Estrada Vs Bam Press Conference Quotes

May 8 2024

Matchroom Sport chairman, Eddie Hearn 

Welcome everyone to the incredible Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona. This has become a real gem of a fight city for America and for all of Boxing. And what a fight we have for you on June 29, live on DAZN around the world. Two pound-four-pound greats collide. Of course, we have the reigning champion: the WBC and Ring Magazine Champion, Juan Francisco Estrada going up against the two-division World Champion, and one of the youngest stars in the sport today, the pound-for-pound great Jesse ‘Bam’ Rodriguez.

This is another example of the sport coming together to give us the best fights. And what a time for the sport of boxing, particularly with our partners DAZN. Last week you saw a great fight with Canelo Alvarez and Jaime Munguia live on DAZN. This weekend we’re in Mexico for Rocky Hernandez and Erika Cruz’s world championship defenses. And, of course, next week live around the world on DAZN we have Fury  versus Usyk from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, for the Undisputed World Heavyweight Championship. Jai Opetaia and Joe Cordina, our charges, defending their world titles too. The week after that we have Jack Catterall against Josh Taylor in one of the most-anticipated all-British clashes before we go back to Riyadh the week after for Dmitry Bivol and the 5-v-5. All of that, live on DAZN, before we go to Puerto Rico for Subriel Matias and then on to Philadelphia for ‘Boots’ Ennis – the press conference this Friday – wedged between June 29 when these two greats collide in what I think is the fight of the year so far.

There is so much to tell you about and so much to announce. This card is going to be incredible. Of course, already announced for this card is Sunny Edwards – who you all saw last time around against Bam – and he’s back against another former World Champion in Mexico’s Adrian Curiel. It’s a real, tough return for Sunny Edwards. Also on the card, we’re delighted to announce this brilliant clash between Robert Garcia’s charge Arturo Cardenas against a local, Phoenix fighter Danny Barrios in what promises to be an absolute war. And, as we’ll talk about shortly, we’re in final negotiations for Ramla Ali to challenge for the world title against Mexico’s Yamileth Mercado for the WBC title. There’s so much more to come and to be added to this card taking place in this incredible town, which we are delighted to be back here at the Footprint Center. Tickets are now on sale and they are already flying. We’re going the jam this place out – especially with, the day after, Mexico play Ecuador [Copa America] here in Arizona so this city is going to be absolutely buzzing.

Juan Francisco Estrada

I’ve been speaking about this fight and about my career with my promoter Juan [Hernandez]. We did have other options for fights. [Kazuto] Ioka, the Japanese fighter, to go and face and unify. But we really wanted to fight against Bam because we believe it is a great fight. He was also a champion in the lower weight division, so I thought it would be a great test for us to go in there. Also, it’s a great fight for the fans to enjoy too.

I think Bam is a good fighter but you do have to say that. But I think if you look at his best victories like [Carlos] Cuadras, [Srisaket Sor] Rungvisai, then those guys were on the way out. The only good victory that he’s had was the Sunny Edwards fight, which I was present for. Obviously that was at a lower weight and we’ll have to see what he’s like up here fighting against me at this higher weight class because I think that will be the difference on the night. Let’s see what happens on June 29 because I also come into this with a winning mentality and the mentality of winning this fight convincingly. If it is by KO, then even better.

It’s going to be a wonderful fight, which people coming here can expect that. I’m coming in with a winning mentality, wanting to defend my title and go on to having even bigger fights in the future. Don’t rule out this being a wonderful fight and a wonderful show. But what is also really important is that we both come out of this ring safe and sound.

Jesse Rodriguez 

Like Robert [Garcia] says, I will take on any fighter. If they drop your name, I will say yes right away. If it’s any other fight that’s not challenging then I’m not interested. From here on now, it’s big fight after big fight. That’s what I’m here for to give the fans the fights they want to see. They want entertaining fights and firework fights. You know that’s what I’m all about and that’s what I’m here to do. I was probably about 13 or 14 when I first heard about Estrada. I was watching his fight against Chocolatito [Roman Gonzalez] and [Carols] Cuadras. So to share the ring with him is an honor. But come June 29, all of that goes out the window. When it’s just me and him in the ring, I’m going to take what he has. I’m a different breed and I’m a different animal. Come June 29 the whole is going to see that. I’ve proved people wrong, time after time. I’m just here to prove people wrong and come June 29 expect fireworks.

People didn’t think I could stop Sunny [Edwards]. I’m pretty sure they don’t expect me to stop Estrada. But I believe in myself that I can do it and my team believes it. It’s a very hard task to do but it is possible because nothing is impossible. So, come June 29 I feel like I am going to shock the world. Like Robert said, we’re not looking past Estrada. But we do have future plans and bigger plans than this. I’m already No.9 on the top pound-for-pound list. I feel like winning this will just put me even higher. I’d be able to hold the WBC for a second time and the Ring Magazine belt for the first time. Not a lot of fighters can say that title before, so that in itself is a blessing. The sky’s the limit, Eddie. Give me a name and I’m in there right away.

Robert Garcia

I know when my fighters are ready to step it up to the next level. When I started mentioning Arturo Cardenes to Kevin Rooney and yourself [Eddie Hearn] it took you a while but you guys finally put him on one of your cards. It looks like you guys are happy with his performances and this kid was from Mexico’s National team when I brought him in. Since day one, on his pro debut. I knew this kid could be something special. And with Matchroom, DAZN and yourself, I think after this fight – without disrespecting Barrios – then we are ready to step it up. I know it’s going to be a difficult fight but we’re excited to be here and he can fight in front of a big crowd as he has done before. It looks like Phoenix, Arizona is becoming our second home. The big fights are happening here and my fighters are fighting here. We’re here often and I can’t wait for June 29 for Arturo and, obviously, for Bam.

I was a little worried that after a little while that I didn’t know what he was going to want. But we know that Estrada is a tough opponent and a great champion. I would probably say, and I don’t think I’m mistaken, that this guy [Estrada] is the most talented Mexican right now when it comes to talent. He is a great. We’re honored and happy to be sharing the ring with him.

You know, I think I have the best Super-Flyweight in the division and we’re going to show it on the day. We knew June 29 would be the day that we would be fighting, so I told Bam that we were working on Estrada and hopefully we could get him – if not, hopefully we could fight someone else. But immediately he said to me that if it’s not against Estrada, he would rather wait a few more months and spend time with my newborn girl and my family, then fight later in the year. But you guys did a great job to finalize the fight and now we’re here. We can’t look past Estrada but there are things we have to look up to in the future. That’s definitely coming. I don’t know how long before we step up and do it. Me personally, I haven’t even brought it up to Jesse but I’d love to see him unify maybe then go after undisputed at 115. But that’s obviuously going to be a decision made by the team and, of course, Jesse is the main one who makes that final decision. I think undisputed at 115 would be my goal but if it’s going to 118 we can do that too because I know Jesse’s ready and he can compete against any of the other champions.

Juan Hernandez

Thank you, Eddie, and to all your team at Matchroom. You’re the best in the business. You, Shaun [Palmer], Kevin [Rooney] and everybody has been great. We also want to say thank you to our partners in Mexico who have been a key elemnet in Estrada’s career. It’s actually very interesting to hear Bam’s team so motivated and maybe, in my opinion, looking ahead past Estrada.

I wanted to congratulate Bam first of all on becoming a father. We noticed on social media that he has a newborn. Estrada also has a couple of kids who are toddlers and motivating him. We were having a light-hearted conversation the other day about how they’re both new fathers. Estrada made a funny comment and said that Bam might be a little over-hyped because he’s being spoon-fed his leftovers. He said look at his record: Cuadras, Rungvisai, others. We’ve compared records and Estrada has the who’s who of elite Super-Flys including the likes of [Milan] Melindo, [Hernan] Marquez, and many more. Anybody, he’s gone through everybody. It’s good to hear that Bam is very confident. It will make for a great fight. Robert [Garcia] was saying he’s not sure what Bam will want to do after this fight. But I think maybe he’ll want to come back down to 112 if he can’t handle this. But we’ll see.

It will be a great fight. No discrediting anyone but I feel like Estrada deserves all the credit in the world for his legendary career. Again, Eddie, you guys have really helped him cement his legacy with two fights with Chocolatito, one in Texas and one here [in Arizona]. I think we’re in for a real treat. Gallo has never been in a boring fight. He’s an artist inside the ring. As Eddie said, it’s a huge weekend for Phoenix. We plan on celebrating the win by watching the Mexican soccer game here live. We’ve already made plans about that. We’ll see how everything goes and come fight night we’ll see if Bam is still wearing diapers or if he is potty trained. It will be a great fight, so thank you everybody.

Ramla Ali

I hope the fight happens! Like you said, we’re still in final negotiations. I opted to take the hard route and fight here in Arizona, which let’s be honest is practically like fighting in Mexico given the support here. There will be thousands of Mexican fans and I’m challenging a Mexican for her belts. I know it’s not going to be easy but as boxers and athletes, you always want to try and challenge yourself by trying to do the best that you can. And that’s going out there and fighting the best in the hardest situations. That way when you are victorious it’s all the more sweeter. Even though I know I’m ranked higher in the IBF and WBA rankings, I’ve wanted the WBC belt. I’ve wanted it since I was a kid watching the greats of the sport like Sugar Ray and Muhammad Ali wearing the belt around their waist. As a kid, you look up to that and you are like, “Wow, that’s going to be one day”. So I’ve always wanted the WBC belt and I’ve never shied away from saying so. It will be quite fun. I would say it is quite a tasty division. I’m really looking forward to June 29 and getting through that first before seeing where it takes me after that.

Arturo Cardenas

First of all, I want to thank you, Eddie Hearn and Matchroom for this third opportunity to fight on Matchroom. I’m really happy and I’m not going to disappoint. It’s wonderful to be here, fighting on such a huge card also fighting alongside my good friend Bam Rogriguez. I’m ready to show what I’m made of and hopefully I will go on to fight for a world title. It’s really emotional to be on great cards such as this with Estrada and Bam Rogriguez. It was something I wanted to do when I was a kid. I feel completely ready to go on and do what we can do. I know that whatever comes, we are facing a really tough opponent and I’ll be ready for whatever comes.

Danny Barrios

What can I say, man? It feels so good to be up here. I just want to thank God for this opportunity, Matchroom, Eddie [Hearn], Kevin [Rooney] for making this fight happen and my manager. I can’t wait. I can’t wait to show the world who I am and go to work. I’m going to be a problem. I know I’m here to give the world a show on who I really am and I’m ready to step up to whoever. I know Popoca is a great fighter and I respect him. But I come here to fight and do my job – and that’s what I am going todo on June 29. After Popoca I want the big fights. I want to face whoever is out there. I want them all. I’m ready to eat.