Carlos Quintana Talks About His Career, Keith Thurman, and Canelo Alvarez


    “Money doesn’t matter to me.  I just want to regain that title and leave my mark on the sport.  Right now, I’m ready for anything.  I am motivated, I feel strong and I want leave this sport as a champion.”

    We caught up with a re-energized Carlos Quintana while he holds camp in Puerto Rico.  The former welterweight champion looks forward to his next fight against a rising star in Keith Thurman on November 24th in Ontario, California.  He has high hopes that a victory will put him back on track to fight for the title once more.  Here’s what a hungry and motivated Quintana had to say:



    Carlos, How have you felt, physically and mentally, since your return against Deandre Latimore earlier this year? Do you feel like your years have caught up to you?


    Physically, I feel great.  I’ve been keeping up with my training so I feel very good.  My years have not caught up to me at all.  In the past, I may have been a bit careless with my training and that may have had an effect on me but it’s different this around.  I’ve stayed in shape and in the gym. 


    You have taken some long layoffs between fights as of late.  Why is that?


    My inactivity was due to waiting for the right fight from my promoter.  I fought in 2011 but then had a layoff that lasted more than a year.  I think that affected me a bit.  But nevertheless, I feel ready for this upcoming fight as I haven’t taken a break from training.  In the past, fighting at 147 after some time off was tough and it was at that weight where I had my three losses but I feel a lot better at this weight and that has helped a great deal with the preparation.


    Your next opponent, Keith Thurman, is relatively green and has only been contested in 18 bouts.  He is, nevertheless, undefeated and has won most of those fights by knockout.  What are you doing differently to prepare yourself for this fight?


    I have been training very hard for some time now and really staying in shape.  But Thurman is young and strong.  He’s only 23 years old.  And I know that he fights very hard so I’m preparing myself well because I really want to have a good showing as I approach the end of my career.  It’ll be a 10 round match and we’re looking for the victory however it comes.  I’m ready for anything.  I feel strong.  I’m hitting hard.  But we’re going to take it round by round because he’s a young guy and although he doesn’t have a lot of experience he boxes very well.  So we have to be ready for anything. 


    You won the welterweight title against Paul Williams in 2008, only to lose it in the rematch just 4 months later.  You then had an opportunity to regain a belt against Andre Berto two years later but were unable to do so. Your only other loss came against a then undefeated Miguel Cotto.  How do you respond to those that say that boxing is all about tough luck and clever matchmaking?


    It definitely has an impact on things.  While training for the world title fight against Miguel Cotto, I suffered an injury and it really affected my training but I kept pushing through it hoping that I could still win the fight, despite the injury.  But Cotto is a tremendous fighter.  A great and very dedicated boxer and he simply beat me. 


    After that fight, I was very motivated and got the opportunity to face Paul Williams in a fight which I won but then the negotiation for the rematch was tough.  And that affects you mentally.  I was prepared to face Williams the second time around but not for the money that I was being offered at the time.   And I also had issues with a few other things in the contract.  Overall, I wasn’t very pleased with the deal but we went through with it anyway.  Physically, I prepared myself for the rematch even better than how I prepared for the first against Williams but I just wasn’t there mentally.  I think that was the main reason for the loss.  And as you know, in this sport, you can’t commit errors and when he knocked me down I just wasn’t able to recover.

    By the time I faced Berto, I just couldn’t make 147.  I made the weight but I just didn’t have it in me that night.  I went into it very weak and I just couldn’t compete. But it was good money and that’s when the business side comes into play, unfortunately.


    But now, I feel very strong in this weight division.  The fight will be contested at 152.  We wanted the fight at 154 but they insisted on a catch weight.  I wanted to stay active so I took it at 152


    We all know the role that your promoter plays in landing these fights.  Assuming you win on November the 24th, what would you like to see after the Thurman fight?


    Honestly, I have very few fights left. I want to win this next bout and then I want to fight for the title again at 154, or even 160.  I would like a fight against Canelo Alvarez or any other champion.  And I would love to win that title again at this weight.  At 147, I always felt weak.  Even though I got to win the title, it was never my weight.  Once I regain the title, then I’ll retire.  Money doesn’t matter.  I just want to win and leave my mark.  Of course you look back and think you could have done more but I would love to win a world title once more and leave the sport as a champion.

    And in order to do that, I’ll fight anyone.  If Cotto wins in December, I would love a rematch.  But anyone really, I really wanted that fight against Canelo on 9/15 but he and the networks accepted the fight with Josesito instead.  Lopez is good boxer but he was a small one for Canelo.  That’s the way it worked out, though.


    Why do you think you’re not being considered for these big fights?

    Boxing has become more of a business.  Fighters are more protected.  Their records are more protected.  People want to maintain undefeated records but back in the day, in the 70s and 80s, fighters fought anyone.  It didn’t matter the number of losses that a fighter had.  If a fighter fought well and fought hard, he remained relevant.  But now, if you suffer a loss, it affects the business side of things.  I’ve never avoided anyone.  I’ll fight anyone.


    Finally, what do you want to say to your fans that visit and listen to our radio show?


    I want to say thank you so much for supporting me and for being my fans.  Be sure to tune in on November the 24th.  It will be one of my last fights but I will be prepared physically and I’m going to look good.  I assure you that I will have a good showing that day.