Floyd Mayweather and Juan Manuel Marquez discussed their fight, training and other topics with the media this week in preparation for September 19 PPV clash at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. “The biggest fight in boxing is Mayweather vs. anyone. It doesn’t matter who I fight,” stated Floyd. “I don’t call out or chase opponents. Opponents have to chase me. “It’s like a t-bone steak. Basically I ate all the meat off the steak and then threw them the bone….I’m going down in history as one of the best, one of the best of all time, if not the best.” Marquez stated, “Obviously, I have a lot of heart. I’m Mexican. I like to get up there. I like to fight. Winning will be the gift of my life (Marquez celebrates his birthday August 23).”
“I know in my heart that Marquez is going to be at his best. He always comes out and performs to the best of his ability. I’m back training and you’re going to get one hell of a fight.
“Marquez is a Mexican warrior. He represents the Mexican community extremely well and the heritage extremely well. I know he’s going to be at his best when he comes to face the best, so the only thing I’ve got to do is go out there and be me. Be sharp and be smart.”
On retirement and getting back in the ring:
“I had my first fight in 1987 and I had never had a break, so I guess my body needed a break. You know, everybody needs a break, everybody needs a vacation. Boxing is still in me. I still miss the sport.
“I’ve been off almost two years now. So, when you’ve been off two years, you have a chance to relax and just grow as a human being mentally. Not physically, but mentally. Because I feel what makes you a man is taking care of your responsibilities.
“If my body’s going to be taking any type of abuse, and my hands are going to be taking any type of abuse, I might as well do it and get under the lights, and do what I like to do – to perform for my fans. I can’t wait to get out there on September 19.
“I’m the best at my job because I push myself to the limit at my job. I get to the boxing gym before everybody else. If I get there when everybody else is training, I train so long everybody leaves.
“I already know I’m not worried about the Pay-Per-View numbers. I already know we’re going to do good numbers. That’s not what I’m chasing. That’s going to happen regardless. I want to go out there and perform well for all the fans.
“Hopefully I will be remembered in my own way, and hopefully that’s in a good way. Like a lot people say Ali but I think Ali stood for one hell of a cause in his era. And, I take my hat off to all of the champions, but I just want to be known as just one great fighter. Just one great fighter that fought the best in his era.”
On his injury:
“Well when it happened, I tried to work through it. I was fine for a while, but then it happened again and I was like, well you know what; I can’t try to be a superhero or be Superman.
“It’s best to take your time – take a little time off, let it heal and come back so when I do go out and perform I’ll be able to perform to the best of my ability for my fans.
“I’ve been through a lot of physical mishaps before, but only the strong can survive. I’m one of the strong ones. So I just didn’t want to go into this fight like I went into other fights in the past where I wasn’t 100%.
“I’ve been training since last week. All I’ve been doing is running, basketball, or doing a lot of pull-ups and push-ups and dips. You know, getting myself back into shape. Today I’m going to the boxing gym and will probably start working on the floor.”
On the Mayweather Family:
“My dad is coming around now. He is teaching his oldest grandson how to box. So that’s a good thing. He’s coming to the birthday parties of his granddaughters. He’s spending more time with his grandkids, getting to know his grandkids, and that’s the main thing that counts.
“You’ve got to realize, my kids are the future of the Mayweather family and of the Mayweather brand. I feel that we’re stronger – I feel that my family bond is stronger if we stick together and I feel we’re weak if we spread out.
“If you want to learn about the sport of boxing, all you have to do is hang around the Mayweather family. All Roger does is watch boxing all day and study boxing all day. Now me – all I do is sit in the movie theater in my house and eat junk food, like I’m doing right now.”
On Manny Pacquiao:
“Everybody on this phone knows that Pacquiao’s not going to get a 50/50 with Floyd Mayweather. Go back and look at the numbers he did with David Diaz. People seem to forget about certain things. If you go look at what Pacquiao’s grossed in his last two fights, and you see what I’ve grossed in my last two fights, and you go from there. Its still is a business even though it’s a sport.
“Marquez is a guy that really deserves a shot at me so he can make some good money. If Manny Pacquiao really wants to fight me, all he has to do is say it.
“As of right now, Pacquiao – if he’s one of the top fighters in the sport – he’s got to ask for the fight. I’m not trying to tear him out of the frame. It’s not a bad thing with Pacquiao. He has a bad deal.”
On being pound-for-pound champ:
“If pound-for-pound pays any extra money, then you know I’m proud to say, ‘Oh, yeah, I’m pound-for-pound.’ But if it doesn’t pay extra money, I’m happy with who I am as a person and I’m happy with my team.
“So, when these guys are beating each other and the title is switching hands, it’s no different from when people talk about Manny Pacquiao. And I’m not saying that he hasn’t done his job, but he hasn’t done anything that I haven’t done. All he did was follow right behind me.
“I’ve beat everybody – it’s like a steak. It’s like a t-bone steak. Basically I ate all the meat off the steak and then threw them the bone.”
On Arturo Gatti & Alexis Arguello:
“I just want to say, blessing to the Gatti family. Blessings to Artuo Gatti, because he was one hell of a warrior.
“I just try to keep my mind focused on the positive and hopefully raising my kids to be the best that they can be once they become young adults in this world. I try not to keep my mind focused on tragedies, but Alexis Arguello was probably one of the best junior lightweights to ever put on a pair of gloves.
“We know Gatti never turned away from any opponent – never turned his back on any opponent. He fought anybody that was put in front of him and was a beast. He’s a guy that could get knocked down four or five times and come right back. I guess he had throwback fights – he’d get knocked down four or five times, he’d come back in one shot. I mean, it would be lights out for you.”
LEONARD ELLERBE, CEO of Mayweather Promotions
“September 19 obviously is Mexican Independence Day weekend and it’s the biggest weekend of the year, but its Floyd’s night.”
JUAN MANUEL MARQUEZ
“It’s a very hard fight, but mentally I’m preparing myself to win and I feel I can beat Mayweather.
“Winning will be the gift of my life (Marquez celebrates his birthday August 23). The best gift of my life. I’m preparing myself and I’m putting all the ingredients together so I can beat Mayweather.
“I’m getting ready for the best Mayweather ever. I’m not thinking about his retirement. I’m getting ready for the best guy possible…the best fighter in the world.”
On the rescheduling:
“I did get some rest. Nacho is a very experienced trainer. He’s a very smart person and he knew that I shouldn’t burn myself out. I took about a week to ten days off and I came back fresh, motivated and ready to go.”
“I feel that I beat him both times. The first one was very close and I felt that I pulled it off. It was called a draw. And the second fight, I felt that I clearly beat him. I clearly beat him and I should have been on top on the points but for whatever reason, the judges – they saw a different fight that night.”
On being the underdog:
“I think that life is full of surprises. This is what motivates me. This is what makes me train hard. When I wake up in the morning, it makes me want to train harder, run faster and longer.
“I’m going to be in better condition and I’m going to be focused 100%. These are the kind of fights that motivate me. I’m going to prove everybody wrong.
“Everything’s going great. I have a great plan and I’m feeling a lot stronger already. I’m building up the right weight – not just to build up weight, but to build myself up and be very strong. I can feel the difference already.
“Obviously, I have a lot of heart. I’m Mexican. I like to get up there. I like to fight.”
OSCAR DE LA HOYA, President of Golden Boy Promotions
“Marquez wants to challenge the best and that’s why we’re here – because he’s challenging the best in Mayweather. We all know that Mayweather’s the best fighter on the planet and therefore Marquez wanted to fight the best.
“The winner of this fight should be considered the best pound-for-pound fighter on the planet. We can make a strong argument for that.
“People are going to watch to see Mayweather lose in September because Marquez is that good.”
“I felt more skill coming out of Mayweather than I did with Pacquiao. That’s the reason why we named the fight Numero Uno/Number One – because they are fighting to see who the number one fighter is on the planet.”
RICHARD SCHAEFER, CEO of Golden Boy Promotions
“To the millions of fight fans who were so greatly waiting for his return – Floyd Mayweather is feeling better, everything is going well, he is back in training and he has shown a recommitment to the sport of boxing.
“Contrary to some reports, which probably originated from some promoters and people who are not involved with the fight, this fight is doing extremely well. It’s shaping up to become one of the biggest non-heavyweight gates in Las Vegas history. Several of the price categories are sold out already.”
“It will be the most covered weigh-in ever because everybody wants to know what the weight is. So make sure you don’t miss it.”