Jeff Mayweather -Talks Salido and Mayweather Jr maybe be peaking to early


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The life of a boxing trainer can be a hectic one; almost as the fighters they train. Especially if you’re one of the more highly respected and highly sought after trainers like Jeff Mayweather. A former IBO super featherweight champion himself, Jeff is now mostly known for his work in the corners of his stable of fighters. Traveling back and forth across the state of Nevada to work with his pupils is the norm, but he also frequents Panama for training with his star Celestino Caballero. Fight nights sometimes require more of a trek often on foreign soil. I caught up with “Uncle Jeff” just as he arrived back home to Vegas after a lengthy stay over in North Dakota, where long-time pupil Dewey Cooper 19-3-3 (11) picked up a second round knockout victory.

Assessing Dewey Cooper’s latest performance…

He looked good, sharp. He was in good shape. It was a good performance. He did what he needed to do.

The plan for Cooper’s at this late stage in his career…

He does of course MMA, K1, he does a little bit of everything. At one point in time he was just strictly boxing for a while, but I’ve had him since the beginning of his career. To be honest, he’s never lost a fight with me. But he went back to K1 & it slowed down his boxing career totally. So now I’m trying to get him back on track and hopefully get a small title, and then move on to bigger and better things. Like you said, the window of opportunity is small, so whatever we’re gonna do, we have to try to make something happen quick, and he’s gonna have to dedicate himself probably more to just boxing if that’s something that he wants. ‘Cause he will have a boxing fight scheduled, and then right after that he will have an MMA fight scheduled. I know he’s been into MMA pretty much his entire life, but he is gonna have to choose which one he wants to excel at.

Making Cooper more defensive minded…

You know I been working with Dewey for a quite some time, so basically everything about boxing he learned from me from day one. One thing about Dewey is he has tremendous hand speed. He’s always in great, great condition, and with that he has a high punch output, so a lot of times guys can’t deal with his speed. Then the fact that he throws so many punches, that makes it really hard on them.

Working with Roy Nelson…

I’ve been working with him for a little over a month now. It’s been going great. I’m new to the MMA world so I didn’t really know who he was & he’s a pretty popular guy. People tell me “yeah I know Big Country” so I’m like honored to work with the guy & with Mo (King Mo Lawal) also. I think a lot of people just look at his appearance, & part of that is being “Big Country”. I mean, the guys not even country. He was born in Las Vegas, so that’s a part of the image, that’s a part of what he’s selling. I don’t know about him fighting in his prime or whatever, but as far as working with him, he’s coming along really well. They guy actually has really good defense & you know he’s got some pop. Even though people might say he’s out of condition or whatever. He’s not out of condition. The dude works very hard. I just think that he’s so caught up in his image that he wants to look that way. He might not be cosmetic, but this guy works hard! i think the whole image & having a stomach, probably puts a few more dollars in his pockets. From my understanding this a a big fight for him, pretty much one that he has to win to stay in line in the UFC. I don’t care what he looks like, I know that he will be in probably the best shape that he ever was for this fight because I’m really pushing him. He has that mentality where you hit me & I’ll hit you, as opposed to taking the lead, but his endurance will be great. I expect him to do real well.

Being embraced by the MMA world…

I think MMA guys are a little easier to train because with a boxer who’s been with someone else for a while, they already have the concept of what they wanna do. So they’re a little more combative than MMA fighters, because they (MMA fighters) are like a canvas that hasn’t been touched. You can pretty much mold them into what you want them to be. I give them the option of working with the style they’re comfortable with, but most of them tell me “no, just teach me how you would with your fighters (boxers). So it’s easier for me because I don’t have to make that transition, and I can just be myself & teach them what i know. I actually picked up a couple other MMA fighters. I don’t know too much about MMA but I think they are a big deal–Team Faber, I think.. Danny Costello, I think is one & the other is T.J…. I can’t remember his last name. He’s a lightweight & he’s another very good fighter though. They are both very talented. They say feel great and that when they go back to sparring they can already see the difference. Its exciting for me to work with those guys because they are excited. To them it’s a whole new world. I’m enjoying being accepted in both worlds.

Celestino Caballero possibly facing WBO featherweight champion Orlando Salido or the undefeated Mikey Garcia…

To be honest, I would prefer the Salido fight just because he’s a proven champion so the fight means more to Celestino, & it’s more marketable. Salido has kinda put himself in the position to kinda be considered “the man”, but not really. He beat Juanma, who everyone just threw to the forefront of the division like he was “the man”, but he never really was “the man”. With that being said, Juanma had a huge following & lots of people who felt like he was it, but going into both fights I knew he was gonna lose. I mean, any time a guy beats you & eventually knocks you out, he has your number. If a guy lands one punch & knocks you out, that’s totally different because anybody can be caught by a punch. Mikey Garcia is a good fighter, but at the same time I’m not so much worried about him because Celestino would have no problems with him at all. He’s a basic fighter who just comes in, he can punch a little bit, but he’s nothing special. That’s a fight that we would have to fight maybe because he’s our mandatory, but I’d rather take a fight that makes more sense to the boxing world & would prove who’s the best in the division. But Mikey Garcia worked very hard to get to the position where he’s at, so if we have to fight him then when we have to fight him. That’s a fight that a lot of people are like “whoa, whoa, whoa”, but I’m like “no, no, no”. I think that would be an easy fight.

Caballero making his promotional debut in the Province of Colon, Panama later this month…

That’s actually news to me! I’m glad he took a step in that direction because he’s been established as a fighter, & he is so loved down there. The doors are open for him to do basically anything he wants to do. Put it this way, this guy drives around Panama with no plates on his car. That might sound like nothing with me just saying it, but you can’t do that over here in the United States! One day we got stopped & they saw who he was & they said “Oh! Go ahead champ”, it was amazing to me. Not only that, the last time I went there I lost my passport. Of course when I landed in Panama, they weren’t gonna let me in the country. I slept in the airport for about six hours, & finally Celestino came, & he called the president of Panama. He told them to let me in. All I could say was “wow!” But I told Celestino, I’m sorry, but if you get stuck over in the U.S., I cant call nobody for you. But it’s all because of the type of person he is. Other than Duran, he’s the biggest name over there. They love him because he’s not one of those guys that separate himself from everybody. After we train, a lot of the time he will go & hang out & talk trash with the guys on the corner. If he enters that realm of the boxing world I think it will go great for him. Hopefully I can get some of my guys over there with him.

How Floyd’s camp is going in preparation for Miguel Cotto on May 5th…

I’m not there as much as I could be because I’m working with my fighters, but I’ve been there enough to see that he is looking very good. I think he actually should take a few days off, maybe not off, but maybe just from boxing because he looks like he is peaking early, that’s how good he looks. He is absolutely dominating these guys, & they are way, way bigger. Every single guy that he’s in there with is around 170 pounds & up.

Floyd possibly moving up to the middleweight division (160 lbs)…

I don’t know. I guess it would depends on who are champions at 160. Other than Martinez, I don’t even know who the champions are at that weight. I’m not even sure if Floyd can carry 160 pounds. In order for him to do that he would to do some type of strength training & build himself up to that, because hes not even really a 154 pounder. He walks around at about 150 pounds. I don’t know if it’s just talk, but anything is possible. Maybe that’s the next challenge for himself, thinking honestly of the possibility of the fight between him & Pacquiao not happening. If it did happen than it’s just to pick up another title in another weight class, which he doesn’t have anything really to prove in terms of that. I doubt if the Martinez fight would happen but you never know. At one point Floyd did say he would fight him. But I mean you still gotta favor Floyd in that fight. It’s no way he could fight with his hands down like that with Floyd in there. It would e a totally different fight for him. He’s a very talented fighter, but his knowledge to Floyd’s knowledge, it’s just on two different levels. He’s off balance a lot & you just can’t make those mistakes with Floyd.

Predictions on Floyd-Cotto…

I think Floyd will win the fight either way, because one thing is for sure, Floyd is too fast for Cotto. Too fast & too smart. Cotto likes to be a counter-puncher himself, but he waits too much so Floyd will pick him apart. I think Floyd will pick him apart & I wouldn’t be surprised if he stopped him in 8 or 9 rounds.

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