On the Freddie Roach-Julio Cesar Chavez Jr Partnership
Freddie Roach: "This kid, he came in one day. He wanted to watch Pacquiao work out. He says, 'You guys are a little bit nuts, but I want that. Can you give me that?' I says, 'No problem.' To be the best, you have to work hard. I think he finally saw that and realized that. Up to that point, he had a bad reputation of being a very lazy person. And since he's with me, that is not true. His work ethic is great. Some have said, well, he's just trying to impress you. I said, I don't care why he's working hard. I'm happy."
Roach: "He is a hard worker. And he does care, and he wants to be better at what he does, and he's getting better."
Julio Cesar Chavez Jr: "Freddie is my other complement. Without Freddie, I couldn't achieve 100% of everything I'm doing. He's just the extra push I need in boxing. I think that he has changed me. He made me a true fighter. With him, I've learned how to train at the highest level."
Kevin Iole, Yahoo! Sports: "I remember saying, 'Freddie, why are you taking this guy on? He's not going to amount to anything and you're training the best guys in boxing.' But Freddie saw something in Julio, just like he saw something in Manny Pacquiao back in 2001, and he said, 'This guy has the ability to fight if he does these certain things.' And to Julio's credit, he listened to Freddie, he didn't argue, he said, 'I will do whatever it takes to become a world-class fighter.' And under Freddie Roach, he's become exactly that."
Bernardo Osuna, ESPN: "Julio had been working really well under the tutelage of his father, but once Freddie came in, they fine-tuned those aspects in terms of tactics and what you need to do."
Julio Cesar Chavez Sr: "Yes, definitely. Freddie Roach is a vital part of my son Julio's career. I think Freddie Roach and my son Julio understand each other very well. And besides that, he's the best trainer in the world, and he brings out all of the potential that Julio has inside. He has helped him to correct mistakes, formulate strategies for his fights, and also, he has brought out all of my son's fighting potential."
Roach: "He wanted to improve himself in that fight, because he was embarrassed by the amount of punches he could get hit by. And I was really thrilled by his actions and what he wanted to do to improve himself."
Chavez Jr: "Against Zbik, I started attacking the body right from the start, because he was a very hard fighter to hit. And from the sixth round on is when I realized that he was dropping his arms and starting to get tired."
Chavez Jr: "Manfredo marked a total change in my career. That's why I say that I learned a lot from that fight. From that moment, I was a different fighter, and I started to train harder. I learned what it was like to fight at the highest level. Manfredo was a very tough fighter, but I was in the best condition of my career and I was able to knock him out easily."
Chavez Jr: "Rubio was a very experienced fighter, and difficult. But for that fight I had a lot of weight problems. I had to lose 13 pounds in 24 hours, and that really killed me, and that is why the fight was a bit harder. But really, I should have won that fight easily."
Osuna: "Rubio even told me, you know what, it's not that Julio hits so hard, it's just that you can feel the weight of his punches. And when you hit him, a solid shot, you don't move him. And it's very disheartening."
Chavez Jr: "I started testing him, little-by-little in the first rounds. In the first two rounds, I saw what he had, and I started getting to him. Getting him to fight my fight. I attacked the body and I broke him down. ... I knew he couldn't keep up with my tempo, and the knockout really came by itself. I wasn't looking for it. I simply connected with the punch. It hurt him, and I didn't let him go. Andy Lee was a very tough opponent. I think he's the hardest opponent I've fought, the best and the most talented I've faced. But the truth is, I already had the strength, the experience, the maturity, and motivation to easily defeat Lee. I think that fight was a breakthrough, and I became a different fighter."
Iole: "Andy threw some good shots early in the fight, but it was like a middleweight fighting a light heavyweight or something, because Andy Lee certainly just looked a lot smaller and could not hurt Julio at all. And Julio, his body shots were moving him every time."
Osuna: "The title was somewhat handed to him, and he's been able to finally, with victories over Marco Antonio Rubio and Andy Lee, legitimize his spot as a true champion. But in order to be considered the man, he's gotta beat Sergio Martinez. And that's no easy task."