Several weeks ago, California-based trainer Joel Diaz was a guest on Thaboxingvoice’s twice weekly radio show and he spoke candidly with us about his split with Timothy Bradley Jr. After 10 years together, Bradley decided to cut ties with Diaz and opted to train alongside the sparsely used Teddy Atlas.
Diaz was brutally honest about his feelings on the issues with Bradley and the fact that he believes the fighter’s wife, Monica Bradley, was the reason for the separation between trainer and fighter.
On that same show, Diaz spoke about working with his other fighters, and he admitted that he was excited to have more time to dedicate to his vast stable which includes such names as Omar Figueroa Jr., Diego De La Hoya and Felix Diaz, to name a few. In fact, Felix, who is of no relation to Joel, is currently preparing for a major opportunity against Lamont Peterson on a “PBC” card October 17th at the Eagle Bank Arena in Fairfax, Virginia.
However, Diaz also hinted about working with a new fighter and told TBV that he would not announce the new partnership until said fighter’s manager announced his next fight and it was made official. All he would say is that the new fighter was a “full action fighter.”
Thaboxingvoice has learned that the action fighter is Ruslan Provodnikov.
The two have been working together for almost a month, and they are continuing to build a rapport with one another heading into Ruslan’s next fight, which was supposed to take place in October, although nothing official has been announced. Still, Ruslan is on target to get one more fight before the year is up.
Shane Mosley was on that same show with Diaz and he announced that Provodnikov was a potential opponent for a December date.
Diaz confirmed the addition of Ruslan to his stable through a text conversation with Thaboxingvoice’s Fernando Pimentel. TBV attempted to get more information regarding the Diaz-Provodnikov partnership, but Diaz is currently in England with another one of his fighters, Diego Magdaleno (28-1, 12 KOs), as he prepares for a mandatory title shot against WBO lightweight champion Terry Flanagan (28-0, 11 KOs). The bout will headline a card in Manchester, England where Flanagan is from.
There is an interesting dynamic within the newly formed Diaz-Provodnikov partnership. After all, Provodnikov was the fighter that took Bradley to his limits in March of 2013 in a fight that ended up being a classic. The fight was supposed to be an easy bounce-back-fight for Bradley, but Provodnikov surprised the boxing world as he thoroughly tested Bradley in the fight, sending him down to the canvas in the 12th. However, Bradley was able to win the unanimous decision by proving his perseverance knows no bounds.
Provodnikov became a major player within the boxing ranks and the fight with Bradley propelled him to those heights.
It will be interesting to see how well Diaz and Provodnikov work together, but it would be an even more fascinating storyline if Provodnikov, with Diaz in his corner, were to ever land a rematch with Bradley.