On Tuesday night, while most of us were off to bed, I had the honor of interviewing Nonito Donaire, "The Filipino Flash," who is days away from the biggest fight of his life against WBC/WBO Bantamweight champion Fernando Montiel this Saturday at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas on HBO.
The following is a phone interview transcript with Donaire:
King J: Alright champ, how is everything going?
Nonito Donaire: It's great, we're just excited for this fight and looking forward to it.
KJ: I like percentages can you give me a percentage of how ready you are for Saturday night?
ND: I am about 95 percent right now, just getting the weight down. We're going to go in there 120 percent into the fight.
KJ: Can you break down what your training regime is? The whole nine yards. Can you break that down for all your fans?
ND: Well for me, in my training camp we wake up around 8 o'clock to do some running. Sprint and long distance, alternate. Wake up for the gym at noon time. Go about three hours of sparring. I haven't really sparred less than eight rounds for this camp. We go about 10 or 12 rounds so we are really ready for this fight.
KJ: How many miles do you run everyday?
ND: I'm more of a sprinter. About four to five miles a day. Usually sprinting is my main source of energy and recovery time because that's how I move. I'm not going to be like long distance in my fights. The movements in my fights are not like long distance is more like sprints. I do a lot of sprints for my recovery time and movements, muscles. I can react faster to punches and movements.
KJ: Do you do a certain amount of push ups and sits ups?
ND: Actually I do a lot of sit ups. I work with Michael Bazzel, my strength trainer, and we pretty much stay away from push ups and using the arms. I gain a lot of weight I tend to gain a lot of muscles in my arms and my chest. It's getting hard for me to cut down to 118. So we try to avoid the push ups and the arm muscle workouts and we focus mainly on the core and the abs. At the condo part of the club we have everything here. I haven't been to the Top Rank gym since last week because everything is conveniently here. We got treadmills, saunas, jacuzzis everything's here at the facility where I live. It's so convenient for me cause at this time resting is most valuable.
KJ: Is that the same condo that you invited me to that night of the Amir Khan/Maidana fight?
ND: No that was not the same place. That one was just a place I stayed for a few days. This condo is pretty much the place whenever I'm in Vegas I'll be here most of the time. Pretty much like a home in Vegas. It's a really nice nice place.
KJ: I guess you are doing quite well these days cause you have multiple cribs?
ND: No its just we are doing well. We are blessed.
KJ: How far do you see yourself going up in weight class?
ND: I think right now my body is getting stronger as I go up in weight, I think I can go up to 130. But I want to conquer this division (118) because there is a lot of good here in this division. I want to conquer it.
KJ: I remember we talked and you were looking to take on the champion of the Showtime Bantamweight tournament.
ND: That's correct. I'd rather fight those guys. They are the most challenging fighters in that tournament who can bring out the best in me.
KJ: Let's talk about your trainer Robert Garcia. It seems when his fighters are being trained in camp they usually go down to Oxnard. But in your case Garcia comes to where you are at?
ND: That's correct. Robert knows that the facilities that I have up in the Bay area are good. He knows how hard I train up in the Bay and how good the people are behind me and helping me out and what they do. They are really good at what they do and he knows that and he has a lot of good things to say about it. What game plan I need to do and he's (Garcia) pretty much the brains of how the fights going to be, and he pretty much doesn't have to look over me because I'm not the type to have to be babysat. I usually work hard and do my thing. The last time and this time around it's just a lot of good things with the guys that I work with in the Bay so that's why he doesn't mind me going out there (Oxnard). If he sees me not doing well then he'll most likely ask me to come down to Oxnard.
KJ: You only hear really great things about the Garcia team and their work ethic. Probably one of the most biggest names to come out of the Garcia camp was Fernando Vargas and he told me that Robert was like a father to him and father figure to most of his fighters.
ND: He's a really nice guy and a fun person to kick it with but he really does look out for me in the ring. That's why I am honored and blessed to have my life in his hands in that ring. He will look out for you and your best interest. Yeah that's pretty much what it is what Vargas said is how Robert is like to me. He just looks out for you and takes care of you. He wants the best for you and that's why I have a lot of respect for Robert.
KJ: Champ, you've never been down, correct?
ND: I've never been down so I am planning for that for the rest of my career.
KJ: That's what I like to hear! (laughing)
ND: I'm going to be keep on standing... that's it. (laughing)
KJ: Both of you have been known to showboat. If we are keeping it real, do you think we can expect to see some showboating?
ND: As much as we have respect for each other outside of the ring we have a lot of energy and animosity in terms of winning and knocking out each other. Maybe like a tactic or a plan to showboat. You know he does it, and I do it at times so.
KJ: Now did you see the Bradley vs Alexander fight on HBO? I actually lost a lot of money cause I was going for Alexander and we all know how that went down. So I'm going to have to win back my money on you, bro. You are going to have to let me know what round it's all going to end. (laughing)
ND: (laughing) Well you know we'll try to make it an early round. He's saying he's going to do an early round, I'm do an early round. But we all know that Montiel has a history of when he fights somebody on at top level that he fights conservatively and avoids trying to get hit and stuff. We saw it in the Too Sharp fight we saw it in the Johnny Gonzalez fight, saw it in the Hasegawa fight, he has a tendency to do that. If he gets a chance to take advantage of the situation then he comes forward, but I just want him to go in there and do his thing and I want to do my thing and hope it ends early (laughing).
KJ: Well most people feel that you will just put a clinic on him...as long as you outbox him...
ND: That's the thing, I know that there's no way for him winning if I just use my jab and box him, but is that really entertaining? Is that where I want to be? There's a lot of champions in the past where they can win all the fights but they still never really don't know who they are. I think it's time to do a little something and take a little risk. But I am really starving.
KJ: Alright champ, I appreciate you taking the time to do this interview, you go eat now. I'll see you Saturday. We wish you the best of luck. God bless.
ND: Thank you so much man, I appreciate it, and yeah definitely see you Saturday man. To all my fans, thank you for your support and keep following and you'll see the Filipino Flash and what's going on.
Follow on Twitter: http://twitter.com/KingJ323