Boxing

Juan Diaz Conference Call Transcript

K. Swanson: Thank you, everybody, for calling in. We have another exciting conference call today featuring one of our main event fighters, Juan Diaz, former Three-Time Lightweight World Champion. Also joining him is Ronnie Shields, who is his trainer, and Richard Schaefer, Chief Executive Officer of Golden Boy Promotions.

Before I turn it over to Richard, I do want to say Iíve been in boxing a long time and Iíve worked with a lot of fighters and personally, I am so impressed with Juan Diazís story. Itís an honor, actually, to be participating and helping to tell it. Itís a wonderful opportunity to hear a story about how a fighter is going to make it whether heís in or out of the ring..

He, as you all know, is studying to be a lawyer. He has his own construction company and he wrote a wonderful Op-Ed piece that was featured in The Houston Chronicle for the July 4 weekend sharing his thoughts on his dreams coming true as a son of Mexican immigrants. Juan, Iím very impressed with you and I wish you all of the best. Before we introduce him, Iím going to turn it over to Richard Schaefer, Chief Executive Officer of Golden Boy Promotions, to tell us more about the fight. Richard.

R. Schaefer:
Thank you, Kelly. You stole all of the thunder. I agree. What an amazing young man. Juan is 26-years young. He has been a Three-Time World Champion already and has accomplished so much inside the ring, but at the same time; I agree with you, Kelly; an amazing story and has accomplished so much outside of the ring.

The first fight between Marquez and Diaz, as we all know, was voted by pretty much everyone from Ring Magazine to the ESPN to the Boxing Writers Association as the Fight of the Year. By the way, that fight of the year will have some replay as well. I want to announce that quickly. HBO Sports is going to replay on Friday, July 16 at 7:15 p.m., on Friday, July 23 at midnight, and Saturday, July 24 at 10:45 in the morning Eastern and Pacific times. It is available as well 24 hours a day starting Monday, July 19 on HBO On-Demand for those who want to take a look at that again and I urge you as well to check out HBO.com, which has an online link to Marquez-Diaz I fight as well and an amazing piece about Marquezís greatest hits and Diazís greatest hits all in a very high quality environment, so really great coverage there from HBO. For those of you who want to see it again, there are different outlets where you can see that first fight again.

The fight will be July 31 at the Mandalay Bay, promoted by Golden Boy and Marquez Promotions, sponsored by Cerveza Tecate and AT&T and, as we all know, live from HBO Pay-Per-View at 9 p.m. Eastern, 6 p.m. Pacific. Tickets are on sale and for as little as $50, you can witness the rematch of this great Fight of the Year for $50, $100, $150, $250 and the top price, $350. Great room rates are available in Las Vegas as well, so I urge everyone to make it a great weekend in Vegas.

The fight will be shown in 270 select movie theaters nationwide and the entire card will be shown. We talked last week and weíll have in the coming weeks more conference calls about the undercard, which is, as we call it, the best undercard in many years, really an amazing lineup of fighters, which will lead up to the rematch between Marquez and Diaz.

Before I turn it over to Juan Diaz, it is a pleasure for me to introduce to you Juan Diazís long-time trainer, who has worked with many world champions during his career. I believe he has worked with Juan Diaz for 30 fights so he knows Juan very well. He knows what kinds of adjustments need to be made to bring home the victory. Itís a pleasure for me to introduce to you one of the best trainers in the business today and that is, of course, Ronnie Shields.

Ronnie, if you want to give us some thoughts on how training camp went, please do so.

R. Shields:
Thank you, Richard. Itís a pleasure for me to be on this conference call with Juan. Juan is in great condition. Our training camp has gone really well. As you all know, Juan got knocked out in the fight with Marquez, but it was such a great fight and it is very warranted that these two guys are fighting again. Juan always trains hard, so we had to make some adjustments and thatís exactly what weíre doing right now, making plenty of adjustments.

Juan is really listening to everything weíre doing in the gym. His condition is great and weíre looking forward to the fight on July 31. We know every one of you all are looking forward to it also, because it was the Fight of the Year and trust me, the second one is probably going to be the Fight of the Year, so I think everybody should tune in and basically thatís all I have to say right now.

R. Schaefer:
As I said before, Juan Diaz is only 26-years young and has been already a Three-Time World Lightweight Champion and Lightweight is really the weight where he is at his best. After going one-on-one with Malignaggi he decided to go back to Lightweight. He defeated Australian warrior Michael Katsidis in that weight class as well and when you look at the last fight, the first fight and I asked actually for a copy of the scorecards, you see that Duane Ford had Marquez ahead, 77-75. Max DeLuca had Juan Diaz ahead after the eighth round, 75-77. Lenny Martinez had it at a draw, 76-76. So going into that ninth round it was a dead even fight.

Many ring-side observers felt that Juan Diaz was beating Marquez to the punch and made Marquez look old. Marquez made the necessary adjustments and then obviously landed the big punch, which marked the end to the first fight. So here you have a young fighter with Juan Diaz, who has learned from that fight. I think he was becoming a bit too confident in the fight and I think he knows what adjustments he needs to make. He knows as well how important a victory here is and what it could lead to.

I know he is a very smart guy outside the ring. He just graduated from the University of Houston, Texas in 2009. Heís on his way to become a lawyer, so I know heís a very smart guy outside the ring and I know heís a very smart guy inside the ring as well and he will make the necessary adjustments and he is coming July 31 to win, to win big against the legendary Juan Manuel Marquez.

It is a pleasure, as Kelly Swanson said before, to introduce to you a man you all know and who really is just an amazing person in and outside of the ring. Thatís the Baby Bull, Juan Diaz. Juan.

J. Diaz:
Thank you, Richard, and thank you, Kelly, for those great words. Iím very excited and very grateful. I thank God for giving me the opportunity to fight once again against such a great fighter like Juan Manuel Marquez. I didnít think this fight was going to happen after my two fights with Malignaggi, but here I am and Iím very grateful that Golden Boy and HBO have given me this opportunity to come back in such a great fight like this, especially being the showcase fight of the night for July 31. I even feel more grateful and Iím excited and Iím happy because this last year, if we can count from last February to now, has been a rollercoaster ride for me. Itís been up and down types of situations for me. I lost against Marquez. I won the first fight against Malignaggi, then lost again on the rematch. So itís been a rollercoaster ride and Iím very fortunate to be here.

With that said, Iím taking full advantage of this situation and Iím training my butt off every day, day-in and day-out. Iíve been in training camp for eight weeks now. Saturday will be two left before the big fight, so Iím going to end up with a ten-week training camp. In the past weeks it was taking its toll, but now that I can see the light at the end of the tunnel my motivation and enthusiasm has picked up and even my sparring partners are feeling it.

Q:
Juan, could you just talk a little bit about the types of things that you need to do differently in the rematch? Because, as Richard was talking about in his introduction, it was a very close fight until, obviously, the end when you were stopped. So can you talk about what you need to do differently or how you think the fight can turn out differently?

J. Diaz:
Well, I know that the game plan that I had in the first fight was working. Obviously, it was a really close fight, but I think I had the edge over Marquez. The only things that I deviated from in the late rounds were when Ronnie was telling me to apply the same amount of pressure, but the only difference was that, yes, I was applying the pressure, but leaving myself wide open and exposed to his upper cuts.

He was hitting me. He was landing with some good upper cuts and I kept falling in and falling in with the jab and with the upper cuts. I mean he kept landing those upper cuts and Ronnie kept telling me, ďStay in your box. Stay in your box,Ē but I was stubborn and just kept pushing forward and squaring up and falling in, which led to me being stopped.

Q:
Ronnie, can you address that also, about what youíre, I guess, preaching the same thing to him that you were saying to him in the fight that he didnít follow as you come into this rematch, the same things youíve been preaching to him?

R. Shields:
Yes. Absolutely. I think our game plan is going to be similar to what we followed last time. We made some minor adjustments. I mean Juan is a valiant puncher, so we have to play off of that, but I think we have to do it in a way that benefits Juan. Definitely, Iím not going to say how weíre going to do that, but I think we definitely have to benefit and use his boxing skills also.

Juan is a really good boxer and thatís what got him to being Champion of the world from the beginning, being able to beat all of the guys heís beaten before. But with Marquez, this guy is such a smart guy. I mean heís not going to be a Hall of Fame guy for nothing, because heís been in there with the best. Heís beaten the best, so we have to outsmart him and I think Juan has the capabilities to do that.

But in the first fight, yes, I told him we needed to keep the pressure on, but we needed to basically just to jab and he started falling in with it and he got caught and we paid for it. So now thatís really one thing that weíre really working on a lot is keeping him to where he doesnít fall in the punches so he canít get hit with those upper cuts. We know Marquez basically is probably going to fight the same kind of fight that he fought and let Juan dictate everything, but we have a few surprises for him also.

Q:
Both of you guys actually, do you think that maybe Juan, as great of a fighter as he is, heís into his later 30s now and Juan is still a very young man; I think 26; that maybe Marquez is a little bit slowed down since that fight because the fight was so tough to begin with and on top of that, his next fight after that was against Floyd Mayweather, where he lost essentially every single round and got knocked down. I know he was fighting at a heavier weight, but all of those things combined, plus the age, that maybe he wonít be as on the way he was in that first fight?

R. Shields:
Well, I donít know. Itís kind of hard to tell, but yes, I mean I think Juan took a lot out of him. Although we lost the fight I think Juan really helped himself by the way he pushed the first fight. Also, he looked so slow against Floyd Mayweather, but who doesnít? Floyd is such a great fighter he just dominated the fight, but I mean time will tell. We canít chance anything. We have to fight our fight and not fall into the hands of Marquez.

Q:
The fight was the Fight of the Year, so it was one of the memorable fights of recent years. The fans seemed to love it. The Toyota Center was packed and going crazy. Everybody seemed to really have a good time and you got the Fight of the Year Award, but on the other hand, you lost the fight. So is there a little bit of a mixed emotion in the sense that, hey, Iím glad that we put on the Fight of the Year. I got my trophy from the Boxing Writers and everybody is going to remember this fight forever; but on the other hand, I got an L on my record and a knockout?

J. Diaz:
Yes. It definitely makes emotions on one part. Iím very happy that I was able to be in one of those fights. That had always been my dream, to be in one of those all-out wars, but obviously, in my dream the outcome wasnít the outcome that happened in 2009. I was the winner.

But all in all, I think that it was a win-win situation. It exposed me to something I had never experienced before. I had never been stopped in my career. I had never really been hurt like I was hurt in that fight, so now Iíve experienced that. I had never been in such a big fight with so many people and just the atmosphere was just amazing, which now I have that experience and now I can go into the fight relaxed, as I have done in my previous fights.

Q:
Juan, you mentioned that if we go back to last February, meaning February 2009, itís been a rollercoaster ride, but really, if you went back to a little bit before that you were fighting Nate Campbell March of í08. For that fight you had started, I believe, 33-0 and now youíre 35-3, so you lost 3 out of your past 5. Iím not saying that to rub it in or anything like that, but what Iím wondering is Richard also mentioned in his introduction that you know how important this fight is.

How important is this fight to your career as far as winning? When you think about it, is it a do or die fight if you want people to still consider you a world-class guy and a title contender and that whole thing, a lead fighter?

J. Diaz:
Yes. Definitely. I definitely do. I see this as a win-win situation for me, because this fight is going to prove to me whether I have it or I donít. This fight right here is whatís going to take me to the top and make me the super star that Iíve been wanting to be in the Lightweight division, but if it doesnít happen then that means itís not meant to be and Iíll move on to bigger and better things, which could be start from the bottom and pick up the pieces to rebuild myself up or just completely do a 360 Ė I mean a 180 Ė and just go in the opposite direction.

This fight here, a lot of people have been mentioning to me that itís a do or die fight. Well, I donít think it is a do or die fight. I think itís a win-win situation because either I become a world champion once again and become a super star or it opens up doors for me to do other things and focus on other aspects of my life.

Q:
So when you say open the door to other things, are you talking about maybe retirement and going into law practice, that kind of thing?

J. Diaz:
Thatís possible. Itís very possible. Iím not going to close any doors because Iím still a young fighter. Iím 26-years-old. If my plan is to continue fighting after this fight then thatís exactly what Iím going to do. If itís not the best decision when I sit down and talk to my family and my managers and my promoter, if thatís not the best thing to do then Iím not going to be stubborn. Iím smart enough, like Richard said, I have a college degree; Iím smart enough to know that Iím not going to be chasing a dream thatís not going to come true again. I know when itís time to go and I know when itís time to stop.

Q:
Juan, you fought Malignaggi at 140 and now youíre back down to 135. How significant was the difference in weight for you and how much more comfortable are you at 135?

J. Diaz:
Oh, Iím 10 times more comfortable at 135 because at 140, the last fight we fought I came in weighing 139 and then the night of the fight I stepped on the scales and that was with my shoes and my pants on and I was weighing 143. So that goes to show you that I donít gain too much weight and now, even right now, like today, I left the gym weighing 138 pounds because itís so hot and humid down here in Houston. Iím sweating a lot and itís just natural.

Iím eating healthy. Iím eating the right foods. Iím eating four times a day and thatís without even dieting, without even trying to, so by the time fight night comes around this time around, the day of the win Iím going to weigh 135 and fight night Iím going to be weighing about 142, 143, which will be 7 to 8 pounds that Iím going to gain.

Now, fighting at 140, thatís only 2 or 3 pounds that I gain, so do you see the difference here? By fighting Lightweight I gain seven to eight pounds and you can tell that Iím a pretty big guy. I donít mean height wise, but at least my body, Iím a pretty solid 135. At 140 Iím not that solid.

Q:
Ronnie, let me ask you the same question. When you were looking at Juan in the Malignaggi fight did you see a slower Juan or did you see the weight affecting him as well? Because you did take the rematch and he did look a little bit slower, so was it a conscious effort to say, ďYou know what? Itís a lot better for us to go back down to 135?Ē

R. Shields:
Yes. Absolutely. I thought I didnít like the fight at 140. I thought Juan won the first fight. The first fight was the same thing. He was walking around at the start of training camp at 143 and thatís at the beginning. To try to make 139.25, I think was the weight difference, so we know we didnít have no problem. I mean he was coming out at the training sessions, coming out 139, so it didnít benefit us and it donít benefit us to fight at 140.

It benefits us to fight at 135, but Juan is a bigger guy at 135. Heís stronger at 135 than he is at 140 because the guys are bigger. I know Malignaggi, he weighed, I think, like 152 pounds after the weigh-ins, so he gained about 13 pounds. Juan only gained three. That was a big difference. Malignaggi was used to fighting at that weight, at 140 and fighting at 150 to 152, but Juan wasnít.

Of course, Paulie is a really good boxer. We canít take away the victory that Paulie got because he fought well and he really boxed well, but I think Juanís natural weight is 135 pounds and I think youíre going to see him a lot stronger in this fight than you did in his last two.

Q:
Juan, you mentioned that Marquez is a pretty intelligent fighter. What is it that he does inside the ring that makes him so different or so smart?

J. Diaz:
What makes him so different from a lot of guys is that a lot of guys when they go in there and fight theyíre thinking about landing punches, just landing punches, throwing and landing the punches. What Marquez does very well is that he thinks every second of the fight. You throw a punch and you might hit them with that one punch, but the next time around youíre not going to hit them with that punch or youíre going to get hit with two or three of his punches. So thatís what makes him so great in the ring is that heís a great counter puncher. You throw two or three punches and if you donít throw them right heís going to find an opening and crack you with his punches.

Q:
Did he make any adjustments with his stance or any little movements that kind of threw you off?

J. Diaz:
No, not necessarily. I think what really helped him out was the fact that I made so many mistakes in the later rounds. Like I said earlier, I was falling in. He has great tendency to throw great upper cuts and what better way to help him out than for me to be leaning over and giving him those free open shots? So I think it wasnít so much what he did, because if you go back and see his fights, he always has the same style. He always fights the same fight. Now, the only difference is that when you make those mistakes, whenever you make mistakes thatís when he capitalizes on the mistakes you make, the fighter makes, his opponent.

Q:
Did you ever fight a fighter in that same kind of a mentality, somebody who kind of took advantage of things like that or does anybody else even compare?

J. Diaz:
Yes. There are a few fighters that I fought coming up as an undefeated guy. One of those guys that I fought early on was Ubaldo Hernandez, which was a guy from Mexico City, who didnít have a lot of talent. He was one of those what you call, so called, journey men that go and fight one week and then the next week heís fighting another undefeated, up and coming super star. But those journeymen are the guys that are actually the toughest ones to beat because they know that they canít get hurt. They know that they have to do enough to make the fight interesting, but not get hurt. So those guys are real elusive and very smart when it comes to being in the ring.

Q:
Juan, going back to some comments that you said earlier, just about how this fight, if you lose, it could open some doors leading to other ventures and other aspects of life. Some people have already mentioned this; that a lot of boxers arenít like that. Itís either boxing or nothing. So whatís kind of been different for you and why have you consciously kind of created another life for yourself? Is that a lesson that you learned from somebody else or is that something that just came to you?

J. Diaz:
Well, I think thatís a product of being surrounded by so many great people who taught me that. My parents were one of them. Theyíre the ones that instilled that in me; that, yes, we want you to be a professional boxer. If thatís what you like then do it, but the number one objective and why we came to the United States was for you and your brother to have a great education.

Then you have Mr. Willie Savannah, who is like a second father to me. Heís always preached to me that school, school, school; that boxing is not always what itís made out to be. You can see a lot of stars, like, for example, Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao, Oscar De La Hoya, who make it to that great super star status, but realistically, a lot of us boxers are never going to get there. Weíre never going to make it to the point that theyíve achieved and everything that theyíve done, so what I see and one of the things that has opened my mind as well has been school.

There are so many things that Iíve learned in my years in college that can make me be a successful man outside of the ring, so it makes it interesting. I think thatís what helps me to be and what made me be the champion that I am is the fact that I never relied too much on boxing to have a better future. I always knew that there are a lot of possibilities out there in the world to be a successful person.

Q:
My second question was about the venue. A lot of your fights obviously happen in Houston, Texas, your hometown. What do you think about the fight being in Vegas? Do you think itís the right venue for this kind of a magnitude of a fight in your career or would you rather that it did happen kind of in your own backyard?

J. Diaz:
No. I actually prefer it to be and I love the fact that itís in Vegas. One, because Vegas is the fight town of the country, everybody knows that big pay-per-view fights, big fights always happen in Las Vegas. If it was up to me I would rather not fight again in my hometown because every time Iíve fought here in Houston thereís always seemed to be speculation and arguments about the judges, the referee.

Iíll start off with Michael Katsidis. Then you have Paulie Malignaggi and Juan Manuel Marquez himself have problems with fighting here in Houston because they said that it was my hometown and they were scared that there was going to be favoritism. I donít blame them. Iím not accusing them of anything, but if I was in a fighterís hometown then I would have a little concern about that myself, so thatís why even though itís great it was 15,000-plus, standing room only. Tickets sold.

I love the fact that the fans are so great here in Houston, but at the same time, Iím so happy that itís in Vegas because I donít have to worry about any of the distractions or controversies they may have. Come July 31 weíre going to have a winner and weíre going to have a loser and thatís going to be it.

Q:
My question is for Juan and Ronnie. It seemed to me that the first fight with Marquez turned after you got cut and thatís kind of when he started to work in the upper cuts. Can you hang your hat on that a little bit or is the upper cut probably the main punch that got you that youíre worried about going into this fight?

J. Diaz:
Well, Iím not so much worried about the upper cut. I know that thatís one of his punches, one of his favorite punches to throw and one of his punches that heís beat a lot of guys with, so even though Iím working on the upper cuts I donít see it as the main concern because I know that he has a whole arsenal of punches that he can land just as effectively, but I think that you do bring up a great thing here when you say about the cut. I think that if you see the fight Marquez, even though we know Marquez picks up later on, I actually think that he was slowing down. Once I got cut itís like a lion; when a lion sees blood he just pounces on the prey. I think thatís what energized and helped Marquez out. I think that if it shouldnít have been for that blood that he saw on me then I think it would have been a different story.

Q:
Coming into this fight, obviously, youíre a volume puncher. Thatís what you do. Thatís your bread and butter is overwhelming your opponent, but you also use the jab and to me you seemed like you were winning the fight. So really, this is more for Ronnie I guess; is there really that much of a change that you need to make? Is it more just about getting a little luckier in this fight?

R. Shields:
Well, like I said, I think our strategy basically is just more on the boxing and put the pressure with his jab. He did that. I mean he was doing that very well, but the thing where he messed up was he started leaning in with it. When I mean start leaning in, his distance got too far away and he wasnít stepping in the way he was supposed to. He started landing a couple of times and then Marquez caught him with the upper cut.

But as far as our game plan, I mean if you know me, then my guys are going to jab. I mean theyíre going to jab their way in and then Juan is going to do what he do and thatís be a volume puncher. So Marquez is going to have to keep up with the same things that heís been doing. He knows that. I just feel that Juanís jab is going to play a key role in this fight.

Q:
Finally, considering what a huge draw Juan is in Texas and Houston in particular and how big the gate was the last time, Iím just curious; why have the fight in Vegas? Is it because Marquez won and you wanted a neutral site?

R. Schaefer:
Well, both fighters sort of like wanted to see if the fight could be done outside of Houston after the last one was in Houston. Juan has now fought many of his last few fights in Houston and so we felt it was time, since the fighters encouraged us to do it somewhere else than Houston this time around, we looked around and we felt that Las Vegas was a good choice given the fact, as Juan correctly said, that when it comes to big pay-per-views Vegas certainly knows how to roll out the red carpet.

Itís a very positive environment for the pay-per-views, for the fans. There are great room rates out there. Itís great to make a weekend out of it, to be in Las Vegas and so we really felt that Vegas was the right place given the preference of the fighters as well. But I agree with you. I mean from a dollar point of view I believe at the Toyota Center the gate was over $1 million, so a huge crowd there, but we felt as well that maybe going back there too often is not the right thing to do, so we feel very confident about Vegas.

Ticket sales are going quite well. We went on sale very early on. We saw a tremendous uptick in sales once we had announced the undercard as well. We got as well confirmation that most large, national media outlets are going to be attending the fight, the card, so I think we are going to be doing very well in Las Vegas.

Q:
Juan, you just said that you feel really comfortable in the Lightweight division. Marquezís last fight was in Welterweight. Do you believe that he will have some trouble to make that weight?

J. Diaz:
Well, I donít think heíll have any problems making the weight because heís a small guy in frame, like me. I donít see why he went up to welterweight in the first place, but I think his natural weight is at the lightweight division. Iím hoping that it does have some effects on him going back down, but I seriously doubt it. I donít doubt that heís going to have much problem making the weight.

Q:
Why did you decide to incorporate a dietician in your training? Do you need to be more careful with the food to make the 135?

J. Diaz:
I incorporated the dietician in my training camp because I want to do everything and anything possible for this fight to be successful, to win. I even got a swimming coach. I used to do my strength and conditioning coaches would be the one watching me swim, but I even got a swimming coach for this time around, so Iím doing everything and anything possible because I want to make sure that Iím eating the right foods to have the energy in the gym to train hard every day and I want to make sure that Iím doing everything right.

Q:
I enjoyed your Op Ed. That was well written. I wanted to ask you a question based on that. I live here in Phoenix and I know that you fought here in 2007 I think it was. Most of the fighters on the card have fought in Arizona at least once. My question is about the controversial law, SP1070. If you were asked to fight in Arizona again would you?

J. Diaz:
That is very tough, very tough, because initially I would say no. It is because of all of the controversy that is going on, but I donít specifically or am a little upset about the immigration per se so much because you have people from all over the world that are immigrants. They could be Mexicans, Asians, what not, but the only problem that I see and foresee for the state is not so much the things theyíre doing or the laws theyíre incorporating against the illegal immigrants, but what theyíre doing to them as humans.

Each one of us has individual human rights and weíre all born with those individual, human rights. I think that the state is infringing upon those individual human rights and not just because theyíre illegal immigrants Iím upset, but because theyíre human beings. Some of the things that are going on down there I donít think are very human of the state and officials, the way theyíre conducting things.

Q:
So I guess youíd have to think about that if you were offered to fight in that state?

J. Diaz:
I would definitely think about it and it would be something that I would take into consideration and really sit down and think about it and analyze the whole situation.

Q:
Right now, for instance, in Major League Baseball they have the All-Star Game going on in Anaheim and thereís a lot of discussion about next year about moving the All-Star Game from Phoenix. Itís scheduled for Phoenix. I guess this would be up to each individual boxer or could boxers get together and say weíre just not going to perform in this state anymore?

J. Diaz:
Well, I think right now itís all about individual boxers because us, as boxers, we donít have a specific league like a lot of the MBA players, football players or baseball players where they can go to the league and say their concerns or protest to them. Us, as individuals, as individual fighters, we really canít do that. So it would take some type of big, big organization from promoters or even the sanctioning bodies in the sport of boxing.

Q:
Juan, thereís been a lot of discussion about the fact that youíre going to be studying to become a lawyer. Youíre a college graduate. You have this business. You have all of these other opportunities that are out there. Just from this particular fight is there a down side to that also? Does any of that dampen the hunger that a fighter needs to win, especially when youíre facing somebody that doesnít have all of those other opportunities?

J. Diaz:
Well, I think thereís actually a positive because it depends on how you look at it because, yes, you can look at it and many people may look at it and think that itís a negative because I have so many things going on outside of boxing that I may not be as hungry to fight. But, if you look at it on the other side, which is on my side, itís the fact that in order for me to be successful in all of those aspects of life then I have to be hungry enough because the doors that have been opened for me have been because of boxing, because Iíve been a World Champion, because Iíve been pretty well known all around the nation. So all of the doors and businesses that I have going on, all of the activities that I do outside of the boxing is because of boxing. Iím being realistic with myself. Iím being honest with myself. I will be honest with everybody here and who is going to read this.

For example, Iím hungry for this fight because I want to win it. I know that by winning this fight Iím going to become a great fighter, a World Champion once again. It opens the doors a lot easier. For example, Iím studying for law school right now, but say a hypothetical example, I score a little bit below average on my test. The school of my choice says, ďYou know what? You scored a little bit behind, but youíre this great super star, World Champion whoís going to bring a lot of attention to the school,Ē and bam, I get in.

So thatís why Iím hungry, because I want to be successful outside of boxing and in order to be successful outside of boxing I have to be successful in the ring. Thatís why I train so hard, because I donít want to let that go. I donít want my success to stop just because Iím not a boxer any more.

Q:
You wrote in the article in the Houston Chronicle, ďAfter my days in the ring are over I want to be a successful lawyer who champions rights for the people.Ē Do you see in some ways youíre representing the people whose rights are threatened by SP1070 and also to economic and political things when youíre in the ring?

J. Diaz:
Yes. I definitely do. I definitely do, because when the people see me, when they see me in the ring they see your regular, average Joe. Iím not one of those guys that has a six-pack, that has muscles all over my body, so when these people are going through these tough, economic times and have their individual rights infringed upon and they see me, a Mexican American, who came from illegal immigrants and has become a World Champion and has also achieved his college education, then for a split second or for that night at least that they see me fighting in there itís like Iím fighting for them. They see me in there, everything that Iíve accomplished and they know that whether it is them or their children, that if they fight or work hard enough that things are going to get better and that their lives can change and they can achieve the American dream.

R. Schaefer:
Juan Diaz talking about the American dream, I think thatís a perfect way to end this conference call. Heís going to be, on July 31, in Las Vegas trying to make history come true as well, which is to win the undisputed Lightweight Championship from Juan Manuel Marquez. I know that Juan, because of his personality and what he stands for, what his values are, he will have a lot of people from around the world, particularly here in the United States, rooting for you and for him.

Having said that, I want to really thank all of you media members to be on that conference call, our conference call in a series of these calls and for making the commitment to come out to Las Vegas July 31 to see the rematch of the Fight of the Year and really see the night of the year with the tremendous undercard we have put together.

By the way, tomorrow we will have at 10 a.m. Pacific/1 p.m. Eastern, Danny Jacobs and Dmitry Pirog on. As you know, these two will be fighting for the vacant Middleweight Championship of the World. So that will be a very interesting call. Then next week we will have, on Tuesday, Juan Manuel Marquez and his trainer on as well.

So again, thank you, all, for being on the call. I look forward to talking to you tomorrow. Thank you.

END OF CALL

Marquez vs. Diaz II "Fight of the Year: The Rematch" is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Marquez Boxing Promotions and sponsored by Cerveza Tecate and AT&T. The 12-round rematch of the "2009 Fight of the Year" is scheduled for Saturday, July 31 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nev. and will be for Marquez's Ring Magazine, WBA and WBO Lightweight World titles. The championship fight will be produced and distributed live on HBO Pay-Per-Viewģ beginning at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.

Tickets for Marquez vs. Diaz II are priced at $350, $250, $150, $100 and $50 and are on sale now. Tickets are available for purchase at all Las Vegas Ticketmaster locations (select Smith's Food and Drug Centers and Ritmo Latino). To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also will be available for purchase at www.mandalaybay.com or www.ticketmaster.com.

The Marquez vs. Diaz II pay-per-view telecast, which begins at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT, has a suggested retail price of $49.95 and will be produced and distributed by HBO Pay-Per-Viewģ 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-Viewģ, a division of Home Box Office, Inc., is the leading supplier of event programming to the pay-per-view industry. For Marquez vs. Diaz II fight week updates, log on to www.hbo.com.

Marquez and Diaz will appear larger-than-life on the big screen presented by NCM Fathom. Marquez vs. Diaz II ďFight of the Year: The RematchĒ will be broadcast in high definition LIVE to more than 270 movie theaters nationwide at 9 p.m. ET/ 6 p.m. PT. Tickets to see this fight on the big screen are available at theater box offices and online at www.FathomEvents.com.

Article posted on 15.07.2010



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