Boxing


Roger Mayweather Conference Call Transcript

20.04.07 - RICHARD SCHAEFER, CEO, GOLDENBOY PROMOTIONS : Thank you, Kelly, welcome and thank you for participating in today's call. It's the fourth actually and, you know, things are really heating up. Some of you might have seen, I hope most of you have seen the De La Hoya/Mayweather 24/7 show, the premier last Sunday..

We had an amazing rating. I mean, an amazing, amazing rating, so a lot of people saw that show. We are all very excited about the next one, which is going to be this Sunday. There are, as well, reruns of the first one, so in case you haven't seen it yet, make sure you check out HBO and see and catch the first episode to get ready for this coming Sunday for the second part.

Oscar and Floyd had their media days in the last week. Floyd had his yesterday, Oscar a week ago, amazing turnout in both camps. In Puerto Rico, we had over 100 media people from six different countries including the USA, England , Mexico, Venezuela, Germany and the Dominican Republic, and of course, Puerto Rico, so both of these days were a big success.

On today's conference call, we have a special treat. We're going to have the trainers of both camps on the call and I would like to introduce to you now Leonard Ellerbe, Floyd Mayweather's long-time advisor and confidante who is going to make some comments about camp and how everything is going.

And then he's going to turn it over to Floyd's long-time trainer, one of the most celebrated trainers in the sport today, Roger Mayweather. And then Roger will make some comments and then we are going to open it up for questions.

LEONARD ELLERBE, ADVISOR AND CONFIDANTE FOR FLOYD MAYWEATHER : Thank you, Richard. Training camp has been going great. Floyd is in phenomenal shape. This is the best condition physically that he's been in. Obviously, we know what's at stake.

This fight is a huge fight and we're just really looking forward to getting to the show on the 5 th of May and we're just ready to go. We've had some great sparring and like I said, mentally, physically, Floyd is ready to go. And I'll turn it over to Roger right now.

ROGER MAYWEATHER, TRAINER FOR FLOYD MAYWEATHER : Well, as Leonard said, his training is going well, so I guess all we're doing right now is waiting for the fight to happen. And I guess we'll see then.

KELLY SWANSON: OK, great. Operator, if we could open it up for questions. Thanks.

TOM STEWART, BANGOR DAILY NEWS: OK, hi. This question is for Leonard. And Leonard, I know you've worked with Floyd a long time. You've been with him in, you know, numerous training camps. What is it that you see as Floyd's greatest strength?

LEONARD ELLERBE: His ability to think. He's a thinking fighter and he's the smartest fighter out there. That's Floyd's greatest asset. It's not about -- not about who hit the hardest and, you know, all that stuff. He's the smartest fighter in all of boxing and in this particular fight, it's not going to come down to who weighs the most and all that because weight don't win fights. It's going to come down to who's the most skillful fighter and who's the smartest fighter. That's what it's going to come down to.

DAN RAFAEL, ESPN: Hey everybody. Leonard, I have a question for you. I've know you for a long time. I've seen you at all of Floyd's fights that I've been to for many years and, you know, I've never really known the background of how you and Floyd have come to be together. You know, you're almost inseparable it seems.

Can you describe just a little bit about how it is that you came to the point where you are his most trusted confidante?

LEONARD ELLERBE: Actually, I met Floyd through Roger. I've known Roger for about 27 -- between 25 and 27 years and I actually met Floyd when he was probably about 13 or 14, when he came out to visit Roger many, many years ago. And we got ...

DAN RAFAEL: Was it in Michigan?

LEONARD ELLERBE: No, in Vegas.

DAN RAFAEL: Oh, OK.

LEONARD ELLERBE: And then we got reacquainted through his Uncle Jeff because I've known Roger and Jeff for many, many years and shortly after that, then I started working with him. So I've been a long-time friend of the family for many, many years. We just took it from there.

DAN RAFAEL: What is it though about it that has, in your mind, enabled Floyd to put more faith and trust and that sort of thing into you as opposed to any of the other different people that he may have worked with over the years?

LEONARD ELLERBE: Well, probably because we both come from the same background. We both come from an inner city environment and we both know what the struggle is all about. And I think why he trusted me so much is because I tell him the truth.

I mean, if he does something wrong, I tell him, you did wrong, Floyd, and I don't tell him what he wants to hear a lot of times and that's what's really great about our relationship. You know, if we have a disagreement, we don't bring our disagreement out in public, you know.

A lot of times we disagree on things, but you know, at the end of the day, you know, I might be right about something and sometimes I might be, you know, slightly off on something. But like I said, he knows that he's going to get it straightforward from me.

I'm not going to sugar coat anything and like I said, he trusts me and he respects me and like I said, that's why we have a great relationship.

DAN RAFAEL: Thank you, Leonard. I appreciate that.

GEORGE ROSENWASSER, THE VALLEY NEWS: Hi, this question is for Roger. Roger, how are you?

ROGER MAYWEATHER: I'm fine. How are you?

GEORGE ROSENWASSER: I'm good. My question is -- this is a little offbeat, but you were a great fighter. You were a champion. You fought probably the greatest Mexican fighter of our generation in Julio Cesar Chavez. My question to you is how in your prime, how do you think you'd fare against Oscar De La Hoya?

ROGER MAYWEATHER : In my prime?

GEORGE ROSENWASSER: In your prime.

ROGER MAYWEATHER: He's couldn't whip me in my prime. Listen, he struggled with Whitaker, didn't he?

GEORGE ROSENWASSER: Yes, he did.

ROGER MAYWEATHER: Whitaker was past his prime, right? And hadn't fought in a year so what the heck is he going to do with me? He ain't a better boxer than Whitaker, so I wouldn't have no problem with De La Hoya anyway.

ROBERT MORALES (LOS ANGELES DAILY NEWS): Hey, you know, Roger, is there anything at all about Oscar De La Hoya that you have talked to Floyd more about or that you think Floyd should be concerned about?

ROGER MAYWEATHER: Well, you know, you've got to understand about boxing. First off, Floyd's been fighting since he was a baby, number one. So there ain't much really you can teach him about boxing because he understands boxing very well.

Obviously, everybody knows that because he wouldn't be in this position if he didn't know boxing. He wouldn't be fighting a weight class at 154 pounds, coming from 130 pounds, get in this position to whip De La Hoya. So the thing about Floyd is that you don't have to tell him what to do because he knows boxing.

That's all he ever did all his life, so he's not like some kid you have to say, old man, you need to run, or you need to do this. He's going to do that anyway, so he's an easy guy to train because of the fact he's going to do what he has to do. But there are certain things he can't do on his own. He can't hold his own mitt, can he? Somebody has to do that with him and plan a strategy for him. .

That's my job. My job is the one who sets the plan on what he needs to do to win, whatever he needs to do to whip De La Hoya's ass. That's my job. So he's going to see it -- he's going to stay with the plan that I set out for him because he knows that's the best plan and that's the plan that got him where he's at today.

He understands boxing. He understands the plan and he's going to make -- he's going to make the adjustments that he needs to make during the time of the fight if there needs to be one made. He's going to find out much -- how much can he really fight. Don't nobody know how much De La Hoya can really fight.

ROBERT MORALES: Right.

ROGER MAYWEATHER: When he gets his ass whipped this time, he's fighting a guy much smarter than him. But remember one thing, what wins fights? Strength don't win fights. Strength don't win fights. Ability wins fights.

And there is nobody out there with the ability that Floyd has in boxing, so that will win the fight, and I'm sure that May 5 th, that will be why Floyd wins, that will be the win. The guy with the most feeling (ph) is going to win.

ROBERT MORALES: All right, man, thank you very much, great answer.

LANCE PUGMIRE (LA TIMES): Hey, I just wanted to ask you with the presence of Floyd, Sr. in camp, how's that going? How are you ...

ROGER MAYWEATHER: It isn't about me at all.

LANCE PUGMIRE: Are you reliant on his . . .

ROGER MAYWEATHER: He can be -- he can be there -- he can be there, he can be at home in a rocking chair, I don't give a (expletive.) The bottom line is this, we're going to win the fight regardless. I don't give a (expletive) about who we have in the gym. I don't train him for his daddy.

I don't train him based on who's there or who ain't there. And if he's in the corner, I wouldn't give a shit either. The bottom line is this, skill wins fights. I know enough about boxing. I fought more fights than my brother had.

So I don't need to ask his opinion on how to win because number one, Floyd got there based on what I've done, not what the (expletive) he's done. He may have set the ground plans for Floyd, but Floyd's on Pay-Per-View because of me, not because of his daddy.

But the thing about it, I don't need to talk about his daddy because the bottom line is I ain't got shit to talk about him anyway. If you want to ask him a question, then you need to call him, don't call me.

LANCE PUGMIRE: So you're not -- you're not reliant on any kind of insights then? You're not asking for any assistance at all from him? You don't want any assistance ...

ROGER MAYWEATHER: What do I need to ask when I know too much myself. I fought 27 World champions and what's he going to tell me? I fought more World champions than him. So what is he going to tell me?

LANCE PUGMIRE: Why is he there?

ROGER MAYWEATHER: Why is he there? Because that's his son. I can't tell him not to be with his son. That's my brother. It ain't like I hate him, but that has nothing to do with -- that's his son. His son is the one taking the risk, not me, but not him. So it's not about that. We're still brothers, remember.

He was my brother before Floyd was ever born. He was my brother. Regardless of what that (INAUDIBLE), I don't mean because we're in the same place and we have to get along about certain things, so we have different opinions about certain things. So the bottom line is -- I mean, that's his daddy.

So I ain't going to never tell nobody to stay away from their daddy because I wouldn't want nobody to tell me to stay away from my daddy. That's my daddy, so he's the one who gave me life. Without him, where would I be? So the bottom line is he's still my brother.

LANCE PUGMIRE: OK.

ROGER MAYWEATHER: Regardless of what people think or what people say, I disagree. If we're doing something together, we're going to have disagreements. We're going to have disagreements. I'm the one who's doing the training, so I don't worry about the disagreement that he has with me because I'm the one who training him.

LANCE PUGMIRE: As Floyd's trainer though, don't you want to have access to all the knowledge that you can possibly have? I mean, he's trained Oscar.

ROGER MAYWEATHER: Listen, listen, listen, my brother can train Muhammad Ali. I mean, you know, that don't make no difference because he trained Muhammed Ali. Remember one thing, remember this, you guys need to remember one thing, I know boxing. I had 70 something (expletive) fights.

I had way more fights than my brother, so why do I need to get my brother's opinion about how to beat De La Hoya when I trained Floyd to beat the last 37? Huh? Then why would I need Floyd's opinion? Did he beat them with him or did he beat him with me? Did he beat Gatti with Floyd or did he beat him with me?
Did he beat Zab Judah with him or did he beat him with me? All right then, what the (expletive) do I need to ask his opinion for? I don't need to ask nobody's opinion. I know how to train a fighter. I've been doing that all my life.

LANCE PUGMIRE: OK.

ROGER MAYWEATHER: I was doing that when I was a kid. That's why I'm the best in the world at what I do. You don't never see a person do what I do, not with fighters, you won't.

LANCE PUGMIRE: Yes, yes.

ROGER MAYWEATHER: I do what I want to do. That's why we're good. He's good because he believes in his own talent. You have to have belief in yourself regardless of what I tell you, you still have to have the belief to do it. And you have the belief to trust in what I say. That's all it is.

LANCE PUGMIRE: Is it making -- is it making for an awkward situation, Floyd, Sr. being around?

ROGER MAYWEATHER: It don't make it awkward for me.

LANCE PUGMIRE: OK.

ROGER MAYWEATHER: It don't bother me one way or the other. He can be there, he can't be there, don't matter, don't matter to me. I train him so it don't matter.

LANCE PUGMIRE: And he's not trying to insert any opinions that you're uncomfortable with him trying to ...

ROGER MAYWEATHER: No.

TRAE THOMPSON (FT. WORTH STAR) : Roger, hey, people have a certain perception of your nephew. Is there one thing people don't understand about Floyd or do you see lots of things that people say or just the way they kind of talk about him or perceive him that you're like, no, that's way wrong?

ROGER MAYWEATHER: Well, I mean, what are they saying about him?

TRAE THOMPSON: Well, I mean . . .

ROGER MAYWEATHER: I don't know. I mean, I don't know what you're saying.

TRAE THOMPSON: OK, well, let me rephrase it then. Is there -- is there -- is there something about him that people may misunderstand?

ROGER MAYWEATHER: The only thing that people need to understand about Floyd is that Floyd is the best fighter in the world. He's proven that, so when people say that, people get, oh man, this guy can beat you

TRAE THOMPSON: Right.

ROGER MAYWEATHER: OK then, so a person has an opinion. If I say I'm the best at what I do, if he says he the best at what he do, he means it. He proves it all the time, don't he?

TRAE THOMPSON: Right.

ROGER MAYWEATHER: There's Michael Jordan. He's been retired for about five years, but you still want to play like him. There ain't never been a player that played like him and a player win that many championships in a row like him. He's a guy who takes the first shot. He's a guy who takes the last shot.

So the bottom line is that he's already proved what he can do, but it ain't no different. Ali saying, I'm the greatest, I'm the greatest heavyweight. People are going to deny it as they want to do, but Ali is the greatest heavyweight in the world in boxing. That's what he do, but he ain't the greatest fighter.

The greatest fighter on the planet is Sugar Ray Robinson. No, not Rocky Marciano, I say Sugar Ray Robinson. That's the greatest fighter on the planet, so if a guy say he is good and he's the best at what he do, the public can decide, oh well, he can't be that good. Why? Because you don't believe he that good?

When Floyd beat De La Hoya? People will say, man, I didn't think he could whip De La Hoya's ass like that. That's what they'll say. But then most people don't know shit about boxing anyway, so it don't make no difference about what they say because they don't know nothing about boxing.

TRAE THOMPSON: One other thing too, Roger, with Floyd's talent or his ability, do you ever see any new things or does he surprise you with just the way he goes about or sees things in the ring?

ROGER MAYWEATHER: Well, he's always going to surprise you with different things because remember one thing, anytime you see a guy box all the time, you're going to see new things about him and you'll make adjustments because certain guys, like if he's fighting a certain guy, I'd say, you need to do this or you need to do that.

And then he'll make another move in there, and I've seen things that I didn't see before -- because I was locked up for six months. When I came out, I wanted to see how he was working with guys that were much bigger than him. But he always fights guys much bigger than him anyway, but I wanted to see how he was doing fighting guys much bigger than him. But I've already seen that. I've seen what I was by what I seen.

So with that alone, just seeing what I seen over the past couple of weeks that I've been out, I'm going to see the same thing in the fight. I don't think the fight is going to be no different from what I've seen -- from what I've seen in the ring the last couple of weeks.

EDDIE GOLDMAN (SECONDS OUT RADIO): Pretty good. I remember before the fight that Floyd had with Arturo Gatti when a lot of people gave Gatti a chance. You were pretty clear that . . .

ROGER MAYWEATHER : Man, man, man, man. Gatti ain't (expletive). Gatti from the beginning, he's ain't never been (expletive.) Don't get me wrong. He's a good club level fighter, but he just that.

EDDIE GOLDMAN: Right. So where do you see Oscar in all of this because do you think that Oscar has any chance in this fight?

ROGER MAYWEATHER: Oh, anybody got a chance. I'm not going to compare because they are two different fighters. Now you guys are talking about two different guys. Now you've got a guy with skill. He got Olympic background. He's a gold medalist. That don't mean nothing, but he's a gold medalist, so of course, he has an opportunity, he has a good chance.

But the only real chance that he really got is them judges because it ain't going to be on skill. It ain't going to be on skill or nothing that he got a chance. Don't get me wrong, De La Hoya isn't a bad fighter.

He's a good fighter. I'm not going to say De La Hoya is great, because I know he ain't, you know, but the thing about it, the thing about this is he's fighting the best fighter. I'm not talking about weight class. I'm not talking about what size they weigh, whether the guy weighs 54 or the guy weighs 160 don't mean (expletive).

He's fighting the best fighter out there in this generation today. He's fighting the best fighter out there period. So that's what you have to deal with. I'm not talking about no weight class or he got to be 54 pounds or he got to be 60. Henry Armstrong, would never have won the featherweight, he never would have won the welterweight (ph) and lightweight.

And for the middleweight championship of the world, he was 126 pounds, wasn't he? OK. Did he win the heavyweight championship of the world? Did he win the heavyweight championship of the world? Skill wins fights. It has nothing to do with what a guy weighs.

It has to do with skill and Floyd is the most skilled athlete out there today and probably the last -- the only guy that come close to hitting my nephew was (INAUDIBLE) in boxing. (INAUDIBLE). He the only one that can match him probably as far as with skill in boxing. There ain't another one.

There ain't going to be another one like him probably come in another 10 or 20 years.

RICHARD SCHAEFER: Great, thank you so much, Roger, Leonard, for being part of this conference call. We'll see you in Las Vegas in 17 days to be exact and we would like now to introduce the training team from Oscar.

Article posted on 21.04.2007



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