Veteran trainer and ESPN commentator Teddy Atlas is standing his ground regarding last year's comments in the aftermath of Jeff Horn's twelve round decision win over Manny Pacquiao to capture the WBO welterweight title.
After the victory, before a crowd of 51,000 in Brisbane, Horn was interviewed by Atlas for ESPN.
Atlas was highly critical of the victory and openly told Horn, on live television, that he didn't deserve to win the fight.
Atlas' outspoken nature got him pulled from the network's broadcast team for their live boxing events - but he handles some of their special features and pre-event coverage.
Atlas is firm - he did nothing wrong by openly stating that he felt Pacquiao got robbed - and that included the statements he made directly to Horn in the their post-fight interview.
"I have a responsibility to tell the people watching what I believe they should be told. And if that means that somebody got robbed, that’s what I’m supposed to tell them. Even though it’s not fashionable. Even though it’s not popular. Even though the people that hired me, it might not stand well with them," Atlas told Fox Sports.
“I shouldn’t be influenced because I have 50,000 Aussies around me as I’m saying what I’m saying. I shouldn’t be influenced by anything other than what I believe to be the truth. I didn’t take anything away from him. He won the title. And saying it with him in the ring ... wouldn’t it have been more impolite or incorrect if I stood there after 45 minutes of a broadcast saying that he I thought he lost the fight ... and then saying ‘you were great, congratulations champ?”
On Saturday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Horn will make a mandatory defense against Terence Crawford.
Atlas expects Crawford to knock Horn out in six rounds.
“I think Horn’s going to get knocked out in about six rounds,” Atlas said. “The only reason he’s going to have a chance to stretch the fight out at all is because Crawford is dealing with the most amount of inactivity in his career — 10 months. That’s probably going to effect him a little bit, at least early on.
“Horn’s got decent legs, and also his confidence with the right hand — those are his two best physical qualities. Between those factors I think it’s going to buy him some rounds. But, and I’m not saying this in a mocking way, Crawford is a much more talented fighter and also technically the better fighter. So I can’t see from a physical standpoint a way that Horn leaves the ring as champion.”