A recent conference call involving undercard fighters for the Canelo v Smith clash on September 17 got heated as middleweights Gabe Rosado and Willie Monroe Jr. jumped on the call.
What started off light-hearted, quickly escalated as the bad blood between the pair became evident.
Below is a transcript of how it went down:
Q. Gabe, I wanted to know what were the differences between the BKB boxing that you’ve participated in as opposed to regular boxing?
GABRIEL ROSADO:The BKB there’ no ropes. Shorter rounds, less rounds. I had fun while it lasted, but my first love is traditional boxing. So I’m just excited to be on the big stage again and showcasing my talent.
Q. What kind of differences have you addressed in preparation for Willie, as opposed to getting Billy Jo, which was the original opponent?
GABRIEL ROSADO: The game plan doesn’t really change as much as far as they and Billy Jo. They’re both southpaws. We were already working with southpaws and things like that, and they kind of in a way have similar styles. I think Billy Jo is probably a little more slicker. But you know it’s really the game plan didn’t change. Both guys can box, and move and things like that. It’s just the style we’re working on, and it’s pretty much the same size, so nothing changed.
Q. Willie, given the opportunity to take this fight, what are the things that you did address? What did you make sure you had to have going on before saying yes?
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: Obviously, business first. I mean, make sure that we were satisfied with the money and the opportunity that comes after it. But we don’t look past anybody, so we just kept training camp going. Like I said, we were approached with the Billy Jo Saunders fight first. And GABRIEL ROSADOat least made it to negotiations.
When Billy Jo Saunders was asked to fight Willie Monroe, they immediately said, nope. But at least they made it to negotiations with Rosado. So I mean we were already in the gym.
GABRIEL ROSADO: Honestly, I don’t even know who Monroe thinks he is. He thinks he’s a big puncher or something and people are scared to fight him. Nobody knows who the hell he is.
Honestly, I told Gomez just, whoever it is, just make it happen, doesn’t matter. Willie’s acting like he’s being ducked, like he’s some big puncher. He’s really not that special. He only fought one world class —
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: I didn’t know punching was the only aspect of boxing.
GABRIEL ROSADO: You didn’t fight nobody. You didn’t fight no world class fighters. You fought Triple-G and you quit, and I’m going to make you quit too.
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: That’s all you can say. But you’re like the middleweight guy. Every time a middleweight has you, he’s run through you.
GABRIEL ROSADO: You ain’t special. You fought a bunch of ESPN fighters.
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: Okay, and I’m about to fight another one.
GABRIEL ROSADO: Okay. Whatever. I beat world class fighters. I’ve got world class fighters on my resume. You didn’t beat nobody special. You’re a bum, dude. I’m going to show you a bum.
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: Okay.
Q. Why do you think it was so hard to get Saunders in the ring? This is for Gabe and Willie. Why do you think Saunders has been reluctant to get in the ring with you guys?
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: I don’t know.
GABRIEL ROSADO: I don’t know. At the end of the day, I’ve got Willie Monroe and we’re going to take care of business. That’s all it is. I’m not even going to think about Billy Jo Saunders.
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: Y’all know me from the past. I don’t do that much jaw-jacking and talking. Come September 17th we’re going to see. That’s all. I don’t have much to say. I’ve never been a talker. All my interviews and everything, you never saw me talk smack. That’s just not my style.
GABRIEL ROSADO: But I’m just saying you say Billy Jo ducked you and all this shit. Nobody’s ducking you because nobody knows who you are. So it doesn’t matter. That’s what I’m saying.
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: Okay, nobody knows who I am, but come September 17thwhen the opportunity comes up.
GABRIEL ROSADO: Let’s see on the 17th. Step up to the plate, we’ll see.
Q. Eric, you mentioned that the winner of this fight could potentially be going on to face Canelo in December, if I heard that correctly. Does that mean you are not wholly confident in having to deal with Billy Jo Saunders consummated for December given what happened with this September card?
ERIC GOMEZ: Yeah, you know what? We’re keeping all the doors open. Obviously, you know, we weren’t able to get the fight done with Billy Jo Saunders. I haven’t closed the door yet.
But, look, we’ve got two guys that are going to go at it. This is a real fight. Gabe wants to prove that he still belongs and he’s in the upper echelon of boxing, and he’s got a tough fight. Willie Monroe wants to do the same thing. So these guys put on a great fight, a great show, anything’s possible. We’re going to keep all avenues open, all doors open. I don’t see why the winner of this fight shouldn’t get a Canelo fight. So we’re going to keep everything open.
Q. Where do things stand in negotiations, if there are any, with Saunders and his team right now?
ERIC GOMEZ: Right now they’re stalled. We’re going to wait till after. We’re going to get together with Frank Warren, the week of the fight. He also represents Liam Smith. So we’re going to sit down again and see what happens. But I’m interested in seeing the outcome of this fight. There is real animosity. You can hear both guys and there is real animosity there.
We’ve been working with Rosado now for about three years. He’s a guy that’s got a lot of heart, and just talking to Arty Pelullo, he’s told me that Willie Monroe is one of the toughest son of a guns out there. He’s worked with him for a long time now as well, and this is going to be a real fight. These guys are going to go at it. They’re at each other’s throats now. I’m excited.
Q. Then for the fighters, hearing that Canelo fight could be in the balance, how much more does that add to the fight that each of you obviously already wanted?
GABRIEL ROSADO: I know not to think ahead. So I’m not even thinking about that. I’m just thinking about what’s ahead of me and that’s it. I’ve been in this game long enough to know, you know, nothing in boxing is promised. So they could say that Canelo’s next, but that don’t mean nothing if I don’t win the fight. So I’m just thinking about winning this fight and looking good. And I want to do it by knockout. So that’s just what’s on my mind. I’m not thinking ahead of that.
Q. Willie, obviously you wanted this fight and you wanted this appearance on pay-per-view. What does having Canelo potentially in the balance add to you for the this fight?
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: Definitely a motivation factor. But I mean, I’ve got to focus on what’s in front of me and I can’t look past anybody. I mean, I wouldn’t look past and infant let alone Gabe Rosado. So you’ve got to focus on what’s in front of you. And if Canelo’s next, so be it. I’m just ready. I’m ready. (Indiscernible).
Q. Willie, as the co-main event for this fight taking place, do you feel an added pressure getting into the ring or are you doing anything to prepare differently for this?
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: Oh, no, we’re just keeping everything the same. The fight is the fight. Once the bell rings it could be either one of us. So just staying focused and focusing on the task at hand.
Q. Gabe, just curious, I know that you really came close to fighting Saunders off of this card. And you guys had a little back and forth when that fight didn’t take place. You’re known as a guy that’s fought everybody and is highly skilled. At the same time, Saunders called you a world class journeyman. I’m just curious your reaction to being called that, and what do you think about when people do refer to you as a journeyman?
GABRIEL ROSADO: Obviously, if they really believe that he would have taken the fight because why would he want a tough fight if the next fight is supposed to be Canelo? I would assume he wouldn’t want an easy fight. So if I was so easy, he would have taken the fight. So if y’all believe in it, that’s on y’all. Obviously, he didn’t take the fight because he feels it’s a threat.
But I’m not even thinking about Billy Jo no more. I’m just focused on this fight and that’s it?
WILLIE MONROE, JR.: Thanks to everybody, thanks to HBO. Thanks to pay-per-view. Thanks to Golden Boy and Banner Promotions for giving Willie Monroe this opportunity. And God bless everyone, and September 17th, ready to rock ‘n’ roll.
GABRIEL ROSADO: Yeah, just looking forward to Cowboy Stadium. I’m really, really looking forward to knocking Willie Monroe out.
ERIC GOMEZ: Arthur Pelullo to say a few words.
ARTHUR PELULLO: Yes, I want to thank everybody and I want to thank Eric and Oscar. You can see it’s going to be a heck of a co-feature. Two good fighters, and Willie showed a lot of class today, so it should be an excellent show. I believe that the winner at all time will be in a very good position for Canelo. Thanks a lot to everybody at Golden Boy.
ERIC GOMEZ: I want to echo that it’s going to be an exciting fight. I’m very excited. You just heard it from Gabe Rosado, he’s predicting a knockout. You know he’s going to come guns blazing. It’s going to be a very good fight.
I want to thank everybody that was on the call today. It’s going to be a very exciting undercard. A little bit of everything. You have two guys with their backs against the wall. Going at it, do or die. Then you’ve got some great up and coming fighters, JOSEPH DIAZ, JR., Diego De La Hoya and tough fights with Cancio and Del Valle. Don’t miss it.
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