Monte Barrett: “I Always Felt Like I Had the Style to Give Tua a Problem.”
Exclusive Interview by Charles C. White: Kindly taking time out of his day, the always friendly and accommodating former heavyweight title challenger Monte “Two Gunz” Barrett had the following answers to my questions…
Article posted on 04.02.2011
Back in July of last year, you turned back the clock and put on a great performance against David Tua. How did you manage to put on such a dominating show against Tua, was it a result of new training methods, or as simple as you just having a good night and having Tua’s number?
MB: Yes Charles it was a little bit of each. There is a saying which I apply to myself when training; too much is giving, much is required. The other was my training regiment; I did something new I started training with Kevin and Luis from NBD fitness. They are former mma fighters who trained me mma style. Also styles make fights. I have the style that would beat Tua 3 out of 3. Last and most important is timing, a fighter has to peak at the right time and I did. Also I had a point to prove I know I am better than those 3 losses back to back.
You would be hard pressed to find anybody claiming that you didn’t win the fight convincingly, yet you were left with a highly controversial draw. What do you attribute this sham of a decision to?
MB: Bad judging and politics which, one day, all boxers fall victim to. I know I won the fight and in my heart and soul that’s all that counts.
What does it feel like to be the only man to have ever officially knocked down David Tua?
MB: That's what my job entails so I don't look at it as an honor, more like that's what I expect from myself. It's me or him, this is the hurt business. I always felt like I had the style to give Tua a problem.
I hear that the rematch with Tua is now signed. Can you confirm this?
MB: Not true, I am good on my side but not Tua. At the end of the day we are fighters, that’s what we do best, so it’s more than likely that Tua will sign. We already have a date; May 6 in New Zealand.
What will you do differently this time in order to ensure victory in a return fight with David?
MB: Get new judges (laughs). On a serious note, press him and not let up this time.
Will you be seeking out another tune up fight before going up against Tua again?
MB: After Davis, no I think I need to stick to the script and be 100 percent focused on Tua.
After the Tua rematch, where do you go from there? Will you call it a day and enjoy retirement, or fight on?
MB: I will call it a day. I have done all I can do and I accept who I am and what I contribute to boxing. I would like to keep my feet in boxing in any way that I can help the sport on the other side of the ring.
When you do eventually retire from boxing, have you given any thought to training fighters yourself, or perhaps a commentating gig?
MB: I will keep all options open besides competing.
In your last fight, on the Williams-Holyfield undercard, you got a draw against journeyman Charles Davis. What happened in this fight Monte? A fluke, or just an off night?
MB: Both. I clearly won the fight and I fought with the FLU that night. Looking at Davis’ record I thought it would be an easy night, I was wrong. I struggled and was 40 percent in the fight but lesson learned; never take nobody lightly and make sure the judges have binoculars.
Also fighting on that under card was Kevin Johnson. I remember a while back you guys were trading words on another web site. Apparently you guys did some sparring a while back and things got heated. For a while it looked as though you guys might make the fight. Why didn't this fight come off?
MB: When Kevin and I were going to fight I got cut in sparring, and that was that. What Kevin and I was engaged in before was called lights, camera, action, you get my drift. I had some time to bond and spend with Kevin and he is a good kid with a bright future and I wish him nothing but the best. On top of that my son Brandon admires Kevin and that's big in my book.
I will go on record as saying that I have always been a fan, and believe that a prime Monte Barrett could have been competitive in any era of heavyweight boxing. So I’m curious, if you could fight any heavyweight from the past, who would it be and why?
MB: Thank you me too. Larry Holmes, who is a legend and I have a great deal of respect for him and what he did in boxing against all odds.
Having fought both David Haye and Wladimir Klitschko, who do you like in a fight between those two should it be made?
MB: I have to change my answer to that question and say Dr. Hammer. Haye has sparked a fire under Wladimir and when that happens for any fighter, beware. On Haye’s behalf, I think for him all the hype is talk to promote the fight, but if anybody could beat Wladimir it would be Haye.
You have had a lot of great moments in your career thus far. What has been your proudest moment in the ring?
MB: That would be winning the WBC Inter Cont. belt in 1999 against Phil Jackson.
Monte, after all is said and done and you are enjoying retirement, how do you want to be remembered as a fighter?
MB: A throw back fighter who never turned down a fight and gave it his best, win, lose or draw.
I want to thank you for your time Monte. Any final message to the readers?
MB: God bless and stay tuned in....
For questions or comments, to schedule an interview, or to just chat about boxing, Charles White can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 360-333-5911.
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