Bayamón, P.R.- Fighters, trainers, managers and fans were present at today’s weigh-in for tomorrow’s boxing card where Juan Manuel “Juanma” López will defend his WBO super bantamweight title against Gerry “Fearless” Peñalosa. A pro-Juanma (24-0 22KO’s) crowd cheered for their fighter as he weighed in at 121.5 lbs after Peñalosa (53-6-2 36KO’s) did the same at 121.8 lbs.
Among the present was Freddie Roach, head trainer for two time world champion Peñalosa, who took some time to speak with 15rounds.com. Here is what he had to say about López and the upcoming fight.
15rounds.com- What have you seen in Juanma Lopez’s fights that you think could give you an edge over him?
Freddie Roach- Well you know Juan’s a very good fighter, great puncher, he’s a fast starter…I told Gerry the beginning of the fight is going to be really rough, the first four rounds you’re gonna have to bite down and fight hard and I think as we get into the later rounds…it’s gonna favor us…again We know the first four rounds are gonna be really rough but Gerry’s prepared for that and once We head into the later rounds I think you’l find that it’ll favor us.
15rounds- Do you think the fact that Gerry didn’t have to work so hard to make weight will help you in that game plan?
F.R.- Gerry…made weight pretty easily but … I don’t think that’s a factor in the fight. I think it’s just two good fighters and Gerry Peñalosa has a lot of experience, he’s a very crafty fighter, his defense is great so I don’t think López has ever faced someone with quite the experience that Peñalosa has so I think We can pull this around.
15rounds- Anything else you would like to add?
F.R.- I’ts gonna be a great fight and it’s good to be here in Puerto Rico, I’d rather have the fight maybe in the Phillipnes, but we’re here and my guy is ready and We came all this way to win.
López spoke briefly to the press as his voice was almost gone due to what he claims is a regular process of his weight loss. Still he made himself available to the press for several minutes after the weigh in.The Puerto Rican champion spoke confidently as usual and once again said he was certain that he would knock his opponent out.
When asked about Roach’s assessment that Peñalosa would look better in the later rounds because of his experience, López said “..that has nothing to do with it because I prepare well for twelve rounds and that my last three fights have lasted three rounds is not my fault…and if the fight goes longer than four I assure you that any way I’m gonna be victorious and the longer the fight goes the more he’s gonna be damaged.”
“I’m stronger than him, physically it’s evident, I’m younger…the experience, it’s just about not letting it put pressure on me, not let it get me uncomfortable, fight round by round calmly.”
For the co-feature, a battle of unbeaten light welterweight prospects, Lamont “Havoc” Peterson (26-0 12KO’s) of Memphis, Tennessee weighed in at 138.4lbs. with his opponent Frenchman “Small Leonard” Willy Blain (20-0 3KO’s) weighing in at the limit of 140lbs. They will be fighting for the Interim version of the WBO Title hel by Timothy Bradley.
4 rds- 185lbs.
Tyler Hughes (20-0 3KO’s)183.7 lbs. vs. Carlos Negrón (1-0 1KO)183.8 lbs.
Anthony Napunyi (14-4 7KO’s)119.3lbs. vs. Juan Mercedes (22-2 15KO’s)118lbs
Jesús Martínez (18-5 11KO’s)115.8lbs. vs. David Quijano (8-1-1 6KO’s)116.1lbs.
Eric Cruz (5-2 5KO’s)135.8lbs. vs. Max Rivera (8-1 4KO’s)
Christopher Rivera (2-1 2KO’s)126lbs. vs. Nelson Casanova (1-0 1KO)125.9lbs.
Luis Daniel Colón(4-6 2KO’s)134.6lbs vs. Orlando Félix (10-1 3KO’s)136.9lbs
Donovan Castañeda (9-5 6KO’s)148.7lbs vs. Jorge Meléndez (6-0-1 6KO’s)150.6lbs
Andrés “Pajita” Navarro (3-2-1 3KO’s)137lbs vs. Enrique Quiñones (4-8-1)