Ricky Hatton Interview Transcript

RICKY HATTON: Hello everybody. Thank you for joining us this morning. Yes, I’m sure every fighter says the same thing when there are travel preparations. They all say they’re in the best shape of their life. But just don’t want this to be true again, but the training is going absolutely fantastic. And my sparring partners were exceptional. No perfect mirror image to me opponent. I’ve had several sparring partners..

I mean all in all for the five weeks or six weeks I’ve been sparring now about maybe five, six, seven different sparring partners and it has been great. The training has been great. No injuries, and I’ve been down on the weight for some time, so me and my food has been better than ever. My strength training with Cary Kays has been better than ever. I mean if I could have written down on a piece of paper how I wanted my preparations to go, the stage I would like to be at this moment. I’m in training camp. It’s exactly the way it is at the minute. I am just roaring to go.

I mean as the fight gets nearer, you would expect me to start feeling a little more nervous, but, I feel with confidence building with each day that passes by really. I mean there’s no doubt in my mind what the outcome of this fight is going to be. And it’s great to finally set foot in Las Vegas. I think when you set foot in Las Vegas the fight is upon you, it’s here now. So you get a little bit of a tingle down your back because you know it’s finally nearly upon us.

Yes, my body clock’s back on track now. Obviously it takes maybe three or four days to get your body clock on track what with the long flight over and the time difference, but I’m back to normal now in that department so to speak. So we’ve settled in nice to the house. We’ve got our routine in the gym and everything, so it can’t be going any better at the minute. And I don’t ask for much, but the only thing I ask for is that every person from the past picks for Floyd Mayweather to win this fight I think. But I’m sure you’ve all got a lot of questions you want to ask.

So rest assured, I’m in the best shape of my life, and looking forward to shocking the world. So thank you for listening and finally your questions guys.

DAN RAFAEL, ESPN: Hey Ricky, I’ve been watching 24/7 like I’m sure most of the folks have. And I’ve seen also yourself and the way you interact with Billy in the corner and the way you guys get along outside the ring in the press conference and such. Can you just talk a little bit about the bond that you and Billy have developed over the years? He’s quite a character it seems like. Obviously you like to have a good time also, but you seem to get real serious, obviously, in the ring when you’re training, but it seems to be a real friendly relationship outside the ring. Just talk about the way you guys get along with each other and how that’s worked over.

RICKY HATTON: Yes absolutely …

DAN RAFAEL: your 43 fights.

RICKY HATTON: I mean, yes, everybody needs to realize that, there’s things that it seems to be when you look up my camp there seems to be a lot of laughing and joking and a little bit of fun in there and Mickey taking and stuff like that. But, one thing that’s priority and one thing that is probably, a country mile ahead of everything else is how hard we train. It’s just we like to make the training fun, me and Billy. I know one thing for certain. I know I hear that Floyd Mayweather is a fantastically fit fighter. He very rarely gets sided in his training and he gives and obviously where he’s got in boxing that goes without saying. But I can categorically say that there is one thing that will, is unanimous in this fight, he won’t be training as hard as Ricky Hatton, and he won’t be in his best shape like Ricky Hatton.

But, yes, Billy and I have been mates for years. I started working with Billy when I was 15, 16 years of age, and we hit it off right from the start. Sometimes, when we talk about tactics or opponents, he’ll already be, we won’t even have to say anything because we’ll both be thinking it. He only has to say one word to me to know what he means. And that’s the way you should be with your trainer. You’ve got to be on the same wavelength as your trainer, and the silly thing about me, but if boxing ended five years ago would we still be mates, it’s we’ve never had nothing more than a handshake between us, me and Billy, in all the years we’ve been together, which in boxing these days is I would probably say is quite a rare thing.

So no, it’s a wonderful relationship and there is time to laugh and joke and there is time to be serious. And, when it comes to boxing, you won’t get two more serious men in the sport than me and Billy Graham. I think that was felt by the performance I put on the shake, that, I mean come December 8th really. But we’re just two local lads from Manchester, from the housing estates that have done very, very well. And sometimes when you get to a certain level of certain profile, I suppose, people always expect you to act differently. We say what the best and what comes into our mind really, which I think on the 24/7 program has made for quite entertaining viewing at times.

BERNARD FERNANDEZ, PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS: Ricky, a lot of us had read the story in ESPN the magazine about, the fact that throughout your career, tended to go up 35, sometimes every 40 pounds between fights. How familiar are you with Roberto Duran’s history of doing the same thing, and how amazing is it that he was able to stay on top or pretty close to the top for 30 years?

RICKY HATTON: Yes, I mean so I have a lot in common with my hero. We never take a backwards step. We’re very, very passionate. We’re very, very fiery characters. And yes, fight his style, great to watch, but yes, we have enjoyed ourselves. I mean a lot of people would say well that will affect your longevity. But I suppose it can do, but I mean a lot of people have said for years, and that’s the whole purpose. I mean Floyd has tried to insult me by calling me Ricky Fatton, but what he doesn’t realize is I’ve called myself Ricky Fatton in the first place.

I do put on a lot of weight in between me and my fights, and that’s the whole reason I’m putting a Ricky Fatton T-shirt on after the fight because for so many years now fashion critics have turned on me and said, well he’s too much weight. He’s put too much weight on. I think it was the Kostya Tszyu where it comes to the fourth one when I put on about 40 pounds, and then they turned around and said, oh, Ricky Hatton won’t last four rounds. He’s put on too much weight. And, just things like, I feel like saying, change the record a bit now. You’ve been going on about this for the last maybe six, seven years, and in that time now I’ve won four world titles, two weight divisions. Probably one of the longest unbeaten ones in British fighting, and I’m fighting the pound for pound best per fight in the world. So maybe it’s time you should stop pointing the finger at my weight because obviously, it’s whatever I’m doing it’s working for me. It certainly won’t work for the reversal, and up to now it’s working for me.

I always feel the need before I start training companies to be out of shape. And I need to put loads of weight on and I need a bit of a mountain to climb so I knuckle down to it, well I mean the beauty thing about boxing is training efforts there’s no right way or wrong way. Ideally it would be best if I didn’t put as much weight on. But that’s the way I am. That’s what makes me what I am, you know? It’s just if it worked hard for it, it worked for me. It might not work for everyone. Floyd doesn’t put an ounce on him between his fights, but every fight is different and that’s what makes it such a unique sport.

GEORGE ROSENLASSER, VALLEY NEWS: I wanted to know if you’re happy with the way you’ve been portrayed in 24/7, and have you learned anything about Floyd Mayweather in the show?

RICKY HATTON: A little bit. I’ve been happy the way I’ve been portrayed. I mean the way I’ve been portrayed is the way I am. You know, one thing I think that you see in them is that we are a family.

The other statement I have is, I don’t lie about a single thing. People say, do you like to have a drink of alcohol, and I say, yes, yes, of course, I love to. And do you like fat foods, yes. And do you put weight on, yes. And, these people are maybe a little bit more vain, would probably not admit to that, and I do. And I think with what you see with me, you see an honesty in my life, the way I am period. There’s honesty in the way I train and prepare for me fights. And, I’d like to think Ricky Hatton is more of the whole package to him. He’s not just, my fan base isn’t just because of the way I fight. It’s the way I am and the way I act, and I think it portrays me, to be exactly what I am, just a normal kid doing very well at what he does. And, yes, no, it’s been great.

And as far as learning anything from Floyd, it’s nice to see the little bits that he does, and I mean he’s been quite public on 24/7 of the fallout with his father Floyd Sr., which is a shame bearing in my mind how close I am to my family. But, he’s putting things right and essentially you see him spending time with his kids. I mean that’s probably another side of Floyd where the fans have been able, to see.

But I’m enjoying the 24/7 show. I like what I’m seeing from his training camp. And I like watching his pad work because although it’s fantastic for his hand speed, I don’t think, I think it’s a lot of training in the comfort zone, hitting the speed ball and just, hitting the bag and hitting the pads very, very lightly with very little power I might add. And also the person, Carlos Baldomir who he’s sparring with, which I think Carlos Baldomir certainly isn’t the quickest, and he plods forward as opposed to move forward, so I think it’s when they think they’ve got, if they’ve got Baldomir spar to emulate me, then that’s a very, very good sign because I think Baldomir – no disrespect to Carlos Baldomir. When he was in the best shape of his life, when he fought Floyd he was far from fit and quick enough, so I don’t know what he’s going to be like when he’s out of shape.

So there are a lot of positives. And I’m looking when I see Floyd in the 24/7. The trouble has risen with his hands again which is common knowledge that Floyd has bad hands. I’m just wondering from my point of view, I mean on the night if Floyd Mayweather beats Ricky Hatton, which I don’t think he will, but if Floyd Mayweather was to beat Ricky Hatton and it was a fair result, I would hold me hands up and say, well I was beaten by the better man. But on the night if I beat Floyd Mayweather and it is, seems to be a very fair result, I hope Floyd Mayweather doesn’t blame it on the dancing and doesn’t blame it on his hands.

ROBERT MORALES, LOS ANGELES DAILY NEWS: Listen, considering that you are going up against the fighter that most experts believe is the pound for pound best in the world, what would a victory over him mean to you in your heart, and what would it mean for your career?

RICKY HATTON: What it would mean? It would mean everything. I mean being a world champion was obviously the dream of every youngster who starts off boxing, but I’ve become the best fighter in my weight division when Kostya Tszyu. But to be the best fighter in your weight division in the world is one thing, but to become the best fighter in the world in any weight division I think is, I think it just goes without saying it’s (INAUDIBLE) and not my words but (INAUDIBLE) words. It will be the biggest win in British boxing history. So I think that it doesn’t need me to say what it would mean to my career and what it would mean to my life really, to be the best in boxing period would really be something else. I just can’t wait. I believe I’m going to do it. There’s not a doubt in my mind, obviously 24/7 shows the best bits, but I mean the more I watch of the 24/7 show it fills me with confidence. As the fight gets nearer sometimes doubt can come in. It’s not been the case. Yes, these are the days you’ve dreamed off. It’s massive, it’s huge.

CHUCK JOHNSON, USA TODAY: With both of you guys being unbeaten, you and Mayweather, I just want to know, in terms of how you view your record, how important is that 0 to you being unbeaten, to your self-esteem and how you feel about yourself as a fighter?

RICKY HATTON: Well I mean a defeat doesn’t finish your career. I think fighters through history have shown that, but, it is nice to have that unbeaten one. It’s for your marquee value, obviously financially, being unbeaten, especially when you’ve got a long unbeaten runs like me and Floyd. So it is important. It’s not the be all and end all. I mean fighters have got beat and come back to be better fighters. So it isn’t the be all and end all, but, yes, it is important if you’re a fighter and a fighter in your heart it’s pride, knowing that you’ve never been, you’ve never tasted defeat. So yes, it is important.

GARETH DAVIES, DAILY TELEGRAPH: Ricky, at the beginning of this conference call, Oscar de la Hoya said that a lot of people are going to be surprised because they’re going to lose a lot of money at the fight, probably referring to the fact that he expects you to win. How do you feel about him backing you to win, and has he given you any technical advice because he’s obviously been in, been Mayweather before?

RICKY HATTON: Yes, we chat along the way of, styles and what might work and what might not work. Obviously Oscar sometimes leaves us to our devices because I mean what me and Billy Graham have done from day one, I mean it’s got me to this point. It’s won me 44, it’s 43 fights unbeaten, and all them world fights. So, I think Oscar realizes that, he knows what we’re doing, but obviously, there are bits of advices and a little bit, especially with Oscar sharing the ring and being the fighter and the person he is, he’s someone who you look up to give you advice, but, yes, he has been great. We’re very (INAUDIBLE) from Oscar the sparring partners, I mean both me and Billy we’ve gotten all these years, so we have been doing something right, you know.

So no, it just can’t be going back to where it is, it does make you feel good when someone like Oscar, who certainly knows boxing believes you can do it. And yes, I think a lot of people in Vegas are going to lose money because I think everybody has picked Floyd to win this and everyone has expected him to win me. And I think very few people are picking me to beat him, which really suits me fine. In fact, I wouldn’t be, I wouldn’t give two shits if everybody picked Floyd Mayweather because I know what an oh sweet victory that’s going to be when I do it. And the last time nobody give me a chance was against Kostya Tszyu and we made him quit, and I think I’m going to make Floyd quit.

RON LEWIS, THE TIMES: First thing, could you tell us how you, and what you’re still doing training-wise now that you’re in Vegas. And last week Cary told us that you, as you put it up to nutrition for the fourth time. Is he actually letting you eat anything you actually want to eat yet?

RICKY HATTON: No, I mean, it would be frivolous to eat anything you want to eat. I mean you can eat as much as you want to eat, but obviously the key is it’s got to be good food. There’s no point in, if your weight starts and you’re going out eating barbeque, spare ribs and chips, I mean that’s not going to do you any good. But no, I mean my weight is well on target. I’m on the weight now, so I can increase me diet. The diet’s gotten better as the weight’s gone down. I mean as the training has intensifies the diet’s got better. So I’m bearing in mind, I won’t for this fight. I’ll be in as good a shape and I’ll probably have more energy because I won’t have to deplete my body down to the 10 stones, to the 140 pound mark. I’ve got to just get down to 147. So, yes, I mean everything is going perfect.

MICHAEL KATZ, MIAMI HERALD: Hey, going back to Kostya Tszyu, another fight where nobody really gave you much of a chance to win, do you have that same kind of feeling coming into this fight as you did going into that fight?

RICKY HATTON: Very much so. I mean nobody gave me a fair chance against Kostya Tszyu, and I think Floyd would like to think that with this being the biggest stage that I will have boxed on, I think he’d like to think that the pressure will get to me. But I think I’ve always boxed big, although it is the biggest stage I’ve boxed, bearing in mind I’m fighting for the pound for pound title but before I was world champion, I was boxing in front of bigger crowds than I’m going to box on December the 8th. So I think I’ve always been at the right preparation. I’ve been groomed for this level. I think that with the Kostya Tszyu fight nobody gave me a prayer. With me, my pressure, when I put people on you, put pressure on a match, but everybody expected me to walk onto one of them right hands of Kostya Tszyu and that would have been it. But my determination, my stamina, my chin, everything, I was oblivious to tiredness, and I was oblivious to pain that night because of the man I was facing. And I knew if I left him alone for just half a second he would probably line me up and nail me with that big right hand.

So with Floyd Mayweather, it’s a different, a totally different tale, but I think to beat Ricky Hatton, I think maybe you need that fire power to stop me coming. I mean if you don’t hurt me, I’ll keep coming all night. And although Floyd has different attributes and different manners than Kostya Tszyu, I mean, probably Floyd has the speed and the defense and the boxing ability over Kostya Tszyu had the strength inside, the physical strength of that right hand, so what I’m trying to say is I think you need power and I think I’ve been more worried facing power than speed in many ways because I think you’ve got to stop me coming at you. I mean that’s one thing you’ve got to do. You’ve got to stop Ricky Hatton coming at you because I’ll keep coming all night unless you hurt me. And has Floyd got the power to hurt me? I have no doubt at times in the fight he might lead me a bit of a merry dance and put me off with his speed and his wonderful boxing ability. But can he do it for 12 rounds, and has he got the power to stop me coming? I mean Kostya Tszyu couldn’t do it with that big murderous right hand. I think it will be difficult for Floyd, but obviously Floyd has his strengths, his speed, his dependencies, you know, his boxing ability.

So there is no different problems to the Kostya Tszyu fight, but ultimately has he got the fire power to deal with my agitated pressure, and that’s the key, agitated pressure, yes.

DAVID ISAACSON, SUNDAY TIMES: I read some time ago that you met Floyd at a boxing fight, and when you approached him he was quite rude to you. Would you mind taking us through that and just saying whether that’s going to pay effect to it all in terms of your mindset going into this fight?

RICKY HATTON: I don’t think it will affect my mindset going into the fight. It was when, it was at the Hopkins fight, Jermaine Taylor, and it was blown up to be a little bit worse than what it actually was to be honest with you. I mean I think we both sat in the same row, and he sat a few seats further down, so he had to obviously walk past me. And I stood up and I went to shake his hand, and he wouldn’t shake me hand, and he muttered something under his breath. I think somewhere on the lines of, how let’s get it on, I’ll knock you out, or something like that. So, I mean he didn’t want to shake me hand, I mean there was no incident, pushing or shoving or arguments. It wasn’t merely a thing, but out of respect I just, hi Floyd, how are you doing, went to shake his hand, then he just dismissed me, as if I was saying, I want to beat you type attitude. But I have to be honest, I didn’t lose a wink of sleep over it. So, I mean that’s Floyd really. I mean and it’s not like we should all get to a stage where you, that’s the dominance issue, you shouldn’t lose any sleep and get worried about it. No, that won’t affect me before the fight. I think it’s not just how Floyd acts in this fight, it’s how he acts in all his fights. So I don’t take anything personal. I think that’s just Floyd.

DAVID ANDERSON, DAILY MIRROR: Hey Ricky, I was just curious to see how you’re getting along. It sounded like some sort of student (ph) highs (ph) with you, Matthew (ph) Market (ph) at home watching Porky’s (ph) videos. I hope you’re all behaving yourselves.

RICKY HATTON: Well the last thing I think we, last kind of thing that we come (ph) under (ph) is students (ph) I think, but, no, I mean this is a busy house. You know, we’ve got, there’s me, Matthew, you’ve got Matthew Matten, Lee Beard who is one of the coaches at the gym. And we’ve got popular security guards that keep an eye on the house when we’re out, and people are coming in and out of the house and I’m not one of these fighters that like’s to shut himself away from everything. I like my life to, I don’t want people to act different around me, and I don’t want my life to change as much, although, we miss your homely surroundings and your home comforts like back home, but you try and get on as much as, as normal as possible don’t you? And that’s what we’re doing really Dave.

DIEGO MARTINEZ, REFORMA NEWSPAPER: Hi Ricky. Diego here from Reform Newspaper in Mexico. Ricky, when you watch the videos, what mistakes you have found in Floyd Mayweather’s title?

RICKY HATTON: What mistakes? Well he has a lot in his armor. He’s very, very good at what he does. He’s got a wonderful defense, and he likes to take the steam out of his opponents by making them miss. There’s nothing more tiring than when you’re missing your opponent.

But yes, I mean he has a lot of strengths, I think he waits for his opponent and when it’s me he shouldn’t be waiting too long because someone who is constant and on you all the time as me, I mean who doesn’t really tire and get stronger in the fight, he doesn’t want to wait around too much. But, no, he’s got fantastic hand speed. I mean, but I think, I think my styles or attributes to diffuse what he does. I mean speed is a good thing, but I move in very, very quickly on me opponents and stick to them like glue for long periods. I have a constant buddy at that and generally he’s struggled against people that have put the pressure on him, Castile, the first fight, against de la Hoya, and really I wouldn’t even call that pressure, to be honest with you. I mean if that’s, if that’s what pressure is and he tends to not like pressure then I think he’s got a whole lot of trouble coming his way.

STEVE CARP, LAS VEGAS REVIEW: When Manny Pacquaio fought here in October, he talked about the tremendous burden that comes with being a national hero, and I’m wondering, for you back in the U.K., with all the people that are coming over here to support you, as well as back at home, how do you deal with the pressure that comes and the responsibility that comes with being a national hero?

RICKY HATTON: I think I deal with it quite well really. I mean it all depends on your frame of mind. I, you know, it’s, you know, for me it’s just another fight. I’d like to think that there have been more nerves at this stage, but I mean I think as the fight gets nearer and doubt starts creeping into your mind, the pressure does tend to come under you. But I mean, doubt hasn’t come into my mind yet. This isn’t a fight where there’s the slightest bit of doubt in my mind that I’m going to lose. So obviously in knowing that, you’re fighting an opponent that you believe you can beat. The pressure doesn’t come under you as much as what you’d maybe have if you were going in there expecting to lose.

But no, I have a fantastic following. It spurs me on. It makes me feel proud. I get a huge rush when fight fans turn around and say how much they love me and that I’m the people’s champion. They respect me because of all the success that I’ve had, I haven’t changed one little bit. My feet are still firmly on the ground. And I look at myself as no different than the man in the crowd. So that spurs me on I think, it doesn’t make me, where the pressure should get on you. It doesn’t get on me. The only pressure I have on myself is to myself, needless to say I want my fans, to make my fans and country proud, but I try and use it to me advantage and it is an advantage. And it’s all down to the mentality of the person or to your self really. I mean my mentality is it doesn’t affect me. I just look forward to doing them proud rather than I don’t look forward to the burden of letting them down. I look forward to how proud I’m going to do when I do win.

JOHN DILLON, DAILY EXPRESS LONDON: I want to come up to, over to Mr. de la Hoya and ask a question there and ask his assessment of the two fighters’ styles and his assessment of the contest.

OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Yes, I’m here.

JOHN DILLON: Yes, I wondered just, could you just give us your assessment of them, of both fighters with two very contrasting styles? And just tell us what you think really.

OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Well I mean my thinking is, I’ve been in there with Floyd Mayweather and we fought at 154 pounds, even though he was lighter, probably weighing around 150, 151. Obviously the power is different. Where Floyd really doesn’t rely on power, he relies more on his speed. And from what I’ve seen with Hatton, he relies on both, because he has both. He has speed and power. And I think the difference with any fighter that Hatton has faced is that Hatton brings intelligent pressure. And I think that’s the key word there. He not only comes forward and puts pressure on you more than, more than I did and even more than Castillo did, but he does it in a very intelligent way. And so I think that’s going to play a big part in this fight. It’s going to be a tremendous fight. You’re going to have both of the best fighters in that ring that night and it’s all about who is going to be in the better shape and who is going to want it more. And it’s going to be a great fight.

MARKS STANIFORTH, PRESS ASSOCIATION: There are quite a few obvious comparisons from a British point of view between this fight and Lloyd Hunigens win over Donald Coolio a time ago. I just wondered if you’d seen tapes of that fight and whether there was anything you can take from it and, if you appreciate those certain similarities?

RICKY HATTON: Yes, there was some, I think, most people would have, some call it the best pound for pound fighter in the world at the time. And I think what Floyd’s best attribute when he comes into the ring was his famous approach. He got into the ring and, it was like, I don’t care who you’ve beat or who’ve you’ve won or how many titles you’ve won or how many weight divisions. He didn’t look at the stats. He just looked at the man. And, he went out there without jumping right on him straight away, let the punches go, combinations, I mean real, put the pressure on him, controlled pressure, and totally threw him out of his stride and beat him up in the end.

It’s stuff like that, I mean nobody gave Floyd Hunigen, nobody gave Lloyd Hunigen a chance. Nobody gave me a chance against Kostya Tszyu. And some Robert Geran against Sheboy Leonard the first fight. Nobody gave Geran a chance really. I mean sometimes the fellow with the most talent doesn’t always win. I mean the tactics right, who wants it most, who is in the best shape, who gets off to the best start. And there are lots of things in the equation that sometimes result, and if boxing has told us one thing, look how many upsets there’s been through boxing history really.

Not anybody says that this fight is beyond me. I mean I think I’ve got the style to give Floyd Mayweather absolutely nightmares. I mean, when you think the fight he’s come closest to losing was obviously against Oscar last. Oscar put the pressure on him. And Castillo the first fight. And Castillo in a lot of people’s eyes won the first fight. And so a lot of people would turn around and say, well when, Ricky put on a bad performance against Castillo, than Floyd did, but then you’ll also have some that will say well Castillo has seen better days.

But if I can make a statement now without sounding too disrespectful to me old friend Jose Luis Castillo, even Castillo in the first fight against Mayweather, when he was seen to be in his pride, if you narrow it down and say, was his footwork, was Castillo’s footwork as good and as quick as Ricky Hatton’s is? Was his body punching as good as Ricky Hatton? Does he move in on his opponent as quickly as Ricky Hatton does? Is he as big a hitter as Ricky Hatton is? Does he have as much boxing ability as Ricky Hatton does? Does he have a better work rate than Ricky Hatton? I would have to say no to all of them. And, as you know, he nearly did it, so I’ve got huge confidence out of that, I know what I’m up against, I know what his strengths are and I know what his weaknesses are and I know what I think he tries to do in the fight. I think I’ve got the tools for the job, and that wasn’t meant to be disrespectful to Jose Luis Castillo. I mean but I think in every department from footwork to strength to speed to boxing ability to power to work rate, I think even in his prime I think I have it in every department. And when you think Castillo nearly beat Floyd, that’s the way I see the fight going.

RAUL SAENZ, NOTIFIGHT: Ricky, in the last teleconference with Floyd, he says that, he mentioned that he’s not fighting the best British boxer right now. For him, the best British boxer is Joe Calzaghe. When he never has fought out of Europe, what are your opinion about that?

RICKY HATTON: Well people will make their own minds up how, you know, people will make their own minds up how good they actually think I am or how good they actually, or how good they think I am in the standings of boxing champions, past and present. I mean it’s up to the people to make their own minds up. I mean I let them make it up. I’m not going to go out and say I think I’m the best. I think this, I think I’m not but little comments like that makes me, throws me compliments for the fight really because he’s not as clever as what he thinks. One minute he’s saying he’s the best pound-for-pound. If he’s saying he’s the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world and in fighting me he’s not fighting the best fighter in Britain, what a fool he’s going to look when he gets beat.

EDDIE GOLDMAN, SECOND OUT RADIO: I don’t know if you’ve gotten a chance to see the full HBO 24/7 series that they’re showing in the states here. On the second episode, they seem to hint that maybe Floyd is having some problems with his hands. They showed him getting physical therapy a couple of times a week, and at the same time they showed you doing all the leg presses and messing up Billy Graham’s finger during the training. Do you think there’s anything to that or that may be a factor in the fight?

RICKY HATTON: Well I mean Floyd has always had problems with his hands. I mean that’s pretty common knowledge. I mean he’s had it for all his fights apparently. We never saw that on the last 24/7 fight, the last 24/7 build up with Oscar and Floyd. So, but that, I mean he might be having trouble with his hands. And to be honest, I’m only worried about how my preparation is going. I mean I’m not worried about Floyd mainly. If Ricky Hatton’s preparation is OK, that’s all I’m bothered about. But I think, as I said earlier to answer the questions to one of the guys, I mean I’m not going to turn around and call Floyd a liar. I mean it is common sense everybody knows he has problems with his hands. I don’t think it will happen, but if Floyd Mayweather was to beat me on the night and it was a fair result, I would hold my hands up and say well I got beat by the better man. But I think if I beat Floyd Mayweather on the night and it was a fair result, I hope Floyd doesn’t bring out the old, my hand got, because I mean we’re the best pound-for-pound fighters I mean that’s, if you wanted to be a cynic you could probably say, well if you’ve got an injury you want to hide the fact, so why is he telling everyone. So if I beat Floyd Mayweather on the night and it’s a fair result, I would like to think Floyd would be man enough and turn around and say, well I got beat by the better man on the night, the better man won. And I would hate to think that he would turn around and say, well, I got beat because I went in the dancing competition or I got beat because of me hands. You know? That’s just the way I see it.

FRANCIS WALKER, BLACKATHLETE.COM: Ricky, Mayweather talks a lot of trash and he’s talked down to you on a number of different occasions. Do you think it’s an attempt for Mayweather to try to get into your head or is this just all for show?

RICKY HATTON: I don’t know. I’m not really bothered. And you need to know me personally before you, to realize that whatever he’s doing, I mean it’s not getting under me skin. I mean he’s tried to insult me by calling me Ricky Fatton. I mean doesn’t he realize I named myself Ricky Fatton in the first place. I mean I don’t think everything he’s tried to do, I think he’s an insecure person. I think that’s why he surrounds himself with five or six bodyguards, and they always seem to be yes men. You know? And he always needs people whispering in his ear, you’re the man, you’re number one, you’re going to do this, your going to do that. And that’s all a sign of insecurity. You don’t need anybody whispering in your ear, to tell him the best, if you believe that. If you believe you’re the best then you don’t need anybody reminding you or reassuring you, and that’s the way I feel.

I think he’s an insecure person and I think he does like to play mind games. And I don’t think he does it to try to intimidate you because he needs to look in the world. He’s not exactly what you call intimidate looking with his nice suits on and his bling. He doesn’t exactly make me want to run down the street away. But I think what he tries to do is get under your skin and annoy you, more annoy you rather than scare you. He must surely know when he sees me and he looks in the mirror and he knows that I’m not scared of him, and he knows that I believe I can win. And he knows I have no fear with him. So I think, especially when we did the promotional tour, I think when he realized what little reaction he got from me, I think that would have affected him more than me. He really does not bother what me when he insults me or care what he throws at me. I could not care less, from the bottom of me heart, couldn’t care less.

“UNDEFEATED” — WBC world and Ring Magazine welterweight champion “Pretty Boy” Floyd Mayweather will meet world junior welterweight and Ring Magazine champion Ricky “The Hitman” Hatton for the WBC world welterweight and Ring Magazine championships Saturday, Dec. 8 at MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Promoted by Golden Boy Promotions and Mayweather Promotions, and sponsored by Rock Star Energy Drink, Tecate Beer and Southwest Airlines, the fight will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View. For more information on Mayweather vs. Hatton, visit www.goldenboypromotions.com.

The HBO all-access series “MAYWEATHER/HATTON 24/7” debuts a new episode Sunday, Dec. 2 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT on HBO. The four-part series, with unprecedented access, will chronicle the fighters’ preparations for the Dec. 8 super-fight at MGM Grand and will provide viewers with a compelling look at two extraordinary champions.

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