Felix “Tito” Trinidad and Papa Trinidad recently met with the press. Below is some of what they said.
What do you think about weighing in on dame day as fight?
Papa: I think it’s not healthy for fighters to weigh in on the same day as their fight. A lot of fighters get dehydrated to make weight. So you need the 24 hours in order to be in better condition to fight. It’s up to the fighter, and yes, he can jump up twenty pounds if he wants to. But it makes no difference. The most important thing is for the fighter to make weight on the day he has to. It’s up to each person’s body to see how much more weight they need or can gain. After the weigh-in it is not a matter of how much more you gain, but is up to your metabolism.
Can you compare Winky’s style to previous fights?
Papa: His stance is different than other fighter we have faced in the past and we cannot compare his style.
Can you explain thoughts going into fighting Winky?
Papa: We didn’t base it on his style. We just want to fight the best. Winky is at the top of the world’s boxing elite. He had challenged Tito in the past. Tito has enough tools to defeat any fighter at this point of his career. Now we have Winky Wright in front of us and we don’t make any observations based on the styles of the fighters that we pick and choose. We’ve always been happy to fight the best in the world and that’s what we want to do.
What makes you think you will beat him?
Papa: We are not basing any of our training or preparations on Winky’s weaknesses. We are basing the entire camp on his potential: Working on his boxing techniques; working on his power punching; utilizing all of his power and his boxing ability that he has always had. Winky’s weaknesses will not be a factor in training, just Tito’s potential that he has had in the past.
Tito: Winky has been willing to fight me and that’s what I want to do. I want to fight the best guys out there that are willing to fight me.
What were Papa’s thoughts when Tito told him he wanted to come back and fight again?
Papa: My reaction wasn’t really that of surprise. I the back of my mind I knew that there was the possibility that he would come back. His fans were always pushing him and everyone was asking for him to return to the ring. When he decided to come back to boxing I went along with the idea and told him I would help him as I always did in the past.
Birmingham said he found the formula De La Hoya and Hopkins used to beat him.
Papa: We have also seen a lot of tapes of Winky’s fights against Vargas and Shane Mosley, but the main thing for us is to get Tito’s potential to come out in the ring and see that he is 100% ready for this fight. The quality of the great champion will come out as it did in other big fights.
There is a rematch clause for Winky if he wins. Would you give him one if you win?
Papa: If it is worth it to give him the rematch we will do so. We have no rematch clause in our contract but if it is worth it and it is a great fight, why not do it again?
If Winky sticks out his chin, what would you do?
Tito: If Winky lowers his hands and he gives me his chin, I will give him the biggest punch of his life. If I have that opportunity, of course I will take it again . . . I have been training really, really hard and there is no difference than in my previous camps, so it’s basically the same thing. I have always trained to win the fight. This is exactly what I did in the Mayorga fight. There is no big difference between that camp and this one.
Do you think Shane fought a better second fight?
Tito: I think in the second fight Shane Mosley did much better because it seemed as though he had more desire to win that fight. Obviously Winky Wright pressed on in the later rounds to win but Shane had much more desire to win.
Who has Tito been preparing with that has Winky’s power?
Papa: We have quite a few sparring partners that we have been working with but of course they cannot match Winky’s ability but let’s not forget that Tito has faced six southpaws in his career and this won’t be the exception. He beat all of those six guys and this shouldn’t be any different.
Have you seen what you can exploit in Winky?
Papa: I want to make this clear. This fight will not be won because of somebody’s inability to do something or a particular weakness. Winky is a great champion and he has proven himself at 154 pounds. We are much superior than Winky and that’s what we’ll prove on May 14.
Do you think Winky is prepared for you?
Tito: I think in the back of his mind he has an idea of how hard I can hit. To tell you the truth, he probably doesn’t want to get to May 14th, because he probably afraid of what I can do in the ring. But he already signed the contract and he cannot back out of it and he will se how much punching power I have that day.
Has Tito seen another opponent be psyched out by all of his fans?
Tito: I don’t think it will matter that the people will be behind me in this fight as much as the other fights. First of all, Winky is a very experienced fighter and has fought all over the world and that shouldn’t be an issue. It is not going to be the people chanting or the people behind me that will get him all psyched out. It will be me.
How long does it take in a fight to pick out deficiencies once the fight starts?
Papa: That is extremely hard to predict. It comes within the fight. It could be the first round and it could be later. It is just a matter of being there and seeing what is going on in the ring.
Do you feel Winky is in the same class as Hopkins, de la Hoya and Whitaker?
Tito: Obviously he is and that’s why he is champion at 154-pounds. There is no question about that.
Winky said there was an issue with hand wraps and will be very cautious as well.
Papa: They have a right to see how we wrap Tito’s hands. We’ll do the same, supervising how they do their job wrapping Winky’s hands and we’ll both do the same thing.
What concerns you most about Winky?
Tito: I don’t want to take anything away from Winky Wright or be disrespectful to him but I have no worries about what he will do. I have no concerns about that and I’m not thinking about that. I only know that he will be in great condition and he will come to fight.
Do you try to take advantage during the fight?
Papa: It comes with the fight just like my father said. Of course it could happen in the first round or it could happen later. If I have the opportunity to finish an opponent I will finish him right away. If I see that Winky Wright is not up to par with me, I will definitely take him out.
What was it like when he came back and he was in the ring listening to his fans?
Tito: It was one of the most exciting times of my life, just to hear the fans chanting “Tito, Tito,” when I stepped up into the ring. The only way I knew how to pay them back was to give them every single round and give the best performance that I could ever put together. It was kind of hard to describe, to go back into the ring and hear my name and to hear people screaming for him.
Winky is known to have a pretty good chin, what is the plan?
Tito: It is just a matter of conditioning really. I always prepare for twelve rounds and this is the same case for this fight. I prepare for twelve and of course if I can knock him out and I’ll go along until I get that victory.
Are there any stipulations on gloves?
Papa: They haven’t decided on what gloves he will be wearing for the fight, color or brand, but that will be decided later.
Winky said you beat a blown up welterweight in Mayorga.
Tito: It doesn’t really matter if you think about it. Mayorga was not a welterweight any more and I gave him the beating of his life and nobody can question that. That was the end result and we already went through that. I knocked him out and that is that.
Birmingham said this is just another fight for them.
Papa: I can interpret that as saying it will be another loss for Winky Wright and of course they will say whatever they have to say but never underestimate the power and the quality of Tito the champion . . . Watch the show from the very beginning because it may end very early.