Diaz, Bojado & Juarez press conference

20.11.03 – Three of boxing’s most highly regarded young stars – featherweight Rocky Juarez, junior welterweight Francisco “Panchito” Bojado and lightweight Juan Diaz – will appear in separate bouts on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING Saturday, Nov. 22, at 9 p.m. ET/PT. Juarez, 23, the 2000 Olympic Games silver medalist, will fight for his first title when he takes on WBO No. 4/WBC No. 10 featherweight contender, Hector Velazquez, in a 12-rounder for the WBC Continental Americas featherweight crown. Bojado, 20, will attempt to avenge his only pro defeat when he faces Juan Carlos Rubio in a 12-round bout for the WBC Continental Americas junior welterweight title. Diaz, who turned 20 on Sept. 17, will square off against Joel Perez in a 10-round lightweight match. SHOWTIME will televise the Main Events, Inc.-promoted fight card from Reliant Park in Houston.

ROCKY JUAREZ (18-0, 14 KOs)

“I am excited about fighting again in Houston on SHOWTIME. This fight is for my first title, so that is very exciting, too. There is no more pressure on me than usual, even with the belt on the line. I am trying to stay calm like always. Velazquez is a tough fighter, and this is another step up in competition, but I am confident and in good shape. If I keep winning, I think I will be ready to fight for a world title in 2004.’’


“The fact this is a rematch gives me all the motivation that I need. I do not want to take anything away from Rubio, but I had a lot of things going on outside the ring before our first fight. There were issues that I had to deal with. Those are behind me now and I only have to worry about my performances in the ring. A win is a win, so I really do not feel pressure to knock Rubio out. But if I get the opportunity, I will go for it.’’

JUAN CARLOS RUBIO (29-6-2, 10 KOs)

“I want to demonstrate that our first fight was not a fluke, and that I can beat him again. He can talk about outside distractions all he wants, but to me they are just excuses. We all have distractions we must deal with. I feel I am peaking and have never been in better shape. I do not think he is making a mistake fighting me again because he is a good fighter. The best fighter will win Saturday night.’’

JUAN DIAZ (22-0, 10 KOs)

“I expect a tough fight, so I have been training extra hard. I know Perez can really take a punch. It is always exciting to fight before the hometown fans, so I thank SHOWTIME and everyone involved for making it happen. I want to win this fight, take the rest of the year off and than, hopefully, in 2004 be ready to fight for a world title, or at least be high enough in the rankings to be close to fighting for one.’’

JOEL PEREZ (34-6-2, 19 KOs)

“About a year ago, I sparred with Diaz for a month so I know him very well. He is a very busy fighter but is not a big puncher. I think they took this fight off of what happened to me in my last fight when I lost. But I have had double the time to prepare for this and am ready to go. This is a great opportunity for me to get back on track and I am really confident. This could be the fight of the night.’’

Article posted on 20.11.2003

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