Sugar Shane Mosley: ďI knock people out. I got pretty good punching power, even Floyd was almost a victimĒ
by Geoffrey Ciani - This weekís 81st edition of On the Ropes Boxing Radio featured an exclusive interview with former three division champion Sugar Shane Mosley. Earlier this week news emerges that Mosley will be squaring off against Sergio Mora on September 18 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. Mosley is coming off of a unanimous decision loss against Floyd Mayweather Junior back on May 1. Mosley spoke about that fight, his upcoming fight with Mora, his future plans, and various other aspects of the current landscape in boxing. The following is a complete transcript from that interview.
Jenna J: Anyways guys, it's time for our forth guest of this weekís show, he is the former WBA welterweight champion, he is none other than Sugar Shane Mosley. Hey there, Shane.
Sugar Shane Mosley: Hey, how are you doing?
Jenna: Iím doing fine. Weíre happy to have you back on the show.
Mosley: Thank you. Itís good to be back on the show, thank you..
Jenna: Shane, it was announced that youíll be facing off against Sergio ďThe SnakeĒ Mora on September 18 at the Staples Center in LA. How do you feel about this match-up?
Mosley: I feel itís going to be a good match-up. Being that Sergio beat Vernon Forrest one time before and Vernonís got the victory back, heís a worthy opponent. Itís going to be a great fight at the Staples Center and all the fans will see my comeback fight. It will be great.
Jenna: Now Sergio Mora has not fought at this weight class since his rematch loss to the late great Vernon Forrest. What things do you see yourself having to do to share the same success that Forrest had against him?
Mosley: Well, I think that I have to use a lot of movement, heís a little bit bigger, good movement, speed and power, and using my advantage of experience.
Jenna: Your last bout, Shane, was obviously against the pound for pound number one guy in the sport, that would be Floyd Mayweather Junior. Can you tell us a little bit about that bout and how you feel it went?
Mosley: Floyd won a unanimous decision. I had some pretty good moments in the fight where he got a couple of good shots in but for the most part it was his night and he was victorious.
Jenna: In the second round of that fight you had him hurt and it looked like you might be able to stop him. Did you think you had him at that moment?
Mosley: Yeah, I thought I was one punch away from it being an early night but he was able to get out of the way and survive. He was able to get himself back together and outbox me.
Jenna: Now Shane, youíre moving back up to the 154 pound division for this fight with Mora. Why did you decide to return to this weight class?
Mosley: Just to get in the ring again and get a fight. I mean I was going for a fight with Andre Berto but we couldnít work out the financial stuff. We couldnít get that together so we didnít make that fight happen. So this fight right here with Sergio Mora, heís a good contender and actually won The Contender and itís going to be a great fight in LA. Heís from LA, Iím from LA, so itís another LA fight.
Jenna: When you look at the 154 pound division, who do you see out there as someone you would like to match up with if you are successful against Mora?
Mosley: Well you have Sergio Mora, you have Sergio Martinez, you have Miguel Cotto, thereís a possible match-up with Pacquiao if Floyd and Pacquiao canít make it happen. So thereís a match-up with Pacquiao. Thereís a few guys out there who I can tangle with.
Jenna: Would you consider a rematch with Miguel Cotto to be your main focus at this weight class?
Mosley: There would definitely focus there because everybody would like to see that type of fight, a rematch between me and Miguel. Itís kind of hard sometimes because we have different promoters. Sometimes itís hard to match it up. Also, thereís a rematch with Margarito. Iíd fight Cotto or Margarito. I mean there are a lot of round robins I can be in there with at that weight class.
Jenna: Well Shane, weíre also joined by my co-host Geoff Ciani. Geoff.
Geoffrey Ciani: Hi Shane. Itís a pleasure to have you back ďOn the RopesĒ again.
Mosley: Thank you.
Ciani: Speaking to your jump to 154 and some of your possible fights there, Iím wondering, do you consider this move to 154 a permanent move where youíll fight the rest of your career there or would you still consider fighting fights at 147 if the right fights were available?
Mosley: Yeah, I mean if the right fight was available I can see myself fighting at 147. Itís not that I canít make the weight. I can make the weight. I think I get away with a lot moving up to 154 or heavier weight classes because of the punching power that I carry. Iím able to nullify a lot of the weight with the punching power. I think thatís an advantage for me.
Ciani: Now Shane, I want to return to your last fight for a couple of questions here. Iím curious, I think that you as a fighter you usually have a pretty good idea of how badly you have an opponent hurt when you catch him with some good shots, and you definitely caught Floyd with some good shots there. How badly did you think that you had him hurt during that round?
Mosley: I think he was one punch away from being knocked out.
Ciani: You appeared to be a little bit uncharacteristically winded it looked from my untrained eye. Did you get a little tired in that fight and if so, do you think that the long layoff you had between the Margarito fight and that fight may have had a bigger impact on your performance than you would have imagined?
Mosley: No, I wasnít fatigued or tired at all whatsoever. That wasnít the problem. The problem was the leaning on my neck. It got real tight and then I couldnít throw any punches after that. I wasnít tired. Physically, I wasnít tired. I was just tight from all the leaning on my neck, from being on my neck, and I guess thatís what happened and I think it happens to a lot of fighters so thatís part of boxing. I wasnít prepared for that tactic.
Ciani: Now do you think that perhaps maybe you would have been a little bit better prepared for Floyd if the fight with Berto that you were supposed to have in January had gone through had it not been for the earthquake in Haiti?
Mosley: I mean there are a lot of different excuses you can come up with. I thought I was prepared very well. That night wasnít my night. I landed the shots I needed to land, I just couldnít finish it off and Floyd did an excellent job of recovering and doing what he needed to do to win the fight. Like I said, the only thing that happened was if you look at the tape, there was a lot of jumping on my head and my neck and a lot of that. Thatís what I didnít work for. I didnít work for preparing my neck for that type of fight, which I should have, because I watched him to do it to a lot of other fighters but thatís down on me. That was my mistake and he benefitted from that and he won.
Ciani: Was there anything about Floyd that surprised you that night?
Mosley: No, I pretty much thought that was going to be Floyd. It was a fight, again, that I knew exactly what to do and what not to do with him. I thought I would be a lot more successful with what I wanted to do. Like I said, that one thing that was in the fight, thatís what happened. When youíre in the middle of the fight you canít say oh I want to rest my neck because I canít throw punches. It was something that he did and he was successful with it. Thatís all a part of fighting.
Jenna: Shane, we were talking before about some of the matches you could have at the 154 pound weight class but ultimately, what fight are you most interested in getting?
Mosley: Well, Sergio Martinez is the middleweight champion. Then you got Pacquiao thatís out there. Thereís Cotto, thereís Mararito again, and Winky Wrightís still looming out there. Thereís a lot of different fights that can be fought that people might want to see. Iím in the equation and Iím not done yet. Iím not finished. Iím ready to go out there and do my thing and entertain the people and the fans.
Jenna: Now Shane, you turn 39 years old by the time you face Mora. How much longer do you see yourself fighting?
Mosley: Until I feel I donít want to do it anymore. I mean I might be fighting at age 45 like Bernard. I donít know yet. I got to get some money back into my pocket and stuff like that. I still have the physical ability, I still have the know-how, and I still can beat these top fighters so Iím going to keep on fighting until I canít do it anymore.
Jenna: Alright, now letís talk about the sport for a second. You obviously mentioned Pacquiao before and the fight that everyone wants to see now is a fight between Pacquiao and Mayweather. From everything youíve seen in the negotiations that theyíre going through and your negotiations, of course, with Floydódo you think that fight will happen?
Mosley: Well, I donít know. I havenít really heard from Floyd and what he wants to do and Pacquiao it seems like has some health problems over there in the Philipines, so none of these guys look like theyíre getting ready to get in the ring anytime soon. There can be a fight maybe sometime in mid-2011 before they decide to start getting ready for or decide to even fight. By then I might even have two fights. Weíll see what happens. I donít know. Itís very questionable whether this fight will happen or can happen at this point.
Jenna: After having faced Floyd Mayweather Junior, how do you feel Pacquiao would do against him?
Mosley: You know styles make fights. Pacquiao has good hitting power and southpaws tend to give Floyd more problems than right handers. With Pacquiao being a lot smaller, Floyd might be able to stay away and outbox him but Pacquiao is like a little Tasmanian Devile and he throws a lot of punches so itís going to be a very tough assignment for Floyd to stay away. It can go either way. Itís going to be a great fight, a top notch fight.
Jenna: Alright Shane, if I put you on the spot right now, if you had to pick the winneróI know itís a tough fight, I know you think it could go either wayówho would you think would take it down?
Mosley: Honestly, I couldnít even tell you. I couldnít tell who it can be because like I said styles make fights. The success that Floyd had with me in some of the exchanges he might not have that same success with Pacquiao because Pacquiaoís a lot shorter and can slip under a lot of stuff and Pacquiao is a southpaw. There are different things in the equation that Floyd doesnít like and Pacquiao can give him a lot of problems with. Iím not saying that Pacquiao is a better fighter or that Floydís a better fighter, itís just that different styles make the fight. That type of style for both fighters, itís going to be an exciting fight to watch. Itís a fight just to watch so I couldnít say whether Floydís going to win or Pacquiaoís going to win. If I had to choose, Iíd just watch and see.
Jenna: Alright now I brought this up before and I said if youíre successful against Mora, who would you go to next and you mentioned Sergio Martinez. Now heís actually currently the middleweight champion. Letís say a fight can be made with him. Would you consider fighting him at that weight class to make the fight happen?
Mosley: Yeah, I mean heís the middleweight champion. Weíll probably fight at a catch weight, 155 or 156 or something like that. Weíll work it out. Iím sure heís available and willing to fight. Actually, he was willing to fight me at 60-40. That was surprising to me that I could get a 60-40 fight with Sergio Martinez but I couldnít get one with Andre Berto. That was shocking to me.
Ciani: Shane Iím wondering, going forward, are you still planning on working with Naazim Richardson in your upcoming fight with Mora?
Mosley: Definitely. Definitely, heíll definitely be in the corner. Heís an outstanding coach.
Ciani: Now what you say are some of the things that Naazim has been able to do to help your game evolve? After you were already an established champion, a great fighter for all these years, a lot of times fighters kind of get stuck in their ways. What about Naazim was able to help your game progress even at your age with all the time youíve already had in the sport?
Mosley: Well itís bringing me back to the basics of things. Heís a younger coach and itís kind of like going back in time, especially with the ways that heís just training and getting you out of that rut of just doing the same old things. Weíre doing different things. The younger guys come up learning to do different things. So itís not like heís teaching me anything different, weíre just doing different things, new things. Itís all based on the style of fighting I like to fight and the way I like to fight. Thatís whatís making me seem like Iíve changed or not changed or whatever. Itís just different things, itís a new feel.
Ciani: Now Shane, you mentioned earlier and I hadnít actually thought of that possibility, but you mentioned that Winky Wright is floating around in that weight area and that heís still actively looking for fights. I hadnít thought of that, but is a third fight with Winky something that you would be interested in?
Mosley: Well I mean it might be something that I would try. I mean not exactly right now, right now, but that would be a possibility. Winkyís also a great legendary fighter. Heís 154-160. He can definitely get into the mix with all this stuff. I like his style and the way he fights. Heís a tough competitor and he always comes to fight. Definitely I could see him in the mix of all of us coming together and fighting. It would be great.
Ciani: Another name mentioned Shane a couple of times here was Miguel Cotto and I was wondering, (1) what you thought of his last performance against Yuri Foreman and (2) what you think about the pairing between him and Hall of Fame trainer Emanuel Steward?
Mosley: Miguel Cotto looked very good. I liked watching it. Heís moving good and heís pressing good. Itís like he was rejuvenated. Itís the type of style fighter that heís fighting that didnít have much punching power but at the same time he looked very good. I liked what I had seen. Working with Emanuel Steward, I mean I guess itís a plus. Heís a Hall of Fame trainer, he has a lot of tricks, and he knows a lot of different fighters and times so Iím sure that Miguel is going to benefit a lot from Emanuel Steward.
Jenna: Shane, touching back a little bit about your career, the biggest fight to ever place at the Staples Center was the fight between you and Oscar De La Hoya at 147 and itís a fight that people still talk about. Can you tell us a little bit about that match-up you had with him?
Mosley: It was an exciting fight. We fought as kids and we grew up in the same neighborhood. Heís from LA, I was a little further down but we used to go to the same gyms and spar together and stuff like that. It was a great match-up. We both knew each other so when we got in there we knew what to do. We knew how to bring it on. He gave a little and I gave a little and it went back and forth and was just a great fight. The people were there, the energy in the crowd was great. There were a lot of celebrities and fans. The Staples Center has always been good to me even with Oscar and Margarito.
Jenna: You ended up fighting him again though three years later. Obviously the first fight was close, but some people consider this fight to be a little bit controversial. When you look back at it and view it on tape, how do you feel about the bout?
Mosley: Actually I thought the first fight was more of a unanimous decision and maybe the second fight could have been a split decision because it was a very close fight that second one. It could have went either way. Oscar did a good job of boxing and moving and didnít really press as much. It was definitely a closer fight I think than the first one, but scoring is different and judges see different things so what do you do.
Jenna: Now when people talk about Oscar of late, some seem to think he should come out of retirement and fight again because of how dominant Pacquiaoís been since defeating him. Do you think he should make a return to the ring, and if he does, would you be interested in having a third fight with him?
Mosley: No, I mean weíre partners now in Golden Boy. I wouldnít care one way or another, but I donít think that a third would mean anything for him or whatever. Heís been away from the game for so long that might not be a good idea. I think that itís truly up to him if he has the love in his heart and he really wants to be dedicated and work out every day and go to the gym. The thing is heís gotten comfortable being a promoter and just enjoying his kids and doing stuff like that. I donít know. Itís up to him to say. Itís a personal decision that one person has to make with himself whether he wants to be a fighter or not.
Ciani: I was wondering Shane if youíve been following the Super Six super middleweight tournament and if you have been following it I was wondering if you could just give us some general impressions youíve had about it.
Mosley: I watch it here and there. I like all of the guys, actually. Itís pretty much a good tournament. I mean Andre Ward is doing very well, and Andre Dirrell, I watched a couple of his fights. Arthur Abraham, he was doing well but I guess it was controversial when he fought Andre Dirrell. Arthur Abrahmaís a very hard puncher, very strong. I think itís coming along pretty good. I like it. Thereís a lot of great young talent in that tournament.
Ciani: So far in that tournament, Andre Ward is ahead on the leader board. He scored two impressive victories. He of course beat tournament favorite Mikkel Kessler in round one and now a couple of weeks ago he just had another dominant effort against Allan Green and he looks like the man to beat right now. Iím wondering from your perspective as a superstar in the sport, do you think Andre Ward has the potential to cross that threshold and become a superstar in his own right?
Mosley: Definitely. He has the charisma, heís very well spoken, heís a student of the game. He definitely loves the sport of boxing. I definitely think that he has the ability to cross over into superstardom. He has it all. So I think this fight is only going to elevate him to the next level and if he keeps fighting these tough fights, eventually weíll have another superstar.
Ciani: Would you be interested, Shane, if there was a tournament like this somewhere in the weight range youíre fighting, like say 154 now. Coming up, if something like that could be put together at 154 would that be something youíd be interested in participating in?
Mosley: Yeah, Iíd participate it in. With all the top junior middles it would be kind of hard for our weight class I think because I think more money is involved, more financials. With me, Cotto, and a few others, but it could be something that we could look into.
Jenna: Alright Shane, well we have just a couple of more questions before we let you off the line and back to your fight with Mora, and I mentioned before how youíve seen his fights before at 154, but what do you think is the most important thing you need to do to be successful against him?
Mosley: I think my punch production with him and to make sure Iím not just standing there in front of him to throw a lot of punches at me and be hit. That means moving a little bit. I just canít be flatfooted where he can move around and box and potshot and stuff or throw a lot of combinations which he likes to do. Like I said, heís a little bigger and heís a good fighter so I have to be very careful.
Jenna: Now he only has one career loss and heís never been knocked out. Do you think you could be the guy to do it?
Mosley: Well, thatís what I doóI knock people out. I got pretty good punching power. Even Floyd was almost a victim of that, so weíll see. I mean I believe I can knockout anybody if I get in the ring with them and hit them right.
Jenna: Looking back on your career, to this point, what do you consider to be your most satisfying experience in the ring?
Mosley: Well I think the best fight would have to be with me and Oscar. Thatís the one that kind of made me, if you will, who I am today and I know the fans enjoy Oscarís fights and stuff along with mine. I think thatís the most rewarding fight, if you will, for both fighters.
Jenna: Finally, is there anything you want to say to all your fans out there and the listeners of On the Ropes Boxing Radio?
Mosley: Iíd just like to thank my fans for being great loyal fans. Continue to watch my fights. Iím still here and Iím going to be here for awhile, so thank you for being great fans.
Jenna: Alright, well it was a pleasure talking to you again Shane and we wish you the best of luck on September 18 against Sergio Mora.
Mosley: Take care, I appreciate it. Thank you.
Ciani: Thanks Shane. Good luck!
Mosley: Alright, thank you. Bye bye.
For those interested in listening to the Shane Mosley interview in its entirety, it begins approximately one hour and thirty minutes into the show.
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Article posted on 13.07.2010
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