Lem Satterfield

Guerrero worships God, not Mayweather

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When he enters the ring against unbeaten pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr. on May 4 on Showtime Pay Per View, welterweight contender Robert Guerrero says that he will do so “not just to humble Floyd, but to humble the world of boxing.”

During a Wednesday conference call promoting his clash with Mayweather (43-0, 26 knockouts) at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Guerrero (31-1-1, 18 KOs) explained why he believes it is his destiny to dethrone the five-division, eight-belt winner as WBC 147-pound titleholder with his 16th straight win and perhaps his 10th knockout victory during that run.

“You’ve got a lot of people out there who think that Floyd is like a God, the way that he acts, the way that he lives, the way that he spends money and the way that he boasts about stuff,” said Guerrero, 30, who has stated that God wants him to humble Mayweather.

Click here for Mayweather to Guerrero: ‘This fight is not about church’

“He’s got everybody thinking that he’s unstoppable and that nobody can beat him. But Floyd, he believes that there is no blueprint to beat him. You can’t break him down. But you know what? Being a big believer in God, there’s a blueprint for everybody.”

A former two-time featherweight titleholder who also held a major belt at 130 pounds and two interim crowns at lightweight, Guerrero last suffered defeat by a split-decision to Gamaliel Diaz in December 2005, but won their rematch with a sixth-round knockout in June 2006.

Guerrero believes that his aggressive southpaw style can trouble Mayweather as the master boxer was bothered, at times, during unanimous decision victories over left-handers DeMarcus Corley and Zab Judah in May of 2004 and April of 2006, respectively.

“Definitely the southpaw’s style gives him trouble,” said Guerrero. “If DeMarcus Corley and Zab Judah don’t get tired, they’re winning those fights. I believe that.”

Guerrero began to campaign for a bout with Mayweather just prior to jumping from lightweight to welterweight, where his past two 147-pound bouts were unanimous decisions over Selcuk Aydin in July and November’s unanimous-decision victory over two-time titleholder Andre Berto, whom he dropped twice in the bout.

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Guerrero admitted to pursuing Mayweather more aggressively than he had past matchups that never came to fruition with Juan Manuel Marquez and Juan Diaz, becoming increasingly critical of Mayweather’s lavish lifestyle as the world’s highest-paid athlete last year.

“With guys like Marquez and Juan Diaz, and all of these guys that I’ve called out and been in line to fight, you know, this is the guy,” said Guerrero, who dedicated his triumph over Berto to the memory of Hall of Famer and two-time Trainer of The Year, Emanuel “Manny” Steward following his death in October of last year.

“This [Mayweather] is the guy, so he’s the man to beat. He’s the man that, if you beat him, you’re on top. So we had to attack it aggressively and really push hard. With everybody else, Marquez and them, it was ‘win those fights and you’re in line’ (but) they never happened.”

Ringside for Guerrero-Aydin was Guerrero’s cancer-surviving wife, Casey Guerrero, and her donor, Katharina Zech, of Germany. Guerrero chose to pull out of a scheduled March of 2010 clash with Michael Katsidis in order to be with Casey during her recovery from a bone marrow transplant, a decision that was recognized when he received The Bill Crawford Award for Courage In The Face of Adversity from the Boxing Writers Association of America for 2011.

Guerrero also endured had arthroscopic surgery in September of 2011 which repaired a torn tendon in the rotator cuff of his shoulder and had forced him to cancel an August bout with Marcos Maidana.

“There’s a way to beat anything and there’s a way to conquer anything. If you put God first, nothing is stopping you. That’s why I say ‘God puts people in front of you for a reason, and he puts you in front of people for a reason.’ And God has me here for a reason. I’ve looked back at my whole career and my whole life, and you know the trials and the tribulations that I’ve been through,” said Guerrero.

“You know, being right there at the forefront to be able to become something huge in boxing. I’ve always had to drop two steps back and go a different route. But I’ve always known that there is a positive and I’ve always looked at it as ‘You know what? It’s a blessing in disguise.’ With whatever happens. You know, the injuries, my wife getting sick. It’s God putting you through the fire, and to refine you.”

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Last month, Guerrero and his wife visited the set of  of Good Morning America  and host Robin Roberts, as well as the shows of two of the biggest Christian Networks in CBN’s The 700 Club, hosted by Pat Robertson, TBN’s Praise the Lord show with Carman Licciardello.

Guerrero is also this year’s “Ambassador of Hope” spokesperson for BeTheMatch.org along with Roberts in their quest is to help register minorities into the national bone-marrow registry.

Below are Guerrero’s complete responses to questions asked by RingTV.com.

Robert Guerrero on his aggressive pursuit of a bout with Mayweather:

“It’s not getting under the skin or anything, it’s just wanting to be the best in the sport. Wanting to be at the top. With guys like Marquez and Juan Diaz, and all of these guys that I’ve called out and been in line to fight, you know, this is the guy. This is the guy, so he’s the man to beat. He’s the man that, if you beat him, you’re on top.

“So we had to attack it aggressively, and really push hard. With everybody else, Marquez and them, it was, ‘win those fights, and you’re in line,’ and they never happened. So we had to really push hard, and wanting the fight bad and to be the best in boxing, hey, we had to do what we had to do.”

On his comment that he is the man God put in place to humble Mayweather:

“Not just to humble Floyd, but to humble the boxing world. You’ve got a lot of people out there who think that Floyd is like a God, the way that he acts, the way that he lives, the way that he spends money, and the way that he boasts about stuff.

“He’s got everybody thinking that he’s unstoppable, and that nobody can beat him. But Floyd, he believes that there is no blueprint to beat him. You can’t break him down. But you know what? Being a big believer in God, there’s a blueprint for everybody. There’s a way to beat anything, and there’s a way to conquer anything.

“If you put God first, nothing is stopping you. That’s why I say ‘God puts people in front of you for a reason, and he puts you in front of people for a reason.’ And God has me here for a reason. I’ve looked back at my whole career, and my whole life, and you know the trials and the tribulations that I’ve been through.

“You know, being right there at the forefront to be able to become something huge in boxing. I’ve always had to drop two steps back and go a different route. But I’ve always known that there is a positive, and I’ve always looked at it as, ‘You know what? It’s a blessing in disguise.’ With whatever happens.

“You know, the injuries, my wife getting sick.  It’s God putting you through the fire, and to refine you. So that when he puts you in that moment, you’re ready to take off and to glorify him. And this is the moment right here. This is the moment, with a guy that nobody thinks can be beat.

“Everybody is looking at it like, ‘Oh, he’s unstoppable,’ and ‘He’s the best ever,’ blah, blah, blah, and this and that. But it’s time. It’s time. God’s put me in this position for a reason. God’s groomed me and prepped me for this time to take over boxing.”

 On his comparisons with Mayweather to the saga of David and Goliath:

“It’s like David and Goliath. You’ve got David, who, God annointed him and he could have been a fighter. He took on bears and lions and tigers and wolves. And nobody recognized it.

“And when it came time to figting Goliath, everybody thought he was unbeatable. And David came along and took him on, and slayed him with a slingshot and some pebbles. That’s why I say that God put me in this position for a reason.”

On the notion that his southpaw stance will trouble Mayweather:

“Definitely the southpaw’s style gives him trouble. If DeMarcus Corley and Zab Judah don’t get tired, they’re winning those fights. I believe that. I’m ready for this. I’ve had the right fights. I’m built the right way. I’ve had the right experience.

“I’ve been in with a bunch of different styles. I’ve been in with lefties, and a lot of them. I’ve been in with a bunch of different power punchers, brawlers, boxers, sharp guys. Like I’ve said, what I’ve been through, God’s prepped me up for this, and here it is.”

 

 

Photo by Tom Hogan, Hogan Photos, Golden Boy Promotions

Photo by Naoki Fukuda

Photos by Robert Boag, Hogan Photos, Golden Boy Promotions

Photo by Naoki Fukuda

Lem Satterfield can be reached at lemuel.satterfield@gmail.com

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