According to Yoel Judah, the weather around the gym in Deerfield Beach, FL has been fine.
So has the wildlife.
“It’s sunny out here,” said Yoel, father and trainer of Zab Judah. “It’s hot. The birds are whistling, the trees are moving. Everything’s good.”
We’ll have to take Yoel’s word for it because Zab, who fights Floyd Mayweather Jr., on April 8 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, isn’t talking. At least he wouldn’t pick up the phone on a recent conference call. He was too busy staying “focused.”
So instead of Zab, we got Yoel, we got promoter Don King, and we got shut out from learning any game plan Zab (34-3, 25 KOs) might have against Mayweather (35-0, 24 KOs) in their welterweight title fight on HBO pay-per-view.
Oh yeah. We did get a couple predictions.
“Zab Judah will knockout Mayweather, which will shock the world,” King said. “No one wants to believe this but Zab is focused, dedicated and committed to destroying Mayweather. He is as fast as Mayweather, he’s much stronger than Mayweather, he hits much harder than Mayweather. And whether Mayweather – who I consider one of the best boxers in the world – will be able to box his way out of this hell that he’s getting into remains to be seen. You heard it right here first.”
Yoel wasn’t quite as elaborate with his prediction.
“He’s going to get a bad-ass whupping,” he said. “Mayweather‘s got problems. He’s got a big mouth and we’ll shut it.”
How will he shut it? That’s why we wanted to talk to Zab.
Asked how Zab was going to beat a guy with the gifts of Mayweather after his recent loss to Carlos Baldomir in January, Yoel again provided insight.
“We’re going to do what we do best, man, and that’s win.”
Pressed a little harder, Yoel was asked what advantages his son might be able to capitalize on against Mayweather.
“Step in the ring and we’ve got the advantage,” he said. “April 8, don’t blink.”
Solid game plan. So much input. So little time left.
While the loss to Baldomir was an ugly one, King claims there might have been some good coming out of it.
“Baldomir brought sobriety back to Zab,” he said. “It humbled him in a way that was embarrassing, humiliating. And now he has to avenge himself.”
Midway through the conference call, someone asked Yoel what the chances were that Zab would soon be on the call.
“Who?” Yoel asked.
“Oh. I don‘t know. He‘s focused. He‘s training hard…He‘s out for Mayweather because he’s got a big mouth.”
While Yoel wasn’t handing out any family secrets, Don King was comfortable being Don King.
“I’ll be surprised if (Zab) doesn’t stop Mayweather,” he said. “I think he’s going to literally destroy Mayweather. Another victory for me over (Mayweather promoter) Bob Arum.”
Asked his impressions of Zab’s training camp, King said it was all about the will to win.
“If the mind can conceive it, the body can achieve it,” he said. “That’s what you got here. The will, that desire to take this guy out. That’s what I see (in Zab’s camp).”
Back to Yoel.
“(Zab) don’t hate the man, he just wants to do his job. He’s going to close his big-ass mouth. That’s all.”
Finally, someone asked Yoel if this training camp was as intense and focused as the camp Zab had for his second fight with Cory Spinks in St. Louis, maybe the best camp he’s had in his career.
“In St. Louis it was raining,” Yoel said. “Here, it’s not raining. But it might start snowing.”
Too late. We’ve already been snowed.