Fernando Vargas Conference Call Transcript

18.08.05 - Conference call transcript: Vargas with co-managers Shelly Finkel and Rolando Arellano, Trainer Danny Smith, Nutritionist and Strength coach Robert Ferguson, Main Events Carl Moretti...

Will this fight be an eliminator?

Fernando Vargas: To be honest, the only person I think about is the person I am fighting right now. I never think about any fighter other than the one I have ahead of me. I will fight anybody, anytime, anywhere. Everybody knows that and my fans know that. The only person on my mind right now is Javier Castillejo and thatís who we got in front of us.

Rolando Arellano: Mayorga shouldnít be making comments. He should be concentrating on his performances. Everyone has seen his performance and thatís all we have to say about that. As respect to the WBC, no we will not be accepting that as an elimination fight.

Vargas: I am ready for whatever Castillejo has to offer. Iíve worked hard along with my trainer Danny Smith and Robert Ferguson and I look forward to putting on a great show..

Javier is going to come to win but I feel that everything that Iíve learned from Danny Smith. I have been bringing in sparring partners that have been here before and they are saying that Iím not the same fighter. My offense and defense are out of this world and that is because of Danny Smith and my strength and conditioning. Iím excited about putting on a great show. Now that Iíve been with coach, everything feels like second nature. One day we will be sparring and coach will say why didnít you do a little bit of this or that Ė nothing drastic, because we are doing everything so great. ďDo this or do a little bit of that,Ē but thatís it. I am very happy to have reached that level so quickly. To do what I am going to do on Saturday, I am excited about.

Physically I am doing great and that goes to my team. Of course I put in my work. I put in 110%, almost to the point of overtraining but I want to be ready.

I didnít get to watch Mayorga, but my team went over there. I heard he looked horrible but I have not seen it myself. I cannot say for myself that he looked horrible but my coach, Danny Smith and Roland and said he looked horrible.

Rolando: I think it is a disgrace that he has the privilege, if you want to call it a privilege, to wear that green belt.

Who would Fernando rather face?

Fernando: I would love to have the opportunity to fight Oscar. I am very thankful that he may give me the chance and if he does I will return the same respect and grant him a rematch.

Rolando: There is always a possibility that we will fight Mayorga, but it must be made perfectly clear that we will not fight under the terms of the WBC and we will not fight under the terms imposed by Don King. We will fight only under fair circumstances. Fernando has the HBO contract. Fernando is the pay-per-view draw and he is the one that continuously puts 12,000 into seats. We will make a determination who we will fight, when we fight and how much we will fight for. Under those circumstances, it is viable. Heís not getting 50%, heís not even getting 40%. If Mayorga has a value, Shelly Finkel, who is one of the best minds, will find out what it is. And it is not a 75-25 split under no circumstances.

He wouldnít get 50%. That is absurd. He doesnít bring in 50% of the people. He brings in 2,000 and Fernando brings in the other 12,000. Heíll bring in 10,000 viewers and Fernando brings in the other 250,000 or 300,000 viewers. So how can we, while protecting the best interests of Fernando Vargas, say he can get 50%.

Shelly Finkel: If you find out what Saturday night did, and I donít think it did that much. Rolando didnít even pay, he went live, so whatever it did, maybe 50,000 buys and youíve got to believe that Rahman-Barrett did a lot of that. SO if you subtract that from it, how much did Mayorga mean?

Rolando: Exactly, and thatís how you figure out the true value fo what the fighter is worth of a potential $12M purse.

Moretti: Heís not the ďBĒ side, he is the ďCĒ side Ė heís a step below B.

Fernando: Even though Garcia doesnít rain me, he will always be in my corner. Just because I am the man that I am, he will always get his just due. I donít have a contract with Garcia, just my word. And I donít break that with nobody. I appreciate everything heís done for me and how far heís been able to take me. But now Iím a totally different fighter and what Iíve learned from Danny, it makes me happy that he tells people that nobody has picked it up as quick as Fernando. Weíve had to work hard and think about it, in the past my other trainers it was quantity instead of quality. Now it is quality instead of quantity. I have this great team and there have been days where I have been very tired, where we may need a day off, or we say weíll just do this or do that. We work in conjunction with each other. No one single person is running the show and the two of them talk daily about what is in or out. Iím going to be at 154 again because of Robert Ferguson and Iím excited about Saturday.

Robert Ferguson: In short, we definitely do a wide variety of training. The great part is that Fernando is extremely diligent which means he says what he does and does what he says, which makes my job way easier. We do a lot of weight training and like no other athlete I have worked with before, when he drops weight he gets stronger and more explosive. It is almost unfair that he is able to fight at 154 lbs.

Fernando: Itís not unfair to me.

Ferguson: Itís definitely unfair to the others but not unfair to the Ferocious One.

Fernando: I took off a year and a half because of my back and in my last fight against a guy that was in great condition and threw hundreds of punches. He was a big guy Ė he fought at 175. I made the weight without killing myself. I was eating. I would have egg whites before I go to bed and sleep all night. I knew nothing about nutrition and Robert Ferguson knows everything about nutrition. Me and Danny talk all the time and Iím happy that heís happy and Iím happy that my teamís happy.

I am ready to go the distance, but I donít think it will go the full distance.

What about the lawsuit:

Rolando: What you have is an organization - the WBC Ė trying to dictate where Fernando should fight and for how much money Fernando should fight for. By doing so with their tactics, they went against their regulatory laws and in addition to that, they violated United States, which has resulted in damages and ultimately has hurt us monetarily or has caused us to lose money. We need to address the situation and we will do so in court.

They wanted Castillejo to fight Mayorga because it was more convenient for them.

Moretti: When we made the deal with Castillejo he was the champion and there was not talk of Mayorga being his mandatory or we would have never approached it. How can you make Mayorga a mandatory. Let me give you some fact. He has lost two out of his last three fights, the last one by knockout. Then he becomes the number one contender. Oh, then they strip Castillejo and come back to tell him, ďWeíll make your fight a mandatory.Ē

Moretti: Forget that, they didnít even give him a chance to go to purse bid.

Rolando: So those are some of the facts. They violated their own body. Itís all about thisÖthey wanted Mayorga to be the champion so we have to adhere to their rules and go into a 75-25 split. That will never happen, not with Fernando Vargas bringing all of the revenue in.

What about Winky Wright?

Fernando: The talks like I need him. I donít need him. I would get paid more money fighting someone else than I would fighting him. He says, ďIím not going to give him the opportunityÖĒ Who is he? If there is anyone that I want to fight, and Iím grateful that he would fight me, is Oscar De La Hoya. He can he say heís not sure if he wants to give me an opportunity. I mean, is he a draw? Does anyone want to go see Winky Wright?

Rolando: I think that if anybody has any negotiating leverage is Oscar de la Hoya.

Fernando: Iíll fight anybody, you know that. But if you pull that stuffÖ

Rolando: Let me put something out there: Vargas vs. de la Hoya; Vargas vs. Mayorga; Vargas vs. Wright. If there is someone that makes business sense, not only for us but for them, it is Oscar de la Hoya.

Moretti: Youíll see, from a boxing point of view, that Fernando will have no problem making 154.

Fernando: Donít think that I donít work hard to get down to 154, because I do. I only had one trainer in my whole career until Danny Smith now. I learned from them, they were right and they publicly said that I was their toughest fight, and that means a lot to me. At 21 years old fighting Trinidad? I feel I am happy where I am at right now because I had two losses, but what I like about what is going on right now is that I feel I will get better with every fight and what Iíve learned from Danny Smith, itís like Pay Station, where I see if he does this, I am going to do that. I canít wait and I hope he comes in and throws some good body shots because I am going to do thisÖ

Danny says, you know whatís great about you Feroz? Some fighters start out great and then fade a bit. But you had only two set backs. And now you are going to go out when you want to go out. They see my sparring, and I want to thank Peter Manfredo, Angel Hernandez, for helping me get ready for this fight. Roland, what did they say?

Rolando: They said, I canít see this guy, I canít hit this guys and heís not the same fighter he was before.

Fernando: To me, that is awesome. I used to just go in and throw punches and they land wherever they land. Now it is quality and not quantity. I am grateful to God for him putting someone like Danny Smith with me. People say that heís not a normal trainer. But I went to the underground. Heís a real trainer and like they say in boxing, you make them and we take them. There are Hall of Fame trainers that donít even know how to hold pads. Coach will slap the paste out of you with those pads if youíre not quick enough. Man, when he used to fight, he was a bad man.

What about the belts?

Fernando: It is the organizations that get it wrong. No, we make those organizations. Not the organization making the champion. Thatís how I feel.

Rolando: Put the WBC belt in the ring and see how many people watch it on their own. See how may tickets it sells. When we come across another belt, weíll see what happens. If I feel that Iím getting my just, and I will. But itís not something I need right now.

Did the break help you?

Fernando: Definitely. Before it would get stiff on me and I couldnít train. Now it is stronger. I have a new mattress, a posturepedic mattress and I take one wherever I go. Itís one side that a friend gave to me and thatís what I take with me. I needed time to rest. I fought back-to-back-to-back without time to rest. I donít even like doing that. Now I maybe will fight twice a year and Iím grateful I was able to take a year and a half off. I have great people around me and Iím excited to be back.

I just know and there has never been a question that I have asked Danny Smith where he didnít say, ďOh, you can do thisÖĒ and I would be thinking about some other move and I would say, ďWow.Ē

I know that Oscar spoke publicly to the media regarding fighting me again.

Rolando: We have had preliminary discussions with Richard (from Golden Boy). He has told me that Oscar is planning on fighting two times in 2006 and that Fernando is one of the considerations.

Fernando: I ma very happy with the way everything has gone in my career and I love being here in Chicago. Without my fans I am nothing. We had a public workout and there were thousands of people waiting there to see me do some pads. I honestly feel that there are no other fans like my fans. They are crazy, they are mean and they feel my energy. I thank them and Iím excited for Saturday.

Do greenback mean more to you than green belts?

Fernando: Definitely. I thank God for everything that I have. Every day in camp we start off with Morning Prayer to help me get through training. The family that prays together stays together. I am humbled by the way people love me and I love them back the same way and without them I am nothing.

What about Castillejo?

Fernando: Any fighter that puts on gloves is a threat. I train hard to make it look easy. Heís a durable champion and a durable fighter. He likes to throw a lot of punches and you saw that against Oscar and Iím going to throw a lot of punches and thatís great. And I get to work on my defense. I canít wait for the fight and we are going to be ready for the best Castillejo.

Article posted on 18.08.2005

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