"I'm looking to jump in there ASAP; as soon as possible. We are looking at some things. They asked me about November 14th back at the CONSOL, so they definitely want me back down there, but my thing is I'm on a campaign to get the title holders. I don't know too much about anybody. You'll be surprised how little I know about these boxers. My thing is to work on my game and be worried about me, but they know exactly who I am...I don't have talent; my gift is my work ethic. I will outwork anybody. I want it so bad, I'm willing to go through whatever it takes to learn it and now I've got it and I have mastered it and now here I come," stated lightweight contender Monty Meza Clay, who talked about latest win, a potential move up in weight, his future plans and more. Check it out!
PC: You're coming off of a Fight of the Year candidate against Alan Herrera. How are you?
MMC: Everything is going great, man. I set out to do what I said I was gonna do and I came through. I did what I said I was gonna do and it felt great. I actually did more than I expected of myself. I put the work in, and if you put the work in, you get greater results.
PC: When you're in shape, you can overachieve and that fight was a hell of a performance.
MMC: Thank you very much, man. I really appreciate that. I'm actually thankful to Tyson and those guys for giving me the opportunity to display my talents on television. This is actually what I've been doing. I've been shining, so don't call it a comeback; I been here for years. They gave me an opportunity and I appreciate it.
PC: How soon are you looking to get back in there?
MMC: I'm looking to jump in there ASAP; as soon as possible. We are looking at some things. They asked me about November 14th back at the CONSOL, so they definitely want me back down there, but my thing is I'm on a campaign to get the title holders. I don't know too much about anybody. You'll be surprised how little I know about these boxers. My thing is to work on my game and be worried about me, but they know exactly who I am.
PC: I actually talk to a lot of fighters that don't follow the sport closely and don't really even watch boxing.
MMC: I bet it's the greater fighters too because I promise you I have no idea who is who. I don't even watch boxing like that at all. I mean, the bigger fights I catch up with them, but I don't know who the champs are or any of that. I let my team do all that and I work on my game.
PC: Any surprises from Herrera?
MMC: He was stubborn, I can tell you that. And I was actually pretty shocked at how hard he was hitting. I knew I had to turn it completely on. But that's the only thing about him that was surprising to me was how hard he was hitting. But That's when I knew I had to turn it on; completely on. That's the only thing that surprised me was how hard he was hitting, but I knew because anytime you are fighting a Mexican, just be ready for what comes after you. That's just the kind of fight I expected and that's how I like it.
PC: There are some pretty good lightweights out there. Mickey Bey just beat Miguel Vazquez for a title, as well as guys like Gamboa, Crawford, and Beltran are out there.
MMC: Man, they've had me at the top. Every time I'm supposed to get a shot, they make me work, but I'll do what I gotta do. I'm coming, man, and I want my hands on every last one of 'em.
PC: You have dealt with some injuries and had some fights fall through; somewhat of a snake bitten career. Is that how you would describe your career, and how are you planning on moving forward after a big win?
MMC: It's the story of my life. One word that would sum up who I am is perseverance. I just keep on persevering and plugging away. I have been plugging at it for a long time and I am who I say I am and I am who I set out to be. My opportunity is coming up. I got a lot of big fights and a lot of big fights cancelled. When you named those lightweights, I was scheduled to fight two or three of those guys already, but it's always something. My last one with Beltran, I caught a major concussion. I had to cancel that 3 weeks before the fight. Timing is everything. I really needed that and I was down on myself a lot. I need that fight, but I could not afford...the way I was feeling and performing in the gym, I couldn't afford to take that fight off, but I couldn't take it and go on television and get embarrassed. That was a huge decision that I had to make 3 weeks prior to the fight. I'm in the gym and these boys was giving me the blues and I don't get that from nobody, so that's when I was like, I can't take this fight. I was scheduled to fight Gamboa a couple of years ago. I was scheduled to fight Broner and that's when Lamont Peterson and Amir Khan rematch didn't happen and the entire card got scrapped and I had been in camp for about 7 weeks already. Everybody walks their own road and mine is the hard one. I remember being told years ago from a fighter, "be hopeful that you don't have to go through the storm and be blessed if you're able to go around it," and years later, now I see I wasn't fortunate to go around it I had to go through it. But I'm still here and making noise.
PC: Do you feel like everything that you've been through and your experience is what separates you from these other lightweights?
MMC: Absolutely. I say that all the time. These are young boys to me, man. They haven't been through what I've been through in the ring or in life and that's how I fight. I fight with my emotions. When you see me in there, you seeing me swinging everything I done been through already. It's always tough for me. My biggest thing is that I keep the faith, man, and this faith thing is working. They say faith as big as a mustard seed and mine is a lot greater than that. Things are gonna change around for me because I kept swinging. I'm a real fighter, bruh. These guys are out here playing pattycake and they make me laugh. I'm a real fighter and I'm so smart in there now that I'm at my best mixing it up with these guys because I'm so comfortable in the ring now. I'm so aware and my vision is so good, if you really dissect my last fight, that was game in there, man. That was game, bruh. I was inside, slipping, dipping and rolling. And my power held up late and I got him out of there in the last round. My thing is I don't get tired. I don't accept fatigue because I'm out here really living that fighter's life. You guys were blessed with a gift and your gift is your talent. I hear people say I have talent. I don't have talent; my gift is my work ethic. I will outwork anybody. I want it so bad, I'm willing to go through whatever it takes to learn it and now I've got it and I have mastered it and now here I come.
PC: Do you have any regrets?
MMC: No sir. I don't have no regrets because I wouldn't be who I am now if I did. It's called a point and time. I was on my way up trying to learn and I didn't understand it. Now that I'm older and I understand it, I'm not worried about nothing. I promise you I'm not just saying that. These guys can't beat me. I been through too much. I mastered my skills and mastered my craft, let's go. Whoever is in front of me has to go and I'm gonna get him out of the way easy. My last fight was easy for me. I like to do that. I like that type of fight. That's cool for me. That's when I'm at my best. When the shit hit the fan, no one can help you in that ring anyway, so I'm confident in myself. I wish some things didn't go down certain ways, but I don't regret anything. I had a guy steal from me, one of my treasurers, and that's who put me down there in Mexico. They wasn't able to win a purse bid...whatever...I can write a book. My life is a movie, man.
PC: Man, I wish you the best and I hope to see you in some more exciting fights soon. Is there anything else you want to add?
MMC: I'm a free agent and I'm out here campaigning to fight any an everybody in the lightweight division!
[ Follow Percy Crawford on Twitter @MrLouis1ana ]