By Rick Reeno
Six-time world champion, Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero (31-1-1, 18 KOs), sat down with BoxingScene.com to discuss his upcoming fight with pound for pound king Floyd "Money" Mayweather Jr. (43-0, 26 KOs). The match is scheduled to headline a Showtime Pay-Per-View event on May 4th at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Mayweather's WBC welterweight championship will be at stake.
BoxingScene.com: You chased this opportunity for a long time. How does it feel to finally get it?
Guerrero: I feel good. I'm excited about it and now it's time to go to work. I earned this fight. He gave the fight to other fighters. That's where the pressure is going to come in on him, is because I earned this. I fought the right fights to be here, to be in this position.
BoxingScene.com: Two weeks go, when Mayweather tweeted that Devon Alexander was the frontrunner to fight him, did you start to think in back of your mind that Mayweather might be backing away from this fight and going in another direction?
Guerrero: Yeah, that went through my mind, him trying to duck the fight. It's happened throughout my career. I've been in the position of a mandatory, the number one challenger, and it happens over and over. It happened with [Juan Manuel] Marquez and Juan Diaz. It's happened all the way from featherweight up until now. That's always going through my mind. It crossed my mind that maybe he's going to be another one of those guys who will dodge me.
BoxingScene.com: When he tweeted that, there were all of these false rumors that you were trying to hold him up for more money and pricing yourself out.
Co-Manager Luis DeCubas Jr. cuts it: There was never a financial problem throughout the negotiations. Obviously when you're negotiating a fight of this magnitude, a Mayweather fight, you also have other agreements like with Golden Boy and the TV network deal they were working on. There are tons of things that we were dealing with. We are very happy with what Robert is getting. He is getting more than Juan Manuel Marquez did [in 2009]. We are really happy with the number Robert got. At no point did he want to take this fight for money. He's wanted this fight for a long time to prove that he's best in the world. He knows that when he beats Floyd Mayweather money will never be an issue.
BoxingScene.com: Do you think Mayweather is still the same fighter who beat guys like Oscar De La Hoya and Marquez?
Guerrero: No, not at all. I think he's slowed down a bit. With that being said, he is also a wiser and smarter Floyd Mayweather. All of the experience that he has, with guys like De La Hoya, and the fights that's been fighting, he's been fighting real smart.
BoxingScene.com: In some of his recent fights, he tends to go to the ropes a lot more than he ever did in the past and allows his opponents to come in with punches. Have you noticed that?
Guerrero: I noticed that a lot. I've noticed a bunch of other things too. I don't want to get into details, because I want to exploit that when we're in the ring. We're going to take advantage of every possible thing we can in the ring and that's how you beat someone like Floyd Mayweather.
BoxingScene.com: This huge multi-fight deal that he signed with Showtime has almost overshadowed the fight itself. Do you think this deal adds more pressure on him to perform in this fight?
Guerrero: Oh yeah. It just adds additional pressure on him by signing that contract to fight me, knowing that I'm a young guy and very hungry. That right there is the added pressure to him. Floyd Mayweather is going to come to fight, regardless of whether he's on ESPN, HBO or Showtime. He comes to fight. I really feel the pressure is on him by just getting in the ring with me.
BoxingScene.com: In your last match, Andre Berto tried to fight you in a similar fighting style to Mayweather. Is there anything that you can take from that fight and use in this fight?
Guerrero: No, they are totally different fighters. Berto just tried to be like Floyd, seeing how Floyd does it. I don't know what he was doing, he was crazy right there and that's why he got the beating he took. Two different fighters, two different minds in the ring. That's Floyd's game. That's not Berto's game and he found that out quick when his eye started shutting.
BoxingScene.com: You are fighting in Las Vegas, which is Floyd's hometown. There have been many questionable decisions in the last twelve months. Do you believe that you not only have to win the rounds, but win them from top to bottom, like you did in the fight with Berto, to avoid the judges scoring in the other direction?
Guerrero: That's the way I roll. I come out to win every round. I don't just come in to steal the round at the end, I come in to win the entire round and the whole fight. Vegas is my town. That's my place now. That's where I train. Like I've said, there is a new sheriff in town. I'll be taking care of business, it's my town now. It's time to run this guy out. It's time to run him out. He had his time on the top and now it's time to get knocked off and I'm the guy to do it.