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Joel Diaz on Bradley, Broner, Guerrero, Hatton, Porter

By Chris Robinson

Last week, I swung by the Indio Boys and Girls Club Southern California to check out former two-time lightweight champion Julio Diaz in training for his Dec. 15 bout with rising welterweight talent Shawn Porter.

Following his light workout session, I caught up with Diaz’s older brother Joel, known by many in the boxing community as the head trainer of WBO welterweight champion Timothy Bradley.

As I spoke with Diaz, there were three storylines I wanted to cover.

The first was his take on Julio’s chances against Porter, who he will be facing on the Amir Khan-Carlos Molina undercard at the LA Sports Arena. Despite all of his talents, Julio is a heavy underdog heading into the fight at age 32 yet Joel is oozing confidence ahead of the match.

I was also looking for some updates on Bradley, who has relatively been staying out the public’s eye following his split-decision victory over Manny Pacquiao on June 9. Many felt that Bradley deserved to lose the fight and Diaz seems uncertain what their future holds at the exact moment.

And finally, I was sure to get Diaz’s thoughts on newly-crowned WBC lightweight champion Adrien Broner’s recent virtuoso performance in halting former titlist Antonio DeMarco in under eight heats on Nov. 17. Having unsuccessfully led Vicente Escobedo into battle against Broner in July, Diaz has the utmost respect for Broner and revealed what it is going to take to defeat the Cincinnati, Ohio marvel.

Also included in our conversation was Diaz’s take on Robert Guerrero’s upset over Andre Berto as well as the spirited yet ultimately disappointing comeback of former junior welterweight king Ricky Hatton.

Read below for Diaz’s thoughts…

Why Shawn Porter is in trouble…
“I just think he’s in trouble because he’s taking the fight with Julio thinking he’s already done. But we only know what happened in his fights that he lost. It was a weight issue. We really sacrificed to make the weight in those fights. Now, at this weight, he’s really, really strong. I’ll give you an example. Look at Robert Guerrero. At that weight, he’s a beast. I just think that Julio winning two fights in a row by knockout, against big guys, Hector Sanchez and Henry Aurad, those guys are tough; I just think that Shawn Porter is a great fighter, has a lot of speed, very fighter. But stepping in the ring with a guy like Julio Diaz, who has that experience, has the mobility, and the ability to hurt you, I just think this is going to be a tough fight for Shawn.”

Seeing Julio back on his feet…
“I hope [Porter] doesn’t take it light, because it’s going to be a great fight. Julio is back on his feet again. He wants to make his career back to another world championship. He’s very dedicated. He’s been training since after his last fight, he was right back in the gym and he’s getting stronger and stronger every time. I just think that, the way I know Julio and the way I see Julio, he don’t want to win rounds, he just wants to win fights. He’s telling me that he’s not going to go the distance. Because, going the distance, that’s not going to favor him. Because Shawn Porter has a great team behind him and he just feels he’s going to finish the fight early.”

Assessing Shawn Porter…
“He has great speed, but I don’t think he has the power to hurt Julio, and I’ve seen Julio fight great fighters that have a lot of speed and if they don’t hurt him, he builds that confidence to break you. And he’ll break you as the rounds go. And I just think the first couple rounds is going to be a little tough to adjust to Shawn. But after the third round, once Julio feels him, if you don’t hurt Julio in the early rounds, it’s going to be a long night for you.”

Not surprised that Robert Guerrero handed Andre Berto his second defeat…
“It was a great fight. I [saw] a different Robert, and going back to the experience that I had with my brother, I know that Robert fighting at 135, it was hard for him. And moving up to 147, he’s a big boy. He’s a big, strong guy. I mean, Andre Berto, a natural welterweight, couldn’t even move him back. But I wasn’t surprised. I was watching the fight and right away, Robert had a great plan. He had a plan not to let Andre use his speed and ability and he took it to him. He smothered him and took his confidence down.”

Ricky Hatton’s 9th round knockout loss to Vyacheslav Senchenko…
“I saw the fight and I just think that Ricky was too excited. Ricky was excited coming back from his long layoff and he wanted to impress his crowd. He started too fast, he missed a lot of punches, and at his age already and with that time off, he should have paced himself. He should have paced himself and waited a little more in the early rounds. I just think he wore himself out soon.”

The latest with Tim Bradley…
“Well, Tim was in the gym for about a month last month. He was here training because he had Dec. 15, but I don’t know, things with his managers, his promoters, they didn’t work out. When the fight on the 15th fell through, he just took some time off again and enjoyed the holidays. I just spoke to him a couple days ago and I guess going to meet with Top Rank sometime this week. We’ll know what’s going to happen. I know he has a date for February 9. An opponent, we don’t know. That’s what he’s said. He’s going to go talk to them personally to see what’s going to happen.”

If Bradley would have lost to Pacquiao…
“Well, it’s just hard. Sometimes I think we would have got more credulity if we would have lost to Pacquiao. We would have had more options out there than just walking away with a win from Pacquiao. Right now, there’s been a lot of offers for Tim, like Lamont Peterson, Alvarado, and a few others. Right now, we don’t know. I really don’t communicate with him much. I just keep my spot and give him his space. I know that when he trains, he trains extremely hard and when he has time off, I just let him enjoy his family and his time. Once in a while, when something comes up or there’s talks about something, he calls me and he asks for my advice.”

Not opposed to Lamont Peterson…
“When they offered Lamont Peterson, I was ok with it. I told him ‘Tim, you beat him already’. You beat him when he was undefeated. He had something to fight for, which was his record, to keep it clean. You beat him and I think you can beat him again’. Their thoughts are a little different and I respect what they think and their opinions. I just keep my spot as a trainer. I just keep it in the gym and I let the manger and the promoter deal with it.”

Hoping the Top Rank-Golden Boy feud won’t prevent Bradley from any big fights…
“It’s just sad that these promoters can’t work with each other, because there’s so many great fights out there that can happen and be made, but due to the fact that these promoters don’t get along with each other, it enables these fights to happen. But I think it would be great; it would be great for Top Rank to negotiate with Golden Boy and make fights happen. Danny Garcia is a great fighter; he’s proven himself and he has a lot of power. Lucas Matthysse as well. And a few others in the Golden Boy camp that can be matched up with fighters from Top Rank like Tim Bradley and Brandon Rios. The world wants to see fights like that. And they’re not happening because they’re not getting along.”

Ready for whatever they throw…
“Those are the things, like I said, that [prevent] fights [from happening]. But it would be great. Tim fought Pacquiao. A lot of people were not happy with the decision, but like I said, everybody expected Manny Pacquiao to take Tim out in a couple rounds, and Tim was in his face all night. It wasn’t Tim’s fault that Manny Pacquiao couldn’t pull the trigger with Tim. Tim did his thing, he fought, he pulled the fight through, he fought hard. And at the end of the day, we feel like we stole something from the world. But that’s the way it is. Boxing is like this and we’ve got to move on. Right now, we’re at the point where whatever they throw at us, we’ve got to get. I’m here in the gym, waiting for Tim to come back and waiting for his manager and his promoter to give him an opponent and a date.”

Impressed by Adrien Broner…
“Adrien Broner, he’s at another level. That guy, I think he’s just born for this. That kid so much natural talent, that I haven’t seen in years. Because he’s not a fighter that runs, he’s not a fighter that moves, he’s in front of you and he’ll break you. He has power and he’s very smart. He has lots of confidence in himself. He believes in his ability of fighting and his potential, his power. That’s what makes him great.”

An ill-fated plan for facing Broner…
“When he fought Vicente, we put a plan together. Every trainer in the world always puts a plan together to go to war, but it’s hard when you’re fighting a guy that is strong, smart, and is full of confidence. Even though that day he was heavier than Vicente, we tried everything possible to break him but it was impossible. He was too strong for Vicente. But it was a lose-lose situation for us. Even though Vicente did the weigh-in and did everything right, we just had to fight. That’s when I came in and I just had to protect my fighter.”

What it will take to defeat Adrien Broner…
“You’re asking me a question that a lot of people have asked me, but it’s hard. Like I say, when I trained Vicente, we tried pushing him back, attack him to the body, but his defense is so good. It’s hard to beat a guy like him. There’s going to be somebody in the future who might find a way to beat him, I just think it has to be somebody who matches his style, because styles make fights. There’s going to be somebody with a very awkward style that is going to match that and is going to give him a hard time like Ponce de Leon did. Ponce de Leon doesn’t look like he’s a great fighter, until you are in there with him. His style is a good style for him. Adrien Broner, right now, at 135 and 140, it’s hard to pick a fighter that can beat him.”

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User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by ShoulderRoll on 12-04-2012

[QUOTE=ddangerous;12768464]Some good stuff from Diaz. Liked what he had to say about Bradley and Broner.[/QUOTE] Yeah, he had a good take on Adrien Broner was spot on in analyzing what happened to Hatton. Ricky came out too fired up, especially…

Comment by flipfist on 12-04-2012

Just read that Floyd plans to fight in February. Maybe Bradley - Floyd?

Comment by JeanGrey on 12-04-2012

respect here....good comments from Diaz concerning certain things....sad but its true that if they would have took the lost they would have been in a better spot but i wouldn't take the lsot neither so its a lose-lose.... right on…

Comment by Kilrain on 12-04-2012

tim was in his face all night my as s

Comment by chargerhemi06 on 12-04-2012

Floyd is scared of manny. Lmao!

Post a Comment/View More User Comments (6)
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