The Hurting Game
August 22nd is the date and the Cosmopolitan Casino and Hotel is the venue. My team mate, Badou Jack will defend his WBC world super middleweight championship title against my fellow west Londoner, George Groves in the main event.
It’s the third week of training camp. Six more tough weeks to go. I’ve got 38 victories spanning 12 years in 45 professional fights. The show will be televised by Showtime in America and Sky Sports in Britain. I’ll be looking forward to getting my sixth win with Mayweather Promotions and my 39th overall on this show.
Each week has gotten harder, and harder. We’ve been pushing the limits each week and we’ve added some new training techniques to my programme. I’m looking forward to seeing the finished article in 6 weeks from now.
From mountain runs to track workouts, boxing sessions, strength conditioning, yoga, Pilates and swimming. Training camp is no joke, especially with the additional goal of dropping 10% of your body weight during this nine week process. Camp is stressful. It’s vital to be surrounded by an understanding and supportive team.
It’s not just the significant physical and emotional work load that sits squarely on my shoulders, but there’s also a lot that goes on that you have no control over. It’s essential that you have the trust in your team to make and take the decisions that will achieve your goals, and provide the platform necessary for an optimum performance.
In time we all learn that success is never straight forward. Glory doesn’t come without major sacrifice. My job hasn’t become any easier since I chose this path in 2002. I’m doing all I can – having faith, believing in myself and continuing to work hard.
Former world champion, Luis Collazo fought Keith Thurman on Saturday in Tampa, Florida. I’ve sparred with Luis a few times in NYC, and back in the summer of 2012 I came close to fighting Keith. I ended up as a boxing analyst for that boxing match for Boxnation TV.
140lb undisputed champion Danny Garcia recently enquired about my availability to be one of his sparring partners for his fight with two weight world champion, Paul Malignaggi on August 1st. I sparred Paulie back in 2006, at Gleason’s Gym in NYC. I’m expecting a very competitive match.
“The short and tragic life of Robert Peace” by Jeff Hobbs is a brilliant book I’m currently reading in my diminishing free time – it’s hard hitting, instructive and seriously gripping.
Remember, for everything you have lost, you have gained something else. Without the dark, you would never see the stars.
Feeling the Heat
It’s back to the first week of training camp – loving it and hating it simultaneously.
My fellow TMT member, WBC world champion, Badou Jack and I are both back from our European vacations to prepare for our upcoming fights.
Badou will defend his title against Britain’s George Groves. Groves has become renowned for his courageous battles but two knock out losses to UK boxing legend, Carl Froch. They fought their last bout in front of 80,000 boxing fans at the magnificent Wembley Stadium in London. I could not miss their clash at Wembley and was there in attendance and enjoyed a great fight.
After Andre Ward’s straightforward but still impressive return to the ring, his and Amir Khan’s trainer, Virgil Hunter, was in deserved buoyant mood. He announced right after the fight that Badou is high on Andre Ward’s list of opponents. A win against Groves will put Badou on collision to a mouth-watering showdown with one of the current pound for pound bests.
Exciting times for The Money Team.
There is eight weeks of hard and severe preparation to go before we both fight for our victories.
This first week has been very hard. Sometimes the first weeks are the hardest as your body is shocked back into the necessary gladiator requirements.
The weather conditions don’t make it any easier – with Vegas weather soaring at 113 Fahrenheit or 45 Centigrade – either way scorching hot – especially when you are working as hard as we do.
Performance to the Limit
It’s been 12 years in the boxing game now, from London to New York City and now residing in Las Vegas.
45 professional boxing matches with 38 wins 6 losses and 1 draw. A record to be proud of, but one that can and will be improved on.
British champion during 2011 to 2012 with three international boxing titles won well away from home; Germany and Luxembourg fighting a Tanzanian, an Afghan and a German.
I have just spent five weeks in London, after my 38th victory, spending time with friends and family. I attended some good events and completed a mini media tour.
My good friend, Badou Jack, defends his world title against Britain’s George Groves on August 22nd in Las Vegas. Look for me to claim my 39th professional victory on the show, which will be televised by Sky Sports in the UK and on NBC across America.
I returned to Vegas for the mega fight between Adrien Broner and Shawn Porter, which was held at the MGM Arena.
I personally know both men having sparred Shawn a couple years ago. He and his father Kenny have always been welcoming to me. I’m an admirer of Kenny’s coaching techniques.
Adrien Broner or AB, as he is also known, based his training camp at the Mayweather Boxing Club. My trainer, former Olympic bronze medallist, Nate Jones assisted the Broner team in getting him ready for the fight.
I felt if Shawn, coming down to 144lbs, wasn’t drained, that he could win by imposing his strength and smothering Adrien, and that’s exactly what happened. Adrien didn’t give up without a fight, as he dropped Shawn in the last round. It just wasn’t enough.
Shawn can look forward to a very big fight. Maybe he’ll get the call to be Floyd’s opponent for September 12th. AB will be back. He’s a three weight world champion already, and he’s not even 30 years old yet.
The leading nutritional supplements company, Vitabiotics Wellman, have been with me on this journey since 2007. Team work makes the dream work. There’s only so much you can do on your own, but with a great team the possibilities are endless.
In a time when sportsmen are being caught testing positive for performance enhancing drugs, I’m proud of the fact that I’ve passed all my drug tests. Britain’s Mo Farah is unfortunately seeing his name linked with a scandal of performance enhancing drugs. That’s one thing I know that will never happen, as I use Wellman.
20 of my 38 wins have occurred during our 8 year relationship. Winning in five countries, signing with the highest paid sportsman for 4 years in a row, the current number one boxer in the world. I’m a member of “The Money Team”. I’m signed to Mayweather Promotions.
I only associate myself with the best.
After 7 weeks off, I’m back in training camp. I have 9 intensive weeks ahead of me. Pushing myself to the limit. It never gets easier, you just have to get better and tougher. It’s sink or swim time.
The focus and goal is victory 39 on August 22nd. Televised across America and Great Britain. It’s going to be a great camp.
Follow me on Twitter and like my Facebook page for all updates in the lead up to my next fight.
The Only Way is Further Up
I’ve now been in the city of Las Vegas, the fight capital of the world, for just over two years. Home to some of the best fighters ever to put gloves on; Floyd Mayweather, Mike Tyson and Roy Jones all reside in Sin City.
Mike Tyson after watching Floyd dismantle Manny said to Sky Sports “Floyd is unstoppable right now. This is his era.”
Nine weeks of working towards my own landmark of 38 wins in 45 professional fights. Floyd hit 48 wins in 48 fights. I’m being the greatest I can be, but being surrounded by legends of boxing helps me push that little bit harder.
18 months with Mayweather Promotions and I’ve had six fights, five wins with one split decision loss to former interim WBA world champion, Pablo Cesar Cano. I’ve fought some tough fighters under Floyd’s guidance. The last three have been Mexican and all three brought the best out of me. Anything less than my best and I would have lost.
The world’s media embarked on an invasion of Vegas; CNN, ESPN and Sky Sports were just three of the news outlets that were looking for insights and authentic views that interviewed me.
The boxing legends, Sugar Ray Robinson, Henry Armstrong, Marvin Hagler and Willie Pep were famed for fighting all over the world. I remember fighting in Luxembourg, and the UK media never took it seriously. They certainly sat up and paid attention when in my next fight I opened up the telecast for the biggest boxing event in history at the time, Floyd Mayweather v Saul Alvarez. People still struggle to understand the route you take to get to the mountain top. Sometimes you need to take a detour or a couple steps back, as success is never straight forward.
I’ve had loads of downs, but the ups have made them all worthwhile.
I’m 45 fights in to a 12 year professional career. I have a figure of 50 victories in mind before I ride off into the sunset. It’s been a beautiful journey, one I wake up to every day and feel appreciative of all the people I have in my life. Without the struggle I never would have met them.
I’ll be in the United Kingdom for a whistle stop tour during May to attend events, meetings and catch up with a series of media interviews including
Sky Sports and Boxnation. Stay tuned!
Let no one discourage your ambitious attitude. You don’t need a fan club to achieve your goals. Be your own fan club.
The Final Countdown
All eyes will be on Las Vegas this week. Journalists from all over the world have flown in to cover the mega event that will be taking place on Saturday May 2nd at the MGM Grand.
It’s a huge and historical week in sport and I’m a part of it. The Money Team’s UK fighter will be fighting a dangerous Mexican opponent – 30 wins, 21 by knock out with only 4 losses. I’m in the deep end, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Floyd told me back in December he’s putting me back in the big fights. He has delivered. Now it’s up to me to deliver and get the victory. It won’t be easy, but when did I ever do it easy.
Training hard and losing weight is always punishing on your body. This is my 45th training camp. I’m targeting my 38th professional win. 12 years as a professional, longevity isn’t easy in this game.
I’m feeling the best I’ve ever felt. I feel like I’m still improving as a fighter. Experience is something you cannot buy. Being a veteran is something that enables me to know there are no limits except for the ones you put in front of yourself.
This week will be crazy in Las Vegas. The biggest fight ever to take place, and I’m part of it. I’ve seen Floyd Mayweather push himself day in day out. That’s motivated and inspired me to raise my own game.
I’m positive the whole of The Money Team will be victorious this week.
Last time I was on ESPN was 5 years ago, when I beat world number three Delvin Rodriguez. I went on to be British champion before becoming part of Floyd’s team for the past two years. I’ve had a remarkable career, one that no one believed possible back in 2003 but myself
Dreams are made to come true but only by those who have the courage to pursue them.
I’m very proud of my team mate, Badou Jack. He beat Anthony Dirrell for the world WBC super-middleweight title on Friday in Chicago. Mayweather Promotions have a new world champion in the team. That was great motivation for my own fight this week.
I congratulated Badou and he responded with;
“It’s your turn now. You’re gonna be the next champion from MP.
Go get it. If I can do it you can do it.”
Just like Ishe Smith and Mickey Bey before him, he was a huge underdog, but he put in a career best performance to achieve his dream.
This is a side of Floyd Mayweather which is not really appreciated – he’s always helping other fighters reach their goals. Fighters that maybe other promoters didn’t appreciate or believe in, but he’s seen something in them and helped them to win a world title.
I’ll be doing my bit in the media back in the UK this week; I’ll be asked for my opinions and insights on Sky Sports, Boxnation and ESPN and I’ll be sharing more in a large number of interviews with a decent number of newspapers and magazines.
“Never cry. Never complain. Just work.” – Floyd Mayweather
Down to Business
I will be fighting Mohonri Montes on Thursday 30th April at Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. This is the joint main event which will be shown live on ESPN across America.
Montes is an accomplished fighter with 30 wins, 21 by knock out. He has only lost 4 and 2 of those have been to three weight world champion, Humberto Soto and respected boxer, Eric Bone.
He’s a great fight for me. One I feel will bring out the best in me.
My last two opponents have been Mexican. This will be the third one in a row and fourth over the last six. They are never easy. Always very challenging opponents.
Floyd was impressed with my last victory on December 12th in San Antonio, Texas. He shared with me that I’d be back in the big fights and here I am.
This week has seen more quality sparring and pad work.
CNN reporter, Ben Wyatt came down to the Mayweather Gym on Wednesday to interview me and watch me work out. He spent enough time to get ‘under the skin’ of what it really takes. His interview will be out next week.
I hit Red Rock Mountain for a hiking trip and I spent a day at a spa in Lake Las Vegas – when my team told me to take a day off.
It’s been a great camp. One of my best in Las Vegas.
The months have turned in to weeks, now we are looking at days.
“Learn from the past, prepare for the future, and perform in the moment.”
And the Heat goes on!
Life can be made so much harder by people going out of their way to belittle your dreams. I’ve heard “you can’t” and “you won’t” over the last 12 years far too many times. I used this to energise my efforts and “I can” and “I will” is what I told myself and I did.
They say that many successful people often have to go it alone as their journey is not one that is normally trodden.
I understand this. For years I’ve believed in myself. For years I believed I would get to the top of the mountain. I’ve always believed I was good enough.
My talent wasn’t really recognised in the United Kingdom. I went to New York City in 2005, and they instantly loved me. Many telling me that I was good enough to be world champion. I instantly felt at home, it was such a positive environment. Not like in London, where I felt I was hitting dead end after dead end.
My dream was laughed at there, but in America they believed in me. They believe in dreams.
Sometimes that’s all it takes is for someone to believe in you. I always pushed hard. Relentlessly! I wasn’t afraid of coming up short. I just had to give my best. That’s all I ask from myself, all the time.
Even when it was hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel, I kept on digging.
After becoming world number four, British champion, International champion three times, fighting in five different countries and winning. I met and joined forces with René Carayol.
This man believed in me and saw something in me I never quite did. He helped me to dream bigger. Four years strong. Despite some ups and downs, we are still on course. His vision has come true. A vision I never saw, but I believed in him, and stayed true to the script.
I’ve been in hundreds of magazines across Great Britain. I’m currently on billboards in the United Kingdom. Whenever I’m in London, I’m privileged to be a guest on Boxnation, and recently was invited by Sky Sports to provide expert opinion and insight on boxing matters, on their ‘Toe to Toe’ podcast. This is the most watched boxing program in the world.
This coming week will see me being interviewed by CNN’s Ben Wyatt in Las Vegas, for a special piece on my upcoming fight and being in “The Money Team”.
Training this week has been hard. I’ve assembled my team of sparring partners to push me every minute of every round. All talented fighters based in Las Vegas.
For the next three weeks I’ll be using the Sub-zero recovery system in Las Vegas. Best cryotherapy in town. I have got to have my body performing at its best.
Training camp is not cheap, but to get the best out of your body you have to give it the best.
“Tough times don’t last. Tough people do” – Floyd Mayweather.
Dreams are for Believing in
You push your body so hard. Right to the verge of breaking point. You feel like you’re going to collapse with exhaustion. You can never afford to get comfortable with your work ethic. No world class athlete or successful business man ever does.
I’m three weeks from my 45th professional fight. Just as I pushed my 22 year old body in 2002, when I had dreams of one day walking amongst my idols. Now in 2015, as a 34 year old man, I’m pushing even harder now. I’m a veteran in the boxing world. I walk among greats. I walk among my idols. Some are now my rivals. It’s been a great journey.
A mind blowing story that one day I’ll be able to share with audiences around the world.
I made my professional debut in 2003. Frank Warren, Mick Hennessy, Matchroom Sport and Frank Maloney were the top promoters at that time in the UK. None of them at the time believed I’d achieve much in the sport. That only added fuel to my fire. The furnace was blazing with determination.
I headed to New York City in 2005. Working at Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn. In 2010 I became world number 4 defeating world number 3 Delvin Rodriguez, and derailing his scheduled fight with Saul Alvarez.
I headed back to London to defeat British champion, Lenny Daws. Two years later I arrived in Las Vegas as I believed I was good enough to be part of the team of the number one boxer in the world, Floyd Mayweather.
Two years later I’m still here. Four wins straight and looking to make it five on Thursday 30th April at the Palms Casino Hotel.
Being able to watch Floyd workout gives me that extra motivation. That extra inspiration. He had a dream, and he worked very hard to make it a reality.
My story is becoming more special by the day, but I have so much more I can achieve. So much more I believe I will achieve. Every day I move closer to making that a reality.
First I have an opponent with 30 wins, 21 by knockout with only 4 losses. I’m back on the big stage where I always want to test myself. Always challenging myself. This is the perfect opponent to set my case for a world title challenge. I’m ready!
Back in London, Vitabiotics have a great new marketing campaign with some inspiring advertisements; featuring world class athletes Mark Foster and Jimmy Anderson alongside yours truly. I’ve been told that they look great. Even though I’m away from the UK, Vitabiotics have ensured I’ll still be there in magazines, newspapers, buses and train stations.
Dreams are just dreams unless you wake up to make them a reality. I’m here living my dreams.
Learning the Hard Way
I’ve been back in Las Vegas for two months now and my 45th fight is now only a month away.
This week I had a pleasure of working out with some hugely accomplished boxers that I would simply classify as “Legends”.
From Zab Judah, a former undisputed world champion, DeMarcus Corley, a former world champion who has fought a who’s who of the boxing world, and my close TMT colleague, Ishe Smith, the one and only world champion born in Las Vegas.
All very successful fighters indeed, having through the years fought the very best available.
I battled with them throughout our competitive sparring sessions. They brought out the best in me, punishing me for every mistake I made.
“To be the best you must surround yourself with the best”. This has been more than just a motto for me, it’s become a way of life and I believe this attitude was paramount to me being signed by Mayweather Promotions.
This week was very productive on all levels. It is always helpful and necessary to be surrounded by people whom I respect and admire, they push me day in day out to be the best I can be.
Over the weekend I was invited to take part in a Photoshoot for a new clothing line, it was good fun and a great initiative to get involved in.
I will be on Sky Sports News this week, being interviewed about the richest fight in boxing history – do look out for it.
I’m getting very excited about my fight at the Palms Casino and hotel on Thursday 30th April, two days before Floyd battles Manny Pacquiao at the MGM Grand.
Las Vegas is always a lively place, but even Vegas will be transformed that week, and there will be thousands of fellow Brits in town and I’m sure that the atmosphere will be amazing.
I had the perfect ringside seat to watch Floyd Mayweather push himself this week; sparring, pad and bag work, jumping rope and then running side by side with him around the streets of Las Vegas.
“The Rumble in the Jungle” was a legendary training camp for Muhammad Ali. It provided a career defining win for him. This training camp is the same for Floyd Mayweather – a fight estimated to be worth between 400 and 500 million dollars.
The richest fight ever to take place AND I get to witness it all from behind the scenes, and soak in what it really takes to be a legendary fighter.
As a British born and bred fighter, to have the unique and very special opportunity to be here as Floyd’s UK guy is a huge privilege.
There is no value in being here and preaching, I’m valuing being here and learning – everyday!
Getting On With It!
This is my twelfth year as a professional boxer. I’ve shared the ring with some accomplished boxers in that time; world champions Danny Garcia and DeMarcus Corley, world title challengers Delvin Rodriguez and Pablo Cesar Cano, European champion Jason Cook and British champion Lenny Daws. Anyone would say, some of the best of my era.
Fighting and winning in five different countries. St Lucia, USA, Germany, Luxembourg and England. It’s easily said, but believe me, seriously hard to accomplish. Many might say that these achievements are worthy of recognition, and some might even applaud.
It is a sad fact that very few British fighters come to America and hold their own, they tend to drown! The Americans don’t yet respect British fighters, but I’m one of a select few that has won their very hard earned respect.
Most fighters prefer the comforts of staying at home. I’ve found out that by going out to alien territory, with none of my fans in the arena, has brought the best out of me. Behind enemy lines!
When I started boxing in 1988 my dream was always to fight in America.
To fight the very best and to be at my best. As an 8 year old kid my dream was unthinkable. How was I going to do this? I’m from a poor and neglected part of London, crime filled, with low ambitions and opportunities very few and far between.
I’m living my childhood dream now. The number one fighter in the world is my boss.
Very few people set a goal and actually achieve it. Through the years the dream has gotten bigger and bolder. At first the naysayers laughed at me but now many cheer me, and to my surprise and pleasure, some even take the time to inform me “just how great I am doing and how far I’ve come”.
I have to say that I’ve done nothing in my life that has surprised me, as I’ve always pushed myself despite the lack of financial backing, I’ve found a way.
A kid from Paddington, England witnessing greatness on a day to day basis. The brilliant private workouts I get to witness AND I get to see Floyd Mayweather at work. I get to pound the streets of Las Vegas with him. He gives me advice and tells me he’s got my back.
The years of sacrifice, determination and hard work have got me here. Don’t ever tell me I can’t do something. I’ve already made the impossible possible, and here we go again.
It still amazes me just how many people appear to ‘dislike’ Floyd Mayweather, it’s usually because they do not know him, and they will never know him because they dislike him.