Tito ready for the Wright opportunity to get to Hopkins
By Ric Solivan (April 15, 2005) 
Photo © Marty Rosengarten HoganPhotos.com
A calm and optimistic Felix 'Tito' Trinidad fielded question after question during Wednesday’s media conference call in support of his upcoming WBC eliminator bout against Ronald ‘Winky’ Wright, 48-3-0 (25). The former three division champion of the world reiterated that he his not taking the undisputed junior middleweight champion lightly in any way shape or form, but that come May 14th the world will again see just why Felix Trinidad, 42-1-0 (35), is and has been one of the biggest stars in boxing in recent times.

"I do not want to take anything away from ‘Winky’, just like I have never done it with other fighter I have faced, but nothing about him worries me,” said the 32-year-old Trinidad. “When I go into the ring I am in excellent shape and I am ready for anything he may bring, nothing worries me, absolutely... nothing".

"I believe that in his heart, Winky knows that he is going to have the fight of his life against me.” 

Don Felix Trinidad also answered questions, primarily regarding the comments that Winky Wright's trainer Dan Birmingham made about dissecting Tito's close win over Oscar De La Hoya and his loss to Bernard Hopkins "We have studied Winky in the same vein as they say that they have studied Tito’s fights" commented Felix Trinidad's father, manager and trainer.

"We did not base our camp around the weaknesses that we have identified in Winky, but rather we have worked with Tito's potential in mind, just like we always have for past fights", he continued. "We worked with the technique, the attack initiative, essentially Tito as a whole." 

The elder Trinidad also reiterated that the difference in quality of opposition will make a world of difference in favor of son. "Tito has been in there with the best of his era and that makes a big difference. Winky has faced good fighters but not at the level of Tito's opponents. Tito is going to win because he is superior to Winky, not because of anything else".

When asked to rate Wright amongst Tito's other southpaw rivals Don Felix was frank and just in his response. "Winky Wright is not the same as the other southpaws whom Tito has faced. He has good technique, and does stop to fight," he explained. “Tito is undefeated (6-0) against southpaws and this one (Wright) is not going to be the exception,” reiterated Don Felix.

Tito also fielded questions about the southpaw style of his opponent, and not surprisingly Trinidad gave Winky the respect that a fellow veteran should afford his peer when he said "Winky is in that same league as De La Hoya, Hopkins and Whittaker, why else would he be undisputed champion?”

Tito was also asked about his return to the ring against tough as nails Nicaraguan Ricardo Mayorga last October in Madison Square Garden. "I came in there to knock him out and I was the first guy to do it, no one has beaten him like I did, I knocked him out".

Asked about Wright's victories over Shane Mosley, he added, "The second fight was closer than the first, but Winky pulled it off at the end." Teased by a reported as to what he would do if Wright dropped his guard like he did against Mosley, Cupey Alto's prodigal son answered "If he drops his hands, I will take complete advantage... I'm going to hit him harder than he has ever been hit in his life."

When the question of how many rounds the fight would go came up, Trinidad immediately answered back "I prepare to go twelve rounds, just in case I can't knock my opponent out, I'm always ready to go the distance."

Trinidad candidly admitted that the fans were the reason why he came back and keeps going into big fights. "The chants of Tito, Tito, Tito, that is part of what drives me." At the same time Tito dismissed the notion that the crowd factor will play against his opponent. "Winky is a guy who has fought around the world against hometown names, he wont be fazed by the crowd... he will be fazed by me!”

Last but not least contract details were made public by both parties, Don Felix announced that it will be their call as to what brand and color of gloves will be used and on the Team Wright end, Winky confirmed that a rematch clause has been put into his contract should he upset Trinidad.

Last but not least Trinidad is hopeful that a Hopkins rematch will materialize if he is victorious May 14th, although he expressed some concerns over the negotiation tactics employed by his rival, even going as far as to say he is prepared to go on independently of whether Hopkins fights again him or not.

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