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Exclusive Interview: Jose “The Punisher’ Perez Jr.

thumb josepressimage Exclusive Interview: Jose “The Punisher’ Perez Jr.
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© Jesus Sanchez

Some fighters come out of the amateur ranks with a "silver spoon" in hand, especially if those fighters were part of the Olympic experience. These "Blue Chip" prospects usually receive rewards such as the big contracts and immediate exposure to the "mainstream" of boxing. Then, there are those who had great amateur careers, and won several national titles, but still seem to fly under the boxing radar waiting for that one big moment to shine.

This is the case with Jose “The Punisher’ Perez, Jr. After compiling an awesome amateur record of 147-20, and wining five national titles, one would think that Perez would have come out of the unpaid ranks with, if nothing else, a decent contract and a powerful promotional machine behind him. Well, that just did not happen. "No one is really looking at me. We have been sending tapes to people, but no one has really gotten back to us. It might be because my father, who is my manager, is really looking out for my best interest, so that’s why we haven’t signed. We’re not asking for too much or being unreasonable," said Jose “The Punisher’ Perez, Jr. (6-0-0 with 4 KOs), from his home base in Freemont, California. “Diamond’ Ed Deveikis, who is part of Team Perez, added, "A lot of people are interested. Guys like Manny Steward have given great feedback. There is a lot of feedback from promoters, but no one has put anything down in writing or made a formal agreement. I don’t know why no one is signing him. I think it is because of him not going to the Olympics. They maybe think he was not good enough to make it, but his decision losses were by one point, and those decisions were iffy."

Read more about this young prospect looking to make his way into the professional ranks, brought to you only by SaddoBoxing.com

Perez, a twenty-one year old southpaw and super featherweight prospect, is preparing for his next fight, which is scheduled to take place on May 13, 2005, at the San Jose Civic Center, in San Jose, California. His opponent is still unknown, but “The Punisher’ states: "It doesn’t really bother me who I’m fighting because, just like in the amateurs, you never really knew who you were fighting, so you just go ready for anyone. I’ve been sparring with all kinds of guys. I’m ready for anyone."

What began as a concerned father teaching his son how to fight for self-defense purposes, ended up turning into something special. "When I was like eight-years-old, my father wanted me to learn to defend myself, so he put me in the amateurs. We were just going to have ten fights, and that was going to be it, but I just started getting better and better every fight. Like my second fight, I even stopped the guy, so we just kept on going and I ended up doing real good."

And although there were several amateur fighters in the Perez family, including his father, Jose is the first of the family to go to the professional ranks. “The Punisher’ recalls the experience of his first professional fight, and describes it as, "I was a little nervous you know. I didn’t know what it was going to feel like to get hit without the headgear since I had never done that before. Once I got in there, I was so juiced, and the feeling was a lot better than the amateurs ever was. Without the headgear, you could see everything. It felt like the amateurs were like playing. This felt like the real thing. Like you were actually in a real fight. I got hit and, it was like, it didn’t hurt me. I guess I was like so juiced that I almost felt like smiling at the guy because I was like, “oh man, I’m going to kick this guys ass.’ A lot of people say that you have to find out if you are going to fold when you get hit with an eight ounce glove, and I didn’t." It is an experience most of us will never know, or just don’t want to know.

In closing, Perez had this to say: "I’m ready and I can do it." “Diamond’ added, "watch the tapes, and answer our calls (Perez laughs in the background). He is a total proven warrior and he loves the sport. All he does is boxing all day and all night. He doesn’t do much talking, he just likes to get into the ring and show people. Other fighters want to come out and boast and brag. I’ve known Jose for a while now and he’s not about that. Let’s show everyone what he has. He’s a great kid."

He does sound like a great kid and definitely has the amateur credentials to be considered a prospect in the toughest of sports. A southpaw, a good-looking kid, with an amateur record of 147-20, and with five, count them, five national amateur titles. Does anyone understand why one of the big promotional companies have not offered him a contract yet? If you do, please explain it to me, because I don’t.

You can learn more about Jose Perez Jr. at his official website www.josethepunisherperezjr.com

Sergio Martinez can be reached at srg_mrtnz@yahoo.com

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