By James Blears
Mexican boxing maestro Juan Manuel Marquez is still hoping to tempt Ricky Hatton into a swansong battle. But first Juan must again overcome Juan "Baby Bull" Diaz, who he’s rematching at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on July 10th.
At a boxing event in Mexico City’s Hilton Hotel, in which Juan is promoting young and upcoming Mexican boxing talent, he explained to BoxingScene.com that he needed a bit of a break after last year's fight with Floyd Mayweather, for which he trained for more than six months. But he’s now ready to get back into the gym to sharpen up for Baby Bull, and the key factor this time around, must be to quicken his fighting pace.
Juan said there had been preliminary talks about a fight against Amir Khan. But why not Hatton in October or November at 140 pounds? He suggested he would prefer a Hatton clash because Ricky is a bigger name, and it’d be a great crowd pleasing fight of complimenting styles.
Juan also spoke of the friendly brotherly rivalry to reach four championships. He’s already clinched titles at featherweight, super feather and lightweight and still hankers after the super lightweight crown. He said it’s a dream, which can be realized by tremendous hard work.
Brother Rafael has won the bantamweight and super bantamweight world titles, takes on Israel Vazquez for the fourth and surely final time on May 22nd at the Staples Center in LA. It’ll be a featherweight bout. Both fighters plan to continue campaigning at this weight.
Juan insists that to win, Rafa must stick to his fight plan. He told BoxingScene Rafa mistakenly changed his style in the final round of his third titanic clash with Vazquez, and it cost him the fight. He says his brother has trained incredibly hard for this fight and the extra pounds will improve his punching power.