RUBEN GUERRERO GOES NUTS AT PRESS CONFERENCE: CALLS MAYWEATHER A WIFE BEATER
By Rob Soucy in Las Vegas
Floyd Mayweather and Robert Guerrero were cordial, soft spoken and of few words during the final press conference leading up to their pay-per-view fight on Saturday night at Las Vegas' MGM Grand. However, Guerrero's father/trainer, Ruben Guerrero made a it a point to insult Mayweather, much to the dismay of a packed Hollywood Theater. "You're a wife beater!" shouted Guerrero. "You beat your wife in front of your children, you're a wife beater." The fight's promoter, a shocked Oscar De La Hoya, literally pulled Ruben from the podium as the outspoken trainer continued to shout obscenities. Neither boxer said anything substantial until they sat down for smaller roundtable discussions following the press conference. Here are the highlights:
On training camp and fight night: I'm not motivated by money. I want to test my skills against the top fighters, I like pushing myself. I'm 36 without a lot of wear and tear on my body, I'm still sharp and still strong. When I get a chance to concentrate fully as a promoter, I'm taking that to the next level. I feel real good going into this fight, I'm back with my father [as his head trainer]. My dad will be the chief second in my corner. Leonard [Ellerbe] will also be in the corner but [his uncle] Roger [Mayweather] will not be.
On Rueben Guerrero's outburst: I was actually texting [his girlfriend] Miss Jackson as he was up there talking. Look, I'm not fighting his father. I'm here to fight Robert Guerrero. Like I told my dad, you got to carry yourself in a classy way. I was young at one particular time, but I'm a lot older and wiser now. When I was young I was wild, but now my kids are teenagers so I can't be conducting myself in a disorderly fashion.
On how calm he remained despite the insults: I feel like I'm in tip top shape and I don't feel like I have to stand up here and bad mouth Guerrero or his father. Only God can judge me. If I did or didn't do a crime, I served my time. I love my children and I have nothing negative to say about my children's mother. I've been here so many times, I've heard it all and it doesn't bother me. I'll just say a prayer for him. I'll keep my composure until it comes time to fight and I'll do what I do best. His father loves him just like my dad loves me but like I said I'm older now so I look at things differently now and don't let that stuff get to me.
On being incarcerated and his family: I was thankful for everyone who wrote me letters. I probably got 200,000 of them. I make money it doesn't make me, I would rather have my freedom and be poor than be rich without freedom cause it's just like your poor anyway. I thought about a lot of things while I was away. I knew I wanted to grow closer to my family. My dad is sick and if I never made a bond with him and something harsh happened, it would hurt me very, very badly. It's important to me that he has a relationship with his grandchildren. I had to be the bigger man and figure out why we're arguing. I'm in the sport to be the best and so is my father, so why not work together.
On his move from HBO to Showtime: It was a decision that I made for my family. You all think I was with HBO for my whole career but it was really only three years! I'll give the sport 30 months more. I think that's enough, then I can be [promoters like] Oscar (De La Hoya) and Richard (Schaefer) and Leonard (Ellerbe).
On his father's actions: This isn't just talk. My dad is the real deal. He is just so confident in me and he knows I'll back up his words. My job is to focus on the fight, not on what everyone around me is saying. My focus is on Floyd Mayweather, executing my game plan, and winning this fight. I'm not the type of guy to bring that kind of thing up, I wasn't going to go to that level and call him a woman beater or anything like that. That's just not me but I can't tell my father what to say or what not to say. My dad is Mr. All Access. I let him do the talking because it helps me focus. I didn't know he was going to do that, but did figured he would do something crazy. He was being himself!
On calling out Mayweather: I have been asking for this fight for a year and a half, now it's time to show. I definitely believed I would get this fight, I kept doing what I had t do and won the fights that have me in this position. I don't know when he started looking at me as a possible opponent, at least after the [Andre] Berto fight for sure. He says he didn't know who I am. I think now he knows me as good as I know myself (laughs). He wouldn't be the best fighter if he didn't know who was who. That's how you stay on top of your game by studying the fighters in and out of your weight class.
On his arrest for bringing a gun into a New York airport: As soon as I got on the plane, I forgot about it. I'm here in Vegas to do a job, I can't afford to focus on anything else. I have a gun at home for protection and I am an active hunter as well. Unfortunately I was unaware of the gun laws in New York City. Lesson learned. Everything is getting taken care of but it's the least of my worries right now.
On his game plan: The jab is the most important weapon for any fighter in any fight. I'm not looking to take any part of Floyd's game away. I'll do what I do best and if Floyd starts firing that right hand we'll be ready for it. I'm not looking to establish anything in particular early. I'll adjust after the first couple of rounds, what kills speed is timing. I'm going to show him early that I'm coming to fight and I can make the adjustments also. I'm going to establish my game plan early.
On Mayweather: I think he has slowed down a bit, but his slow is faster than most fighters. You can't take that into consideration and judge a guy by only his last fight. I don't think his reaction time is what it was. His defensive skills as well, he gets hit with more punches. But I'm ready for the best Floyd Mayweather and I know he will be able to make adjustments in the ring.
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