Josh Taylor is bidding to become Scotland’s first undisputed champ and owner of all four world titles when he fights Jose Ramirez on May 22 in Las Vegas.
Josh had an acrimonious split with trainer Shane McGuigan last year and this will be JT’s second outing with Ben Davison – Tyson Fury’s former trainer. He interestingly describes himself as being much happier without ‘other things’ going on, alluding to the troubles behind the scenes w/ the McGuigs. He also feels he’s “more rounded” under Ben despite Shane leading him to unified titles, which feels like a slight dig given the success he shared with Shane. Pls include red if possible.
The interview covers:
– How Taylor much happier with new trainer Ben Davidson as opposed to Shane McGuigan
– His beloved Hibs being in the the cup final on the same day
– Targeting a “once in a lifetime opportunity” to face Terence Crawford at Edinburgh Castle or Easter Road
– He has a taekwondo background and said he’d love to have an MMA fight one day
What’s the difference between working with Ben over Shane?
“It’s completely different in all aspects. It’s unbelievable. The two of them are very good coaches, but the two are very different. With Ben I believe he’s added more to my game, more to my arsenal and you’ll see that may 22nd. He’s added loads to my game, you’ll see on fight night what we’ve been working on.
“I am just completely happier. The way he breaks things down, going over the fundamentals [highlighting] some things I was forgetting and things I do very well that I was neglecting that should be doing more of. He just covers all bases. I believe I’m a more well rounded fighter than what I was before.
“I’m more relaxed – I’m enjoying what I’m doing. I’m not frustrated or unhappy about other things that are going on. I’m totally content and focusing totally on what I’m doing. I just believe that I’m in a much better place.”
Taylor targets “once in a lifetime opportunity” to face Terence Crawford at Edinburgh Castle
“I’d love to have a fight at either Easter Road or Edinburgh Castle, that would be the whole bucket list ticked off. I’d have achieved everything I set out to achieve in the sport. That would be all my wishlist ticked off.
“A fight at Edinburgh Castle in the middle of the summer with the castle lit up in the background at night would be a once in a lifetime opportunity. It would be great to get Terence Crawford over or a massive title defence. It would be awesome – any fight at that venue would be amazing.”
Taylor predicts “absolutely massive celebrations” if he and Hibs both win on May 22
“It’s going to be on FITE TV in the UK, tune in because you’re going to watch history being made, it’s got the making of an absolute firecracker, a real gun fight.
“I believe it will be a classic performance, a total dominant performance from me. He’s going to get blown away by the tornado, I am going to blow him away. It’s going to be the toughest fight of his life for sure. He’s never been in with anybody like me, his time as unified champion at 140 has come to an end and it’s my time to shine.
“On the same day, on the 22nd, my team Hibs are playing in the Scottish Cup Final. If they win on May 22 and I win, it’s a great day for Edinburgh and a great day for Scotland. It would be absolutely massive and the celebrations will be huge when I get back. It will be brilliant, it will be amazing. To be a sports fan in Scotland for sure it will be great.”
You were a decorated taekwondo champion as a kid, would you ever like to switch to MMA?
“I’d definitely give it a go that’s for sure. I wouldn’t be afraid to give it a try, I think it would be brilliant. I’d need to learn a lot of the groundwork game, but I’d definitely get in that cage and have a go, 100 percent.
“I’m focusing on boxing for the next three or four years. I want to achieve as much as I possibly can. I’m totally focused on boxing right now, I’m not concerned about switching codes right now, but if the opportunity came along of course i’d have a fight, have a go – it would be brilliant. I just don’t think I could take the shin kicks!”
Tyson Fury has given Taylor some advice
“It’s been pretty good, it’s been pretty lively. Obviously I’ve been training my guts off but it’s been a good laugh as well and making that training the little more enjoyable. He’s been giving me little bits of advice, stuff he thinks I could do and things that could work in the fight. He’s been giving me some really good bits of advice.
“We made the decision to rent the house away from hotels and the strip, so there’s no distractions. We’re being very professional and taking care of business. We are out here taking things very, very seriously.”
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