Boxing


Devin Vargas - "Kevin Johnson Will Not Be Able To Match My Punch Output"

vargasExclusiv interview by James Slater - This coming Friday night, unbeaten young heavyweights Devin Vargas and Kevin Johnson will collide in a fight that will go out live on ESPN2. Originally scheduled to fight Monte Barret and Bruce Seldon respectively, Johnson and Vargas now meet one another in a most intriguing bout.

Extremely confident the so called step up in class is a winnable fight for him, 27-year-old former Olympian Vargas, 17-0(7) feels the bout presents his opponent with his toughest fight yet - and one that "KingPin" will lose. Kindly taking time out to speak with me earlier today, Devin had the following answers to my questions:

James Slater: It's great to speak with you, Devin. You were training for Bruce Seldon originally and then landed the Johnson fight?

Devin Vargas: Yes. I was originally training for Bruce and they asked me on Tuesday if I wanted to step up and take the fight with Johnson - I said sure..

J.S: Your both unbeaten heavyweights, you feel you are ready to take what they are calling a step up in class for you?

D.V: Yeah, I think I have the advantage actually. I have way more experience than him. I think he only had around 20 amateur fights, whereas I had 250 and fought all over the world and in the Olympics. I feel I have the upper hand with my experience. I've fought far better class fighters than Johnson ever has.

J.S: You're both promoted by Star Boxing, do you know Kevin, have you sparred with him?

D.V: We fought on the same card one time. I watched him fight. He has a good left jab but that's pretty much it - he'll need a lot more than that against me.

J.S: Have you been watching tapes of him, now that you're fighting him?

D.V: I've seen him on the internet. He's pretty much the same every time he fights. He holds his left hand low and he leans back. He's quite one dimensional, really. I think this will be even easier for me than I think myself. He's like an amateur. He's not faced a fighter like me before, who throws a hundred punches a round.

J.S: As I said, they're calling this a step up for you, but it's also just as much a step up for him you think?

D.V: It's more of a step up for him, I think. Like I say, I've met all different styles of fighters, all good talented fighters - this experience of mine will show in the fight. He's in over his head in this fight.

J.S: What type of fight do you expect?

D.V: I never really go in with a game-plan - I see what's the best approach to take when I get in there. I'll figure out which style to use in the first round. If I have to box I can box, if I have to bang I can bang. One thing I will do, though, is pick the pace up right away and throw lots of punches and make him work. He can't keep up with me with my work-rate. If he tries to, he'll be tired by the 5th or 6th round. I expect an exciting fight, at least it will be on my part. I'm never in a boring fight, I get bored myself! The rest [with regards to making the fight exciting] is up to him.

J.S: Johnson's a great talker, and some say he's arrogant. You're a more low key, do-your-talking-in-the-ring, type of guy, aren't you?

D.V: Yes. A lot of time, the guys who talk a lot are doing it because they're afraid. Also, Johnson's a boring fighter, so he has to talk to make himself more marketable. I don't feel I need to talk like that. He's not said anything about me yet, but he probably will at the weigh-in. He'll have nothing to say after I beat him and get my hand raised, though.

J.S: You had a ten month layoff from May of last year until this March. Why was that?

D.V: Me and my promoter were not really seeing things eye to eye. He offered me nine fights, though, but none of the nine wanted to take the fight. When I win this fight on Friday, I will be my promoter's top name heavyweight and hopefully things will happen for me. But during that ten month layoff I was in the gym every day. I took about a week-and-a-half off, that's all. I'm always in the gym.

J.S: Do you feel you are at your peak at age 27, or approaching it?


D.V: I feel I'm approaching it. I've picked up a lot of tricks from fighting all different styles of fighters. I train hard and I punch a lot in fights. No big men can keep up with my punch output. I look up to guys like Pacquiao and Calzaghe - people with real high punch outputs. I'll make it that kind of fight against Johnson, and in doing that I can't lose.

J.S: Do you see a distance fight on Friday?

D.V: Yes, I see a points win. He's a survivor. He's not going to put himself in danger once he feels my power. He'll hold and look to survive. I do expect all ten rounds. But if I catch him right.....!

J.S: What are you hoping a win will lead to for you?

D.V: Hopefully, it will lead me one step closer to my dream fight, which is against Chris Arreola. I know every heavyweight in the U.S wants that fight. I don't just want it for the money, I think that fight will be what the heavyweight division needs. I think it would be a great fight between two guys who like to bang. That fight would be fought at a middleweight pace.

J.S: Do you feel you will be ready for a world title shot this year?

D.V: Yes. I'm ready for anything. If I got six to eight weeks to prepare properly, I would be ready for anyone. Most of my fights, I've only got the call two weeks or so before the fight. With a proper camp, I'd love a shot at the Klitschkos. I don't think they've seen a fighter like me yet. Why box a guy who's 6'7"? (laughs). You have to get on their chest and work. I know that's easier said than done, but I look at what [Lamon] Brewster did against Wladimir. He tired him out and the big guy couldn't last. The real big guys can't go at a fast pace.

J.S: You're hoping for a real big 2009 then?

D.V: That's what I'm hoping for, yes. After this win I want to move forward. I have a big family to support (laughs). I have four sons, and I want to provide for them and make sure they live a good life. Most fighters are fighting for that reason.

J.S: Well, best wishes for Friday, and thanks for taking the time to talk with me.

D.V: Thank you.

Article posted on 10.05.2009



Bookmark and Share


previous article: UK Boxing: Buckland vs. Lawton; Scott Lawton; Darren Sutherland

next article: Rivera Decisions Baba; Upshaw Drops Gibbs; Veto outpoints Romankiewicz!










If you detect any issues with the legality of this site, problems are always unintentional and will be corrected with notification.
The views and opinions of all writers expressed on Boxing247.com do not necessarily state or reflect those of the Management.
Copyright © 2001- 2015 Boxing247.com - Privacy Policy l Contact