Roy Jones: On Calzaghe, Hopkins, and His Legacy

Is he one of the greatest boxers to ever lace up gloves who wiped out all the boxers in his weightclass or is he a fraud who wasted prodigious talent taking safe fights with mandatory challengers?That’s the central question surrounding how history will view the career of Roy Jones.  Unquestionably supreme in talent and skill, Jones stands at age 39 on the precipace of a career defining match Saturday when he steps into the ring with undefeated Joe Calzaghe, who himself is looking to cement legendary statusAs we reach the end of the hype and the buildup to this event rises, AllHipHop got some of Roy’s time to check his on not only on this fight but a potential bout with fellow ageless marvel Bernard Hopkins, his own legacy, and his future in boxing.  Whatever you do, don’t call it a comeback.

AllHipHop.com:

Calzaghe has stated he feels he has a point to prove after the criticism of his

bout with Hopkins, and plans to showcase his boxing skills against you. Since

this strategy could cut down on his volume punching, how does that benefit your

style?

 

Roy Jones:

He needs to change his style to beat me.  He’s said that and I’m expecting

it.  Joe knows he has to step up his game if he has any chance to win this

fight.  I’ll know after the first round if he’s going to come right

at me or if he’s going to try to fight differently, but it’s hard to

change the way you fight if that’s what you’ve always done and been

comfortable with.  

 

AllHipHip.com: It’s

taken years for you to rebound in the public’s mind from the Tarver and Johnson

losses. Although you’ve stated all the pressure is on Calzaghe to maintain his

perfect record, what about the pressure for you to punctuate the end of your

legacy with another career-defining win?

 

Roy Jones:

It’s not up to me where I am among the legends in boxing.  Only God will

determine where my place is among the great boxers who have come before

me.  All I know is that this is the first fight since John Ruiz that I

feel like the ol’ Roy Jones.  I lost 25 pounds of muscle coming down to

fight Tarver and Johnson.  That takes a toll on your body and your energy

level.  If Joe is the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world right now,

then where I am in the mix will truly be defined and signal that I am back.

 

AllHipHop.com:

Once again Hopkins and you are now starting to speak on the possibility of a

rematch if you win on November 8th. What changes do you have to see

from Hopkins at the negotiation table to have this fight not fall through like

it did in 2002 and 2006?

 

Roy Jones:

He has to really want to make the fight.  Look, it’s not been a problem on

my end that Hopkins and I haven’t done the rematch.  I said bring me an

offer and he hasn’t done that.  Joe Calzaghe and I made the fight by

texting each other.  He invited me over to England and we made the

fight.  No one else was involved, just him and me.  If Bernard is

serious about wanting a rematch, then he needs to do the same.  Meet with

me.  Don’t sent promoters or representatives or throw out bogus,

ridiculous offers.  He needs to tell Oscar (De La Hoya, his

promoter) to sit this one out and we’ll talk.

 

AllHipHop.com:

Best case scenario let’s say you defeat Calzaghe and Hopkins in your next two

fights. Assess the remaining challenges in your weight classes in guys like

Chad Dawson, Glen Johnson, and Antonio Tarver.

 

Roy Jones:

That’s looking pretty far ahead and right now I just want to concentrate on

Joe.  I’ll say two things about what’s ahead.  One, if I beat Joe,

I’m sure he won’t go into retirement.  He’ll want a rematch and I owe him

that.  We can do it over in Cardiff if he wants.  Two, this is not my

last fight.  I’ll keep going as long as I still can, so anyone else is

definitely on the table.  I can’t say when I’ll quit.  Hell, I might

just keep going and going and going, like the Energizer bunny.

 

AllHipHop.com: Joe has said you’ve posted some good wins

after the KO losses but are still past your prime years. What are the biggest

adjustments you’ve made in your style to get you to this point of being one

fight away from returning to the top of the pound for pound lists?

Roy Jones:

In my mind, I’m already there.  Like I said, it takes an adjustment, both

in my mind and body to come back down to light heavyweight.  Keep in mind,

there’s only one person alive on this earth who won the middleweight crown,

went up and claimed the heavyweight title and then came back to win the light

heavyweight title and you’re looking at him.  I feel better now than I

have in years.  I’m completely focused on winning this fight where I

wasn’t before.  I guarantee you a victory and I am back.

Roy Jones – AllHipHop

Related Stories