into the old routine type thing. So we’re starting from a higher plain again, aren’t we? We’ve got two weeks longer together for this fight than we did for the last fight, and obviously we don’t need to spend any more time getting used to each other. We can go straight to work.
Q: Good. And Floyd, could you elaborate on why you think Ricky is going to dominate the fight?
Floyd Mayweather: Well, I think Ricky’s going to dominate the fight, because first of all because I got the best fighter, and because I’m the best trainer. That’s the reason right there. That’s what is going to solve everything. I’m the best, he’s the best.
Q: Okay. And I want to ask you the same question I asked Ricky. How much more are you teaching him in this camp than in the previous camp?
Floyd Mayweather: Well, Ricky got right back into things right now. Ricky knows more about what I want. I’m going to be honest with you, tell you the truth – I thought Ricky was going to be a hard guy to train.. Ricky is one of the easiest guys in the world to train. So that makes it very easy for me, and it makes it hard for Pacman. So I’m just telling you that, that’s the way it is. Ricky is a very easy guy to train. He’s a thinker, and there’s a lot of things that I do, and Ricky is surprising me at times. So I’m pretty sure he will surprise Pacquiao. There’s going to be no problem. He’s an A-1 student.
Q: And one last question, Floyd. I just want to get your thoughts on the Oscar fight. Were you surprised at how Pacquiao dominated that fight?
Floyd Mayweather: Well, let me say this right here. I was surprised, but I wasn’t surprised to a degree, because I already know what happened, believe me. I know what happened. It had nothing to do with Pacquiao just beating Oscar, because ain’t no way Pacquiao beat Oscar. He did it then, which I saw, but he beat a dehydrated Oscar De La Hoya, he didn’t beat the real De La Hoya. He fought a man that was dehydrated. You look at that fight over again, you’ll see Oscar almost fell over his own feet. So that doesn’t excite me. When he (Pacquiao) gets ready to fight Ricky, he will see that Oscar was at 147 Ricky is going to be at 140, seven pounds under that or many more than that by the time of the fight. But whatever the case may be, however you want to put it, and you’re going to see what’s going to happen. Don’t tell me that the weight doesn’t have anything to do with it. Oscar hadn’t made that weight in 12 years they say. I don’t remember, but I know I trained Oscar for at least seven and a half years, so he’d been away from that weight for quite a while. So I don’t think, I know that he was dehydrated. He was overtrained and not only that, I just know Oscar’s a much better fighter than that, much better. And if I would have run that camp, it still would have been much different. That man got whooped that night. But I wasn’t there, I didn’t run it, so what it is is what it is.
Q: Ricky, question is the way you’re talking, are we more prone, are we more likely to see the guy who when you beat Kostya Tszyu, which was more of a boxer, that we haven’t seen much of since that point, is that kind of the Ricky Hatton that we’re probably going to see for this fight against Pacquiao?
Ricky Hatton: I think I’m going to be as aggressive and ferocious, but I’m going to do it with a lot more jabs I should say, a good luck jab. I’ve seen Manny get dropped by a jab. I can tell my jab’s working really, really good now with Floyd. And to be honest probably with the southpaw being nearer to you, I set my jabs to work. My jabs are solid jabs. And obviously my hand speed, I think my hand speed is improved. I think I’ve laid off the weight training. I think it showed in the Malignaggi fight that my hand speed really improved. I think my hand speed has even improved since then. So come fight night, I hope to be as fast as Manny.
Q What is the greatest weakness you see in Pacquiao? What makes you think that you’re going to definitely beat him, about his style?
Ricky Hatton: I think I’ve got to be careful, because he shuffles in and out with his feet and he tries to outbox you on some punches. So you’ve got to be clever and not fall for the trap, if you like. But I think Manny, because he’s so aggressive, he sometimes gambles with every punch. He puts everything he’s got into that left cross and he drills the whole right back. I think if you can make him miss, I think sometimes he puts that much into his punch. I think if you can make him miss, he’s very open and he’s off balance, and along with my head move and my hand speed, my footwork and everything will work. And now, if he misses, he’s going to have some big shots waiting for him. And also, I’m going to be the biggest man that he’s ever fought. He fought Oscar De La Hoya, but Oscar was 147. I’ll be in the ring at 154. And in the past, he’s been put down several times with body shots, he’s been shaken up to the head. He’s the pound for pound best fighter in the world. If you look at it from that point of view and you’re asking me why I think I’ll win the fight, obviously those are the reasons.
Q: Floyd, you said that your guy’s going to win because he’s the best fighter and you’re the better trainer. If he doesn’t win, does that mean that Freddie Roach is the best trainer?
Floyd Mayweather: Trust me, Freddie is a joke Coach Roach wouldn’t care to approach. Believe me, you will find that out.
Q: If your guy doesn’t win, he’s a better trainer based on your logic. Just curious.
Floyd Mayweather: Hey, you know something, I would have to accept what happened, but I’m going to tell you right now. It isn’t going to happen from me. If Ricky does his job and does what he’s supposed to do, I know what’s going to happen already. And I know Ricky is going to do his job. So I’m just pretty telling you what it is, and what it is, is what it is.
Q: Are you calling this a knockout?
Floyd Mayweather: I’m going to be honest with you. I think Ricky has a very very good chance of knocking him out. We are going to beat him however it goes, but I think a knock out is going to be more likely than anything. Ricky’s chance is very great at that. This ain’t no dehydrated Oscar De La Hoya he’s fighting with now. He’s fighting with a man that’s got real strength, a guy that can keeps pressure on him, smart pressure, head movement, jabbing on the way in, moving the head, hitting through the body, banging through the body, banging through the head and smothering him at the same time. It’s hard to deal with.
Q: Richard, I spoke with Ricky by telephone on Monday, and I asked him about what he expects the atmosphere to be like that night of the fight when you consider that for his fight with Mayweather some 35,000 Brits came across the pond, even only about 5,000 or so got tickets. And then of course, with Manny’s equally fanatical Filipino following, what do you expect the atmosphere to be like in Vegas as well in the arena that night?
Richard Schaefer: Well, I think it’s going to be a huge super fight kind of atmosphere, and I can tell you based on early ticket reports, I would expect the Brits to outnumber the Filipinos at least 2 to 1. So Ricky has to really have the most loyal fan base in the world. There is no other fighter who has that kind of fan base. You know, even Oscar, who has the huge fan base here in the U.S., when you compare what Ricky brings to the table, it even is bigger than that. So it will be an amazing night. An amazing night in Vegas.
Q: This question first is for Ricky. Ricky, are you more or less or equally confident going into your fight against Manny as you were going into your fight against Floyd?
Ricky Hatton: Yeah. I mean, in the against Floyd, I really genuinely did think I was going to win, even though my previous fight I was at 147 against Carazo, I think the actual seven pounds showed that it was manufactured weight, not natural. And it wasn’t a natural weight. But I did genuinely did think I was going to beat Floyd. But I was boxing a lot differently then from how I’m boxing now. And never remind just the weight distance, which is a big enough thing alone, if you look at that fight, I think I made it easy for Floyd that night. I mean, he did what nobody else did to Ricky Hatton. But again this day I think I played right into his hands. I mean, I wasn’t jabbing, I wasn’t moving my head, I was just steaming in there. And that’s what I have cut out from my game now.
So I would say as far as my natural weight, I’m 140 pounds. I’m still as aggressive, I’m still as strong, I’m even faster. I have a defensive jab. So obviously I’m going to be more confident in this fight, I am at my natural weight. And I think – my previous few fights with Castillo, Floyd Mayweather, I think I’ve forgotten the technical ability. And I have always had technical ability, but I think I’ve just lost it in recent fights. And I’ve got it back now, so yeah, I’m probably more confident for this fight.
Q: All right, excellent. Floyd, Sr., can you say explicitly, do you regard right now Freddie Roach as the second best trainer in the world, so indeed this is…
Floyd Mayweather: No, man, I don’t do that at all.
Q: This is the face also of the top pound for pound trainers?
Floyd Mayweather: No man, I’ll be honest with you, thats a bunch of nonsense. They’ve got him in the Hall of Fame. He should be in the Hall of Shame. Let’s tell the truth like it is, you see Freddie Roach training, you see me training, it is night and day. Don’t even compare, don’t even come close. I mean, let’s be for real. Tell the truth. Freddie Roach is a joke. And that’s what I say, that’s why his name is, Freddie the joke Coach Roach, as far as I’m concerned.
Q: Hey, Ricky. You’ve only fought twice since the Mayweather fight, which was pretty much a disaster, a pretty bad loss. Do you feel fortunate to be in this position again, fighting for the pound for pound title, only two fights later?
Ricky Hatton: No, not really. I obviously am as I keep saying, I challenged Mayweather at 147, and so to be honest, after the fight against Carazo, my first fight at 147 which was obviously a real struggle, actually seven pounds made a massive difference. You know, to be honest, that should be the warning signs saying Ricky, that weight is not for you. Stay at junior welterweight. Well, I got the opportunity to fight Floyd for the best pound for pound title. And after getting a fantastic opportunity to fight for the pound for pound title, that being just seven pounds up. If I didn’t take the opportunity I’d look at myself as a bit of a fraud. I tell everybody I want to fight the best, I want to challenge the best. And if I was going to tout away the opportunity of fighting the best pound for pound fighter, because the Carazo fight didn’t exactly go smooth. I think I would be a bit of a fraud. I come back the first fight back from your first defeat, a knockout defeat, I think can always be the hardest. You’ve got all the demons to compete with, and I’ve got that out the way. And then against Paulie Malignaggi, who don’t forget was a world champion in his own right. It was my nearest rival. If I was ranked No. 1, he was ranked No. 2. If Ricky Hatton is not in a position to fight Manny Pacquiao, tell me another fighter who is. I think in the manner in which I beat Paulie Malignaggi, I think a lot of people expected Paulie to beat me. And I outboxed him. I think I outspeeded him, and then eventually I made him quit for the first time. So I do, I’d like to think that I do deserve it. If it wasn’t Ricky Hatton, who was going to fight Manny Pacquiao? Maybe Marquez , because obviously Marquez wants to move it through the weights and he’s looking very, very impressive all the time. But I think there’s only so many opponents that Manny can fight at that weight. If you can tell me someone else, I’d love to know.
Q: So you never really doubted yourself seriously after the Mayweather fight?
Ricky Hatton: Not so much after the Mayweather fight, because I knew I was fighting the pound for pound best, and I also knew I was up at 147. So I didn’t doubt myself out, so I think my performance again with Juan Lescano was pretty crap, to be honest with you. And I started believing what all these people were saying, that maybe I’ve had too many hard fights, up and down in weight, finally caught up with me. But I think the main problem was I needed to change my training camp. I think I made it too easy for Floyd because I was going in there obviously like a chicken with no head. I wasn’t thinking about what I was doing. And it was too many of my performances that were a little bit 200-mile-an-hour and I wasn’t thinking technically about what I was doing. I mean, the Carazo fight, I just tried to bully through him. The Castillo fight I tried to bully through him. I obviously did in the end, but then the Mayweather fight. I think Ricky Hatton was becoming too easy to read, and I needed to make the decision for my training camp. And I think my last performance against Malignaggi, when you think I outboxed the boxer and outspeeded the speed merchant, I think just shows you that Ricky Hatton, where maybe doubts had started to creep into my head, I certainly pushed them to the side with my last performance. And I expect to be even better with my new training camp with my new team.
Richard Schaefer: Well, I think that was an excellent call, very good insights. Thank you, Ricky. Thank you, Floyd, and thank you to the writers. Remember, May 2nd will be a great showdown. And just remember that at 140 pounds, Ricky Hatton is and will continue to be undefeated.
END OF CALL
Pacquiao vs. Hatton “The Battle of East and West,” presented by Rockstar Energy Drink and promoted by Top Rank and Golden Boy Promotions, in association with MP Promotions and Hatton Promotions is a 12-round bout for Hatton’s IBO and Ring Magazine World Junior Welterweight titles. The fight is also sponsored by Cerveza Tecate and Southwest Airlines. Remaining tickets, priced at $1,000, $750, $500, $300 and $150, can be purchased through Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000 or www.ticketmaster.com. Tickets are also available online at www.mgmgrand.com
The Pacquiao vs. Hatton pay-per-view telecast, beginning at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT, has a suggested retail price of $49.95, will be produced and distributed by HBO Pay-Per-View and will be available to more than 71 million pay-per-view homes. The telecast will be available in HD-TV for those viewers who can receive HD. HBO Pay-Per-View is the leading supplier of event programming to the pay-per-view industry. For Pacquiao vs. Hatton fight week updates, log on to www.hbo.com.
Please visit www.goldenboypromotions.com, www.toprank.com or www.rickyhitmanhatton.com for upcoming announcements..