Andre Berto Meets the Press

By Robert Ecksel on September 5, 2015
Andre Berto Meets the Press
Berto believes he has what it takes to defeat Mayweather. (James Westman Photography)

It may be Mayweather’s last fight, if not his last hurrah, and it looks like he’s going out with a whimper instead of a bang…

There is little enthusiasm for the September 12 fight between Floyd Mayweather and Andre Berto. It may be Mayweather’s last fight, if not his last hurrah, and if so, it looks like he’s going out with a whimper instead of a bang.

Andre Berto met with the press via teleconference call this week and he did his best to suggest, since convincing seems unlikely, that the fight called “High Stakes” will live up to its name.

If Berto has a game plan going in, he’s keeping it to himself.

“We’ve been working on a lot of different tactics,” he said. “Floyd’s a very knowledgeable fighter and you’d have to know how to incorporate a lot of different things and if it’s cutting the ring off or even if it’s fighting in the middle of the ring, you just have to be ready for anything.”

Berto and his team have studied Mayweather, as have we all, and therefore knows what to expect.

“He has skill, he has speed, but he has aerobic and athletic ability to get out of the way of punches, be able to move his feet, and just do a lot of the different things that make it very difficult on guys that are just straight up and down as he likes to say.”

Floyd said he isn’t aware of the criticism surrounding his choice of Berto, not that it matters one way or another. That’s not true of Berto.

“I believe right now anybody in this position would get a nice bit of criticism,” he said, “especially coming off of Floyd beating Pacquiao. As a fighter you have to prepare yourself for it. So I prepare my mind and body. I prepare myself for it and you can’t go into the situation thinking about the critics. The critics talking that way, they’re not in the gym training with us. They do something completely different than what we do. We’re fighters and we’re able to do things that these critics can’t do, so I don’t get affected by the critics.”

By the same token, critics do things that fighters do not. One of the things they do is study a fighter’s record to see if there is evidence of a trend. In Berto’s case, insofar as a possible trend is concerned, he has lost three of his last six fights dating back to 2011 and two of his last four. That doesn’t mean he’s a shot fighter. It means that he lost to Victor Ortiz, Robert Guerrero, and Jesus Soto Karass, two of whom were beaten by Mayweather.

But to point that out, even if it’s factual, is a sure guarantee of being labeled a “hater.”

“I don’t ever really care too much about people who are hating on my situation,” Berto said. “I’ve had haters since I was in middle school. They’re going to be around you. I don’t care too much about criticism and all that but with the Guerrero fight I took some thumbs in the eye. I never got poked in my eye before, not even training, not even fighting and sparring, and I used to hear about how bad it could be but to get poked in both of your eyes, it’s crazy. In the second and third round both of my eyes closed up on me and I never been in that type of situation before, I’ve never had to encounter anything like that before. But I never thought about stopping. I let him just walk me back to the ropes because that’s the only way I knew that he was in front of me to hit because I couldn’t see him. I threw uppercuts and hit him with certain shots and the only way I could know that I hit him with a good shot was if I could hear the crowd.”

Berto wasn’t poked in the eye when he fought Soto Karass, but he suffered another injury in that fight.

“The Soto Karass fight same thing. My shoulder popped out and I slightly tore it the week before the fight, but I fought with injuries plenty of other times and I didn’t know how bad it can get, I didn’t think it was too bad, I thought it probably a torn muscle in there or something small. I hit him solid for the first time in that second round and that shoulder, it just went and it just tore it all apart and I kept fighting, I kept throwing it and every time I threw it I, it would hurt to hell, I’d yell out or the referee would see me making a sound and you know Karass would see that my shoulder’s hurt and I didn’t want to stop, I still thought I could’ve beat him with the left hand.

“Those are guys I should have beat, but some things are out of your control.”

Will things be more in control when Berto fights Floyd Mayweather? It’s hard to imagine.

“Floyd is a guy I’ve known for a long time. He’s the guy that I’ve watched for a very long time so I know his style very well. I don’t fight like Maidana, I don’t fight like Castillo. I’m a different fighter. I don’t have that type of style. Maidana, his style works for him, he’s very reckless and not too much speed, a lot of power and he comes from every angle. That’s not me. I’m fast, I got power, and I can move my feet. I can do a lot more as well. I believe I can apply pressure and box and both will be effective for me.”

Berto believes that he has what it takes to hand Mayweather his first loss.

“End of the day it’s what I believe and what my team believes,” he said. “We put in work. We have the ability to come out victorious September 12th. There’s definitely been some slippage throughout the years, the last couple fights, but like I said he’s one of those guys doesn’t abuse his body. He’s always going to respect his sport so if you respect the sport the sport’s going to respect you. He hasn’t really been taking too much of a toll in the ring and he hasn’t really abused himself outside the ring. He’s going to stay as sharp as he’s been the last few years but it only takes is one single moment you know for somebody to capitalize on it.”

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  1. AkT 04:52am, 09/06/2015

    A flash knockdown for Berto in this Fight will be more of an upset than when Buster douglas beat Tyson in the 90’s.

  2. AKT 04:49am, 09/06/2015

    Irish Frankie - I thought the exact same thing. I really doubt Berto genuinely believes he’ll win.

  3. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 05:01am, 09/05/2015

    This is Floyd’s idea of charity work in the black community….plain and simple.

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