Freddie Roach Interview: The Day After

16/11/2009 11:56

The legendary Freddie Roach returns home to 8CountNews and shares his thoughts on Manny Pacquiao's spectacular performance over Miguel Cotto.  Roach breaks down the fight, and shares his thoughts on the entire experience.  Roach also lets it be known that a run at the 154 pound title is not out of the question.  Of course he also sets his sights on Floyd Mayweather Jr, a fight that the entire boxing world wants to see.  Roach said that they would offer Mayweather a 60/40 split, however he says that there is always room for some negotiations on that. 

Freddie admits that he was a bit nervous at times when Manny Pacquiao got up on the ropes, but said that it was alright as long as their was a reason for it.  The legendary boxing trainer also informs us that Manny hurt his hand a little bit, and that he had to have his ear drained after the fight.  Don't miss what else the great Freddie Roach had to say in this exclusive 8CountNews interview. (Podcast available)

8CN - Freddie thanks for joining us.

FR - Thanks for having me.

8CN - Alright, let's get right into this thing.  It was an unbelievable performance by Manny Pacquiao. What are your thoughts on Manny's performance, and where does he rank amongst the all time greats now?

FR - Well it was a great performance.  We had a little bit of a change in the game-plan in the beginning, he decided to get on the ropes a little bit and test Cotto's power.  He had me a little worried in the beginning, but once he hit his rhythm he made it easy. He ranks in the top 10 all time, seven world titles?  That's not going to happen again in many years.

8CN - How do you process this whole ride?  I know you told me that he was going to be good, but did you think that he would be this good?

FR - No, he was just 122lbs when we met and we won the title a month later. Who would have known that we would be fighting for the welterweight title one day? I would have told you that you were crazy.  Now we are talking about 154, and you know what? We can beat Yuri Foreman and get his title.

8CN - You always got something new for me. You're telling me that you guys are thinking about going up to 154 and going after that title?

FR - Yuri won the title last night, and we are talking about it.

8CN - Obviously a Yuri Foreman fight doesn't pay like a Mayweather fight. We'll get into that later though, I noticed that Cotto changed up his approach once he tasted Manny's power. There were a few dimensions in this fight huh?

FR - Good fighters make adjustments, Manny put himself on the ropes and we worked on that. Cotto was much smarter than I thought, he made the right moves. After the first knockdown though, the fight was ours.

8CN - Emanuel Steward told me the same thing.  Cotto looked fast in the fight, did that surprise you? Were you nervous at all?

FR -  He was much faster than I expected, and I tell you what, he caught Manny a few times and got his attention.  He caught Manny coming off of the ropes with a left uppercut.  By the 9th round Cotto was in survival mode, but when a fighter runs a corner and the camp that's a problem. I thought the corner should have stopped the fight. They shouldn't have let him take that beating.

8CN - It looked to me right before the end of the fight that Manny was asking the referee to stop the fight. You were telling Manny in the corner to finish him. Is Manny more compassionate than you are?

FR - We have Mayweather negotiations right around the corner, so the knockout was necessary. People wanted the referee to stop the fight, I told Manny, "You stop the fight. You go throw punches and don't let this guy off of the hook."   He took his foot off of the pedal for awhile, so I told him to get out there and knock this guy out.

8CN - OK, so this win sets up a possible fight against Floyd Mayweather Jr.  It's going to come down to money, and who settles for what.  Do you think this fight will get done?

FR - I think it will get done, I mean where is Mayweather going to go? What's he going to do, fight the winner of Berto vs Mosley? He doesn't want that either, he wants to make money also, and so does Manny Pacquiao.  We will offer him a 60/40 split.

8CN - If Floyd doesn't settle on a 60/40 split, will you guys move at all?

FR - There is always room for negotiations, of course we are the draw.  With the PPV numbers we should get more than 55 at least.

8CN - In Floyd's defense, he sells a lot of PPV's himself.

FR - Well they almost reached a million for the first time in his life in his last fight, and if the numbers are correct most of those buys came from Latin America.

8CN - Let's talk about the match up between Manny and Floyd.  How do you see that fight playing out?

FR - Well were not worried about his punching power, because he doesn't have any. But he is fast, but we are fast enough to deal with that.  We have better foot work, and he doesn't like to engage too much.  We will break him down like we did  Cotto.  He poses more of a problem with his speed.  If he lays on the ropes and rolls his shoulder, and all of that bullshit, we will eat him up.

8CN - Manny's ear was bleeding, and he had it bandaged up after the fight.  Can you update us on Manny's health?

FR - They had to drain it, it was a little swollen from the blood getting in there.  We did it to prevent cauliflower ear, it's just a precautionary step.  He hurt his hand a little bit, he's a little sore but it was a tough fight.

8CN - What are your thoughts on Miguel Cotto? He's a class act.

FR - Great guy, great performance.  He gave it 100 percent, he came to fight. I told Manny that the only time he will hit you is when you are flat footed. When Manny went flat footed, Miguel started doing better in the fight with the jab and the straight punches.  He fought a much better fight than I though he would.  We talked to him after the fight, and he's quite a gentleman.

8CN - How's Manny feeling about this whole experience?

FR - Terrific, he was in control of the fight for the whole time.  He knew what he was doing in there.  He got on the ropes a few times, but he knew what he was doing and I can accept that. As long as he had a reason to be on the ropes I am OK with it.  If it's just to waste time, then don't be there.  I give Manny an A+ for his performance. It was a great win.

8CN - Can you give us an update on Z Gorres?

FR - They tell me that he's doing better.  He's in guarded condition now, and he's heading in the right direction.  It is a sad moment, he's a great guy.  When you fight, you know the risk that we are taking.  We do choose it, it's a shame these things happen, but they do.

8CN - Do you have any closing thoughts for the Filipino fans and the boxing fans around the world?

FR - Thanks for all of your support.  We just had Mass with Manny and 1,500 people showed up for that.  Thanks for all your support, and we will see you soon.