"June 1st I will be fighting in Seattle at Battle at the Boat with Brian Halquist Promotions. They can expect to see a great fight. I'm putting forth a lot of work and effort to come out victorious. At the same time, I know Brian Halquist has me in a good situation and as far as I'm concerned, it's going to be the same thing as usual. Then after that, we are gonna drop down in weight and we are looking to get on TV by the middle of the year or the end of the year and just continue to grow," stated up-and-coming jr. middleweight Zachary Cooper, who talked about his next fight on June 1st and much more. Check it out!
PC: Your fight is just weeks away on June 1st. How are you feeling?
ZC: Camp's going great, man. We are sparring the best. I asked to spar the best and I wanna work with the best, so June 1st, there will be no questions. I'm going to put forward my best efforts, put forward my best work, and show what I've done in camp.
PC: What's the process to this taper down until fight night?
ZC: As far as what I'm doing in the gym, I got a lot of great people to watch. I got J'Leon Love, Floyd Mayweather, Ishe Smith, Lanell Bellows, Cuba, and other fighters and I just watch them and I just learn and steal everything. I'm a sponge. Not to mention, everything that I'm doing with Jeff [Mayweather]. I learn a lot from my coach. He will sit there and break down things and let me know little things to look for and be like, "Let's do this or work on that." For me, it usually starts with me waking up about 6 in the morning and I will go run. I have something light to eat and then go train at about 12. And then I will go home and rest for about 20 minutes and then I will go for another run and then it depends on what the day calls for. I may be swimming or running in the mountains or doing weights. It's a long process, but when I'm in camp, I eat, sleep, and drink boxing. I watch tapes of other fighters and see what I can learn from other fighters.
PC: Do you prefer to watch tapes on other fighters to pick up things they do that you can incorporate in your game or do you prefer to watch film on your opponents?
ZC: I see about 1, maybe 2 tapes on my opponents to see what type of style they have and just to see what I'm getting into; and I usually only watch 1 or 2 rounds. But for the most part, after I watch that initial 1 or 2 rounds of my opponent, I go and watch other fighters. I watch Floyd, I watch Timothy Bradley, Paulie Malignaggi, I watch Austin Trout, and I even watch Adrien Broner. I watch everybody just so that I can learn more and more.
PC: Last time we spoke, we talked about the chemistry between you and Jeff. How important is that to you and are you guys still building on that foundation?
ZC: Ah man, Jeff's my guy. This relationship is a friendship and it's also trainer and fighter. I learn a lot of things from him and I talk to him and I tell him stuff like, "I want to work on this and that." Even when I'm hitting the mitts, I want to do this and that. And then Jeff will see something and he will be like, "Hey, you need to do this and do that." It's a great relationship because I can talk to him about anything, and not just boxing, but about stuff going on in my life. We will go out and eat and he's just a great person to be around and we're building on it more and more. I hear how some fighters have tough times and they will end up leaving a trainer, but I'm right there with my man until the end.
PC: You watched Floyd Mayweather prepare for Robert Guerrero. Given what you were seeing in the gym, did you expect the finished product that we got?
ZC: Oh, exactly! It's exactly what I said. I knew Guerrero would come out probably the first 2 rounds and go real hard and he would end up getting touched and lose those rounds, but he is going to get the hell beat out of him every single round and I said that. A lot of people criticized me because they were saying, "He's different. He wants Floyd's 0 and he's not one of these guys that's just coming for the paycheck." No, he was completely outclassed. Floyd took that personal. The thing that a lot of people don't know about Floyd is Floyd is a good guy. You sit there and you start talking about his family, which Guerrero's dad did, and badmouthing his name; there is a difference between promoting a fight and taking personal attacks and Floyd took that to heart. Floyd never took any shots at Guerrero's wife or anything that they been through or nothing like that. I believe Floyd took that personal and that's why he beat him so bad. He beat him bad. That was ugly; real ugly!
PC: You told me before we started this interview that Floyd had tougher battles during sparring than the Guerrero fight provided him with.
ZC: Yeah, he was in battles this whole camp. He asked for the best. He could have sparred people around the gym or other people that came in, you know what I mean, but he wanted Errol [Spence]. Errol wasn't even in camp to begin with and Floyd was like, "Yo, go get Errol." Errol gave him good work. That's the thing about Floyd is he wants the best. A lot of people say that he ducks people and stuff like that, but he's not ducking anyone. He proved on the 4th that he can beat anyone in this sport and after 5 fights or whatever he has left, boxing is not gonna go down, but they are really gonna miss Floyd. If you haven't been to a Floyd fight before it's over, you gotta see it because there will never be anything like it again.
PC: What can fans expect from you on June 1st and do you want this fight to catapult you into a busy 2013?
ZC: Oh yeah, June 1st I will be fighting in Seattle at Battle at the Boat with Brian Halquist Promotions. They can expect to see a great fight. I'm putting forth a lot of work and effort to come out victorious. At the same time, I know Brian Halquist has me in a good situation and as far as I'm concerned, it's going to be the same thing as usual. Then after that, we are gonna drop down in weight and we are looking to get on TV by the middle of the year or the end of the year and just continue to grow. That's the main thing.
PC: I'm sure we will get one more in before your actual fight; best of luck to you. Is there anything else you want to add?
ZC: I want to give a shout out to Azad Watches, Future Legend, Jersey Pump, Halquist Promotions, Brian Halquist, The Money Team, Floyd Mayweather, Team ZipEmUp and Team Cooper; everybody that's been with me! And I gotta shout out my home team Seattle, the 206.
[ Follow Percy Crawford on Twitter @MrFighthype ]