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Is Yory Boy Campas Shot, Or Not?

BY Michael Woods ON September 27, 2006
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We know, basically, what we have in John Duddy. White kid, likes to bang, can bang, good chin. And what we don’t know, if he can defend himself against top tier guys, and if that chin is as good against world-class hitters, we will know by next year. On Friday, another question that looms large for Duddy and his considerable bandwagon will be answered. How much does his opponent, Luis Ramon Campas, have left?

Who is Luis Ramon Campas, you ask yourself?

You know him better as Yory Boy Campas, but he ceased being that around 1998, when Fernando Vargas disabled his will and battered his face in the seventh round of their IBF junior middleweight title fight in Atlantic City. Campas, the Mexican ultra-veteran with an 88-8(72 KOs)record, who debuted in 1987, is 35.

He’s no boy.

And if he’s not The Man, as he was built up to be when he took on Felix Trinidad in 1994, when he boasted a 56-0 mark, he still definitely is a man.

Campas is on a two fight winning streak, and that’s not to be dismissed when you’re 35, and fighting at middleweight, when you started out at junior welter. He bested unbeaten Esteban Camou, a fellow Mexican, on Sept. 30, 2005 (TKO6) in Mexico.

Campas, who wore a NY Yankees warmup jacket to a press conference at Zona Rosa, a Nuevo Mexican restaurant in Manhattan on Wednesday afternoon, followed that win with a win over Chicago’s Miguel Hernandez on July 15 in Michigan. He stopped both foes.

Before the Camou fight, Campas was brought in to lose to Minnesotan Matt Vanda in Minnesota on June 24, 2005 and didn’t cooperate readily. He lost a split call, but his people thought he won nine of 12 rounds.

The man who made the Duddy/Campas bout, which will be held in the Theatre at Madison Square Garden is Jim Borzell. He believes Campas beat Vanda, so for all intents and purposes, we’ll call it a three fight win streak.

Before Vanda, Campas fought and beat Rigoberto Placencia on April 7, 2005 in California, so make it a four fight win streak.

Hey, is this guy shot, or not?

“It’s a mystery what exactly Campas has left,” said Borzell at the PC. “Did I take him too early for Duddy or is it late enough (in Campas’ career)?”

Borzell, who must be applauded for not speaking the typical spinmeister BS, admits that Campas ain’t what he used to be.

“John Duddy is not of the caliber of fighter that Campas was when he had the IBF junior middleweight title (won in 1997 over Raul Marquez, taken by Vargas six months later), yet,” he said. “But he’ll still beat the sh-- out of you and me as an old man.”

What will he do to Duddy (17-0, 15 KOs)?

Campas’ trainer/manager says his guy is in the best shape of his life. Campas told TSS that he has watched tape of Duddy and feels he is a strong fighter with a good punch.

“His record indicates he has a good punch,” Campas said thru a translator. “But I’m coming to win this fight.”

Did Team Duddy make a mistake, Campas was asked, choosing him to test their guy’s progress?

“Fighters have to be tested,” he said. “They might be making a mistake.”

Campas didn’t say he would drop Duddy but promised he would bang away because he doesn’t know if “the judges have a bias.”

He is by no means shot, Campas indicates.

“My reflexes and instincts are still there,” he said. “Some fighters shoot their load quicker than others. I’m a late bloomer. And power never goes away. The power is there.”

SPEEDBAG Duddy was properly on edge as he took questions from the media yesterday. Where, he was asked, do you slot yourself rankings-wise in your weight class? “What’s the difference, twenty, thirty, there’s a difference between number one and everyone else,” he said.

The 27-year-old Queens resident said his camp, the first solo camp of his young career, went great. He was in the Poconos for four weeks, and really dug the atmosphere. “You don’t realize the distractions til you get away from it,” he said.

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