Ryan Burton interviewed Cristobal Arreola's lead trainer Henry Ramirez about his performance on December 5, his next fight, and whether or not that upcoming bout will be with fellow Goossen Tutor heavyweight Tony "The Tiger" Thompson.
On Arreola's win over Brian Minto:
"It was typical. We were happy to get back in the ring right away. Some people were questioning us but we felt comfortable coming back that soon."
On the spat between Arreola and Thompson:
"You know the funny thing was it really wasn't so much between Tony Thompson and Chris. Thompson made a comment about wanting to fight Chris and Chris took exception to it. It was more between people from Thompson's camp and Chris than it was between Tony and Chris. If it is something that makes sense financially and it is something that Dan (Goosen) and Al (Haymon) want to put together we wouldn't be opposed to it."
A fight between Arreola (28-1, 25 KO) and Thompson (33-2, 21 KO) sounds perfect for both guys. With the same promoter, it's easy to make, and they've already had some public words between one another. Thompson, 38, was last seen by many in his July 2008 loss to Wladimir Klitschko on HBO. While it was hardly what you'd term an impressive performance for the big lefty, he did a hell of a lot better than anyone else has since Wladimir steamrolled Chris Byrd back in 2006, taking firm control of the heavyweight division. At least Thompson made Wladimir think a little bit before getting stopped in 10, and unlike Hasim Rahman, Sultan Ibragimov, Ruslan Chagaev and Lamon Brewster, you can at least say it looked like Thompson had intentions on winning that stretched beyond divine intervention. (Calvin Brock gets the same respect in his loss to Wladimir.)
Ramirez says Arreola will likely return in March on HBO.
The most disappointing aspect of the interview is that no mention of Arreola's weight is made. I know it's kind of a tired topic, since evidently Arreola has no plans to "correct" the issue any time soon, as he came in at his highest weight ever for the Minto bout, even after filming that cute HBO video about how much harder he would be working after the loss to Vitali Klitschko.
Ramirez himself has taken a marginal amount of criticism, not just because as Arreola's lead trainer, the idea would be he'd be the guy cracking the whip and trying to get this guy to take his career more seriously, but because many watching felt he had no insight to offer during Arreola's beating at the hands of Vitali. It's nothing against Henry Ramirez, really, just that it's another thing Arreola should probably think about if he intends to become a more serious contender than he is now. Ramirez simply isn't that sort of world class guy, and Arreola, as a big, powerful, talented heavyweight with great marketability, shouldn't "settle" on a trainer just because they're friends.