In this video interview with FightHub, trainer Joel Diaz talks about teaming up with Lucas Matthysse for his return to boxing and his impressions. Check out some excerpts of what he had to say below...
Diaz on what changes he’s seen in Matthysse since training him:
“Well the first area of improvement for Lucas is he’s happy. And, you know, I always like to analyze the whole team and see where things went wrong in the past...and one of the areas was he was never happy, he was always in a bad mood, you know there was a lot of things that he didn’t want to do. And for this camp he was always smiling, happy, he wanted to do things. And one thing I’ve always said, one of my theories is this: a happy fighter always performs better.
“And one of the things I wanted to make him realize that he is a great fighter, he has a lot of power, he has a lot of potential to become a world champion, and that made it easy for camp and for him to perform the way he performed through the whole camp and that was great.”
On how he rates Matthysse’s power, whether there’s any improvement:
“You know I can’t really answer that question as far as improvement because I never done mitts with him before. But I can see, just by what I saw before, I know he has power. I mean just the power that I feel in his punches, in the last week, it was something different. He has a heavy hand. By nature he just has heavy hands. And every time he hits you, whether it’s with power or not, he’ll hurt you.
“That’s the difference between him and other fighters...I don’t know, maybe his body structure, his bones are heavy, but every time he hits you, if it’s a jab, a hook, a uppercut, whatever — I mean, you can feel it. He does damage with every punch.”
On criticism that Matthysse is washed up and how much more he has in the tank:
“Well it’s all based on him. I can tell you this, if I was to say how much more time he has in the sport, I can give you three good years...but it’s all determined by their mentality. You know there’s a lot of fighters where you can see the performance, but you don’t know what in the mind...I’ve trained Ruslan Provodnikov, I’ve trainer other fighters that they’re seasoned fighters and they train, but you don’t know what’s in their mind.
“Any fight can be their last at this point. I mean they’re not young anymore, they’re not in their main prime like they were when they were 25-26 years old. But every fighter has a story, and every fighter has a mentality where they only know the time they’re gonna keep boxing because they been through so much, so many training camps, so many fights, so many wars, and time-to-time there’s somebody who rings that bell in you that says ‘hey, you know what, let me think about it twice.’ But they only know, because I was a fighter and I know that myself.”