By: Bryant Romero
Talented young prospect John Bauza is very confident he is the next exciting young fighter to come out of Puerto Rico. With the recent retirement of Miguel Cotto, the island is searching for the next big talent that has the potential to become a star in the U.S. with the ability to fill out arenas in the east coast during the most important days of Puerto Rican boxing, which is during the Puerto Rican day Parade festivities every June. There is now only 1 current world champion from the Island, but John Bauza (9-0, 5 KOs) disagrees with the concern the boxing fans have with the current state of Puerto Rican boxing.
“There’s a lot talent coming out of Puerto Rico, but some of them (fighters) still have that old style,” Bauza said.
Photo Credit: John Bauza Twitter Account
“Everyday boxing change and a lot of Puerto Ricans still have the old style. There are a lot of good fighters and there are still a lot of them that still have that old school style.
“But I’m one of the best prospects to come out of Puerto Rico,” he told me.
The 20-year-old from Puerto Rico who now resides in North Bergen, New Jersey, always knew since he was a child that he would become a professional prize fighter.
“I always wanted to do it. I wanted to turn professional since I was 15,” Bauza said. “But here in the United States you can’t be a professional until you’re 18, but I was ready to go since I was 15, 16 already,” he told me.
John was first influenced to box by his father Juan Bauza who himself was an amateur boxer during his younger days. John would go on to have a successful amateur career, winning many accolades and becoming the No.1 ranked amateur boxer at 141 pounds in the United States.
Now that he’s two years into his professional career, I asked how would he describe his boxing style to the fans that have yet to see him and what has been the biggest difference between the amateurs and the professionals?
“My style comes from a bunch of different fighters. I like Roy Jones, I like Mayweather. I have a style that’s mixed from a bunch of different boxers.
“The biggest difference is that in the amateurs I used to fight more aggressive and throw more punches because that’s the amateur style,” Bauza explained. “But when you go pro, you have to be more patient and have a more relaxed fight because there are more rounds.”
Bauza is currently signed to Roc Nation sports as he returns to the ring this Friday at the Birchwood Manor in Whippany, New Jersey where he will take on Hugo Padilla (5-13, 2 KOs) of Mexico. John is a fighter that likes to study his opponents and he’s very well aware of what Padilla will bring to the table come fight night.
“I’m looking to box him because he’s a fighter that comes forward all the time and he also a tough fighter,” Bauza said.
“He’s not a fighter you’re going to hit and he loses focus. The Mexicans they come to fight, they go to war, so I’m looking to just box him because I know he just comes forward and he just wanna fight.
“So I’m just going to box him. If I can get the knockout, I get the knockout, but I’m just looking to win and outbox him,” he said.
If all goes well this Friday in Whippany, Bauza sees himself knocking on the championship door much sooner rather than later and he also has the ambition to not only become a world champion, but to pick up straps in multiple divisions.
“I see myself as champion in maybe a year or year in a half,” he said. “My manager tells me that I have to learn a couple of more things. Be more patient, I just turned 20 in April and he just told me to wait a little more so I can get more experience.
“I’m looking to be a champion in maybe 4 or 5 divisions,” Bauza said.
You can contact and follow Bryant Romero on Twitter @BoxingTruth88