clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Joel Diaz: If Victor Ortiz loses it'll show that he doesn't belong in the sport

Trainer Joel Diaz gives his take on the upcoming Victor Ortiz-Andre Berto rematch.

Joel Diaz, who briefly trained Victor Ortiz, gives his thoughts on Ortiz's rematch with Andre Berto and what it means if he loses. Here's how he sees the fight.

On whether the rematch against Berto is as compelling as their 2011 Fight of the Year:

"No, it's not. I think this time around Victor is a little more complete than Andre. Andre had a massive injury in his previous fights. But at the same time you know, I think that going 12 rounds with Mayweather can build somebody else's confidence. That's why in this fight when I said 'ok, it's gonna be a good fight,' I know that Andre Berto has been wanting to get back in thee ring with Victor again.

"Now Victor is very unpredictable, why, because his training. Is he trained 100%? Is he mentally 100%? Because anybody can ruin your night. Hard work beats talent, any day. If Victor is not 100% focused on his training and he thinks ok, because he has a lot more power he can handle it - and Andre Berto is hungry to take that and redeem himself - it could be a bad night for Victor. But if Victor is 100% ready, he's got the power, and confidence-wise he can get in there and hurt Berto. Soto Karass beat Andre Berto. Mayweather had a sparring session with Andre Berto.

"At this point, Victor Ortiz through all his downfalls, and Jose[sito] Lopez, and Collazo and all that stuff, and Andre Berto with his defeats - I think it's an even fight."

On if he would be surprised by Ortiz putting on a dominating performance and knocking out Berto:

"It won't surprise me because Victor is a natural strong kid...he hits hard with both hands. I just think that if he has the right preparation, the right strategy of a fight against Andre Berto, he can stop him. If he decides to really take it to him like Robert Guerrero did, he's physically strong enough to just pressure and finish Andre whenever he wants."

On if he's spoken to Ortiz since they parted ways:

"Yes, a couple of days ago we spoke. Well we just text. We just say "hello, how you doing, how's training?' and he said 'Good, coach.' I said 'Hey, anything you need just let me know, good luck. Keep yourself working hard.' He said 'I got this.'

"There's no hard feelings with Victor and I. I understand...he's old enough to make his own decisions. He never did anything behind my back...he did everything the right way. He told me 'coach, honestly I don't feel comfortable in Indio, I feel like there's nothing there.' I understand, he's a very active guy, he has his own little zone and stuff, and I just think a happy fighter always performs better...For Victor's fight I will be there. I'll be a fan, I'll be sitting ringside and maybe yelling at him, giving him some instructions from outside."

On if he would be willing to train Ortiz again:

"Before the fight, yeah, but if he goes in there and loses to Andre Berto...I won't. Because by then there's nothing for him anymore. That's the way the boxing business is. And it's not that I'm being rude or mean in any way, but if he loses to Andre Berto, there's really not much for him anymore. Because that's gonna show that Victor no longer belongs in the sport. Because what am I gonna do with him?! Then he's done.

"Right now if he were to say 'coach, I need you for the couple weeks' or whatever, I'll help him. But if he loses Andre Berto...then I won't help him. It's like when he lost to Collazo, I gave him a chance, but before the Collazo fight they called me to work with him and I said 'I'll work with him' but they wanted me to go to Ventura. I can't leave my camp, this is my camp. And after the Collazo fight he comes looking for me because he wanted me to train him, and we won two fights together. They wasn't big name opponents but he really improved a lot. Hopefully that improvement he can take into this fight.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Bad Left Hook Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your global boxing news from Bad Left Hook