Jean Paul Mendy Q & A

28.09.06 - In one of two exciting semi-final match-ups, Jean Paul Mendy will take on Henry Buchanan Friday, Oct. 6, 2006, on SHOWTIME at 11 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the west coast) as the “ShoBox” super middleweight tournament continues. In the other 10-round contest from the Chumash Casino Resort in Santa Ynez, Calif., former sparring partners Tony Hanshaw and LaFarrell Bunting will square off.

On Jan. 5, 2007, the winner of the tournament final will take home the International Boxing Organization (IBO) 168-pound title. Gary Shaw Productions, LLC, is promoting the tournament that offers two boxers in the original international field of eight the rare opportunity to appear on national television three times in only seven months.

Question: Can you discuss your career before entering the tournament?

Answer: I am a good fighter and want to become world champion. I go fight by fight until I get the opportunity to go to the world championship. My goal is to become the champion.

Question: What attracted you to the “ShoBox” super middleweight tournament?

Answer: It is interesting because there is a lot of talent, and I was waiting for the opportunity for a long time. Now, I have that opportunity. I love SHOWTIME and SHOWTIME people.

Question: Can you break down your performance against your first-round opponent, Dallas Vargas?

Answer: It was a tough fight. I adapted to Vargas.

Question: What specifically do you think a win in this tournament would do for your career?

Answer: If I win, it will give me a great opportunity. I will be the world champion in Europe and prove my spot as a champion. I will move forward to fight the best fighter in the world. I am looking forward to working with SHOWTIME and to get more fights as a champion.

Question: What makes you the class of the four remaining tournament fighters?

Answer: I am a good man and I get a lot of respect. I am a good fighter, one of the best. I am very exciting to watch and I am a rated champion. The others are not just good fighters mentally and physically, but they know how to adapt to the opponent.

Question: Is the opportunity to scout your upcoming opponent, Buchanan, an advantage, or does it not make a difference in your preparation or confidence level?

Answer: There is no difference. I will take any opponent, and, when that day comes, I know exactly what I have to do. It is just another fight. We will both be in good shape.

Question: What do you respect about Buchanan?

Answer: Buchanan is a good fighter. He is there to fight hard and to win the fight. I respect him first and foremost as a human being.

Question: What do you fear about Buchanan?

Answer: I am not worried. I am there to fight. I do not feel any pressure.

Question: Do you see any flaws with Buchanan? If so, how will you exploit them?

Answer: I will not really know until the day of the fight. Then, I will see his weaknesses and be able to adapt to them and fight like a champion.

Question: Is there a fighter in this tournament who you have been eyeing from the start as someone that you believed you would eventually have to get past?

Answer: All of the boxers will give me a tough fight. But, I have more talent. I am not worried. I just have to be in good shape, mentally and physically. There is no fighter as good as me. I am very cautious and respect every opponent I face. I am ready to fight.

Question: Is there any reason why Europeans have dominated the 168-pound division, or is it just a coincidence?

Answer: It is just a coincidence. The best fighters are in the U.S.A. It can happen in Africa, Asia etc. Europeans have dominated with Joe Calzaghe.

Question: At 32 and having fought primarily in France, how important is it at this point in your career to make a name for yourself and win the tournament?

Answer: It is always important to win the tournament and to make a name for myself. I need to be a fighter like Calzaghe, fight everyone and be the best in the world.

Article posted on 29.09.2006

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