Lord Of The Force
Join Date: Apr 2008
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Q: Yes, Tony, I was just wondering if you could kind of detail, what was wrong -- what the specific injury was going into the first Klitschko fight and when it started to hamper you and kind of how it hindered your training and all that, and -- and specifically how it injured you in the fight, as well?
Tony Thompson: Well, I had a torn meniscus in my right knee. So, you know, it hampered me in terms of I couldn't do all the road work and all the extra work you have to do to prepare for a guy like a Wladimir Klitschko.
I've always told people if you cannot master a (conditioning) you have no chance. And that just proves to be (inaudible) be the truth.
I mean, obviously going in the fight I was so hyped up about fighting for the heavyweight championship of the world I ignored the (knee) pain. You know, I tried to do my best in terms of training. I sparred hard. My team knew I sparred hard. But when it came down to it, you know, my leg got tired early in the fight. I wasn't able to push off.
Anybody that saw the punch stats knew I outlanded Wladimir. I kept going up in punches landed. I was the only guy that consecutively in three different rounds, you know, went higher and higher in terms of the punches that I landed on him. And that has never been done in his career.
But the problem that happened to me (inaudible) didn't have the power to drive through those punches. I didn't have the two legs to stand on to actually sit down on those punches and deliver them with heavyweight-type force.
You know, you put me in better conditioning, with more strength on my legs and still being able to touch him as often as I did. And I'd like to see, you know, how the results could be different. You know, nobody going to be able to convince, you know, yes, I'm a light-hitting heavyweight, but I'm still 240-plus pounds. And I don't care if you've got a guy hitting you 240-plus pounds multi -- multi times in any round, you know, anything could happen.
And (inaudible) to see me with two legs up under me the difference.
Q: Tony, how did you hurt your leg initially? How did you suffer the knee injury, do you remember?
Tony Thompson: Couldn't tell you. All I know is I was working out and I realized I couldn't run too well (inaudible) on my leg. I could not tell you.
Q: Obviously, Barry, this is a different fighter, different situation. You're going overseas. But having been in that underdog situation and accomplished it, does that -- number one, does that give you more motivation, more confidence? And also how much of that do you bring into this situation as a parallel to -- with Tony?
Barry Hunter: Anytime I step in that ring and anytime I bring any of my guys to that square circle, you know, I'm very, very confident in what they can do because I know the preparation that goes into us getting ready for fights.
Definitely, I think this is a different Tony Thompson than the last one four years -- or about four years ago. He's feeling better, you know, as far as his body's concerned, healthier. And, you know, he's faced this man before, so therefore, you know, what (we) see in the ring come July the 7th is nothing different than four years ago.
So, you know, we're definitely looking forward to the challenge for the title. I know how we felt after the last fight. And that was a long plane ride home, and neither one of us want to experience that again.
So I'm looking forward to it. I know Tony is. And definitely, hopefully, at the end of that night we bring that world title back to United States.
Q: One of the things that struck me most when I -- when I first saw you is that you certainly appeared to have trimmed down nicely and to be fight ready. And I was wondering what you did to prepare yourself in terms of overall strength and conditioning for this particular fight.
Tony Thompson: Well, I mean, you know, I got a great strength conditioning coach, (Tony Burton). I mean, he just took me through a lot of things to try to strengthen up my legs, my base, my core -- a lot of things, man. I mean, you know, my (longer) left shoulder -- to give you specifics on everything. But just to say that he know what my weaknesses was. We worked on those weaknesses extensively.
And, you know, we accentuated what I couldn't do and made sure that I could do by the end of the camp. And it all -- to me it all came together perfectly. Man, Tony, did a great job of just, you know, making sure I had a basis up under me to be able to accomplish the things that Barry wanted me to do when I got to the boxing gym.
So on one hand, you know, I had Tony (setting) my base; on the other I had Barry pushing the pace to make sure the base was still good. So it was a total team effort and it was great.
Q: OK, well, I noticed this particular fight as opposed to four years ago you went to Europe significantly earlier, giving yourself more time onsite, if you will.
I wonder what's the advantage of showing up there earlier as opposed to following the same schedule you did four years ago?
Tony Thompson: Well, the advantage is -- you got to get on that jetlag. Jetlag is a real thing, you know, which is why the Klitschkos bring you over six days before. They know what they doing'. They're very smart and astute people. You can't blame 'em for that. It's up to you and your team to combat that intelligence with your own intelligence.
And my team, we learned from experience. We know that wasn't enough time. We know jetlag is still on, you know. So we came over a little bit early to get over the initial parts of the jetlag.
And then (inaudible) last week we started rebuilding the body back up now that we're used to it.
So, I mean, that's the reason for obviously coming over a little earlier. Smart move.