It is my usual modus operandi to spend fight day thinking about nothing except the fight. So as usual, I’ve got DirecTV channel 123 on playing an endless loop of the Top Rank promo for tonight’s “Final Impact” PPV event featuring the rematch of Julio Cesar while I work around the house. I began to fiddle with the fighters’ quotes (and those of Bob Arum) to entertain myself. Here’s what I came up with:
Chavez: If I win, I do it well. And if I lose, I do it with honor… I don’t like to make any kind of excuses. If I say it, it’s because it really happened. When I woke up I had a sore throat…I felt a bit dizzy…I was shivering. I went and saw the doctor immediately – he told me I had a fever and a sore throat.
Vanda: I guess when the going gets tough, if you’ve got to make excuses, that’s fine. I’ve had my ass kicked, I’ve kicked ass – I don’t make excuses.
Chavez: The last thee rounds of my first fight [with Vanda] I fought out of courage, because I was feeling that I would pass out.
Bob Arum: The first fight was a very, very exciting fight – Chavez early on looked like he would blow past Vanda, and then Vanda came on in the second part of the fight and by the tenth round Chavez was clinging to life…and Julio Junior was lucky to escape with a victory.
Chavez: I’ve addressed things much more seriously, because I want to make a name for myself in this sport. I think the doors are open for me, I just have to follow the right path.
Arum: He’s got to prove his endurance…either he preserves his strength in the early rounds and doesn’t throw as many punches…or demonstrates that he can go with a tremendous workrate in the early rounds and still have the strength left, and the stamina in the later rounds, to be as dominant as he was earlier in the fight.
Chavez: I’m going to beat Matt Vanda with a bang. That’s all I’ll say. I’m going to beat Matt Vanda.
Vanda: He’s going to get knocked out. We’re going to end it before ten rounds is over.
Chavez: He couldn’t even knock me down in the last three rounds [of the first fight], when I was barely holding on. Does he really think he can do it now that I’m 100 percent?
Vanda: He’s nothing special.
Chavez: I’m going to beat Matt Vanda clearly. That’s all I’ll say.
Vanda: I’m just going to go in there and beat his ass.