Pernell Whitaker Joins Team Judah

BY The Sweet Science ON January 21, 2011
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Judah was life and death with Lucas Matthysse. Can he give a better showing against Mbuza? (photo by Hogan Photos)Zab Judah Conference Call Quotes

Kathy Duva, Main Events CEO: "We have a new chapter opening for us and also a new one for Zab Judah as well. On March 5th we are going to be back in Newark and Zab is going to become a world champion again. Main Events along with Zab is going to be opening a new venue at Prudential Center, it's called the Amerihealth Pavilion. We are very excited about that."

"Many years ago Main Events made a name for itself by putting a fight in an ice rink in Totowa, NJ. Well this building also doubles as an ice rink. It's going to be a space for athletic events, concerts, comedy and all kinds of shows. Underneath the floor will be an ice rink for this first show, because it's still hockey season, so it's going to be familiar to some of us. It's going to be a great night kicking off this tremendous venue. I think it's going to become the new millennium's version of what Ice World used to be years ago: an incubator for new talent coming up. And I can't think of a better way to open than with a world title fight featuring Zab Judah vs. Kaiser Mabuza, who's coming all the way from South Africa to fight him (Zab)."

Zab Judah: "It means a lot to me to be put in this position (to become world champion). Kaiser Mabuza is a very tough fighter. He brings a great style to the ring of boxing, and he brings exciting fights. He's known as a home wrecker and he's coming across the world, so I know he's coming in 100% prepared for us. I know he's gonna try to come in there and win his first world title, but Zab Judah is in there and I'm looking to become the 5 time champion of the world. I'm not gonna stop."

"You know I'm not joking, there's nothing amusing here. Kaiser Mabuza is a fighter who made his way to the number one spot in boxing. There's nothing I can take away from that, there's nothing you can take away from that. The man has made his way up there to become the number one fighter in the world. I'm number 2. He's higher than me already and I'm going to surpass him come March 5th, but right now the man is number one in the world. So you have to give him his respect, because he made his way there."

"My last fight was Lucas Matthysse, another fighter people didn't know anything about, but now you guys know about him. With Matthysse everybody was saying to me, 'he's nobody, nobody knows him'. But now people see he's a very rugged, tough, strong puncher, and like I said the guy has exceptional punching power. I know he's got another fight coming up. Watch, you'll get another look at him with another opponent with a different style and then you guys will say 'well damn, the only person who could beat him was Zab'. Then you guys will give me props. Same thing with Kaiser Mabuza, he's an action- packed fighter, he's coming in here, this is a major opportunity for him. He sat around and waited for the opportunity for a long time and I know come March 5th, Kaiser Mabuza is not coming all the way from South Africa to lose."

"These guys Matthysse and Mabuza, people side stepped them because they're not familiar with them, because they're from different countries and they were doing things over there. People say, 'I'm not fighting them, they're nobody', but evidently they are somebody, because they made their way up to the position they are at right now."

"Training camp is going well. We picked up a helping hand, Pernell "Sweetpea" Whitaker. He will be a new member of Team Judah. At this point I'm just taking experiences and sapping knowledge everywhere we go, sucking it all up. I need it. I'm going to get the best, to be the best."

Kathy Duva: "Pernell was thrilled when he found out that Zab was interested in bringing him in. There's probably nobody in the world that can build a game plan better than Pernell Whitaker. He can see everything. I think in Zab he has found a student who can actually execute everything he wants him to do, which hard for someone like Pete (Pernell) to find. There aren't very many fighters that could actually do the things that Pete could teach him. I think of Pete as sort of a great concert pianist, he isn't going to be satisfied teaching students to play Chopsticks, but if he can find a student who can play that concerto the way he did, then he can really teach him something. That's what this pairing is. I think it's absolutely inspired and a wonderful idea. I know Pete is as thrilled about it as we are."

Zab Judah: "This man (Mabuza) is coming in here to fight, this gonna be a good fight. But just know that I'm ready, I'm working hard. I'm back doing my running; I'm back in the mountains training. We're in the gym now everyday. My life has changed."

"I know it's his (Mabuza) first opportunity to become a world champion. We are expecting a tough, 12 round, action-packed, non-stop-punches fight. This is what makes great fights."

Zab Judah12 Rounds - IBF Jr. Welterweight Championship

Amerihealth Pavilion at Prudential Center, Newark, NJ

March 5th, 2011

Zab Judah           vs.       Kaizer Mabuza

Brooklyn, NY                  Johannesburg, South Africa

40-6, 27 KO's                  23-6-3, 14 KO's

Comment on this article

FighterforJC says:

Judah is a sad case of a fighter growing up too late. He seems to have genuinely wised up but I think it's a bit too late for him to capitalize on it. He wasted his best years on bravado, bling and style over substance. I don't know how much good Whitaker will bring. I'm happy for the cokehead to find a job, but I don't think he'll be a good trainer because he still has a chip on his shoulder and hasn't let go of his former occupation. It's still all about Pernell.

Radam G says:

Zab Judah has been so gifted. His biggest problem is that boxing is about 70 percent mental, five percent diet and five percent hygiene. Ole Duper -- I mean Super -- Zab has been mentally weak, dieting wrong and not being clean -- nutritionally, physically, spiritually and/or emotionally. Pernell Whitaker has had many problems with drinking all types of cokes -- I mean sniffing da BIG C -- Cocaine -- while listening to Big Daddy Kane. Oh, Yup! Sweet Pete [sic] loved himself some BDK. Pete also knows the game of boxing, especially for southpaws. He is no doubt the greatest southpaw boxer of all times, slightly edging out Hector "Macho Time" Camacho. [Da Manny is not a boxer, but a fighter with shock, pop and chilli bang, BANG! He is the greatest southpaw fighter of all times.] Sweet Pete can/will/and/should help Zab.

First thing is to get Zab to fight a full fight, and quit the tough-guy act of posing, bluffing and bullsyeting his way through a bout. Just look at that photo shot with Matthysse. WTF! I guess that Matthysse is throwing one of those media-named "up jabs." Sweet Pete is going to teach Zab how to separate shoulders and break arms of these New Jack fighters, who don't do old school, correct ways of punching. [Dat arm-punching jive has got to go.] Old School Boxing whups New Jack Boxing any day of the week. The Chinese Year of the Rabbit starts in February, so I'm hoping that this is the start of the beatdown of the Jack Rabbit fighters -- hopping around and arm punching muthasuckas. Holla!

the Roast says:

I cant wait to see Zab do the shoulder shake-bend at the waist-crouch to the floor- Sweet Pea D!

brownsugar says:

Sweet Pea is more than just the sum of his short comings, the former P4P was one of those athletic talents that only come around every 2 or 3 decades... Zab will judge if Pernells' cirriculum is worth the asking price. I think if carefully matched, Zab could extend his career another 3-5 good fights.

Editor Mike says:

Zab is what Zab is. NOTHING can change him at this late stage, IMO

brownsugar says:

Zab versus Ortiz,.. If Zab gets by Mbuza,.. .... Make it happen!

the Roast says:

Sug, I read Ortiz is in talks with Berto. He wants a catchweight at 143. You believe that?

MisterLee says:

catchweight? excuse me while i throw up! how is that guy gonna make demands?

brownsugar says:

Roast, Mister Lee..... they claim that Vic's days at 140 is just about over. Vic struggles to make weight. GBP must have lost patience with Ortiz (or maybe confidence) to toss him at Berto the destroyer of juniorwelters. A catchweight is Vics only chance but I doubt that Berto will go for it since he weighs 160 something between fights.

Editor Mike says:

I too think catchweight mania is overboard when Victor O types want catchweight fights. C'mon. We have plenty of weight divisions, pick one. If that one doesn't work, go up or down one. Stop trying to game the system.

FighterforJC says:

I too think catchweight mania is overboard when Victor O types want catchweight fights. C'mon. We have plenty of weight divisions, pick one. If that one doesn't work, go up or down one. Stop trying to game the system.


Like I've said several times before, ALL weight divisions are catchweights. If you can't find one you like, make one up that your opponent will agree to. There's nothing wrong with that. Perhaps this "catchweight mania" would usher in the new era of boxing. If handled properly, this can break down unnecessary barriers that prevent two fighters from ever meeting up in the ring. It'll be problematic though, when it comes to naming champions. However, who cares about titles anyway. Some still do, I suppose.

amayseng says:

zab is an athletic phenom...he is still young enough to be dominate. he was superb vs lucas in the fact he fought all 12 rounds and finished strong, something that has been missing in his early career. go watch the first 4 rounds against mayweather and you will recall the physical talents zab has...zab has really grown up and just on time, a year later and it would have been too late. i wish him luck..

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