John Bray Interview on Macka Foley, Mike Tyson, Wladimir Klitschko, Ronda Rousey and more
John Bray Interview on Macka Foley, Mike Tyson, Wladimir Klitschko, Ronda Rousey and more Interview conducted by "Big Dog" Benny Henderson Jr., Doghouse Boxing (Aug 7, 2015) TweetFollow @DoghouseBoxing
Former decorated amateur star turned world class trainer, John Bray has pretty much seen and done all in the boxing world. From taking young prospects under his wing, teaching the young men and women the “sweet science”, honing their skills developing them into world champions. He knows the ins and outs of the bang for your buck sport. In this exclusive interview we catch up with the HOF trainer, and get his thoughts on various people and topics in and around the fight world, enjoy.
Benny Henderson Jr.
The boxing world just recently lost the always colorful Macka Foley, your thoughts on such a great loss.
John Bray It is horrible man. I will tell you a funny story. I was trying to fight and make a comeback. I was always at Freddie Roach’s gym working out or just laying around or sitting around doing nothing. Macka would always look at me like he was aggravated. One day he showed up and came up to me as I was lying around on the mats. He said, why don’t you get your ass up, I am tired of coming in here and seeing you not do sh*t. You know, as much boxing knowledge as you have, all you have to do is hold those mitts and you’ll never have to work another day in your life. You’ll be a great trainer. I took it all in.
So the reason why there is a John Bray the trainer is because of Macka Foley?
Oh absolutely. Before that I never thought about it.
Your undefeated heavyweight Dominic Breazeale has been coming along great, your thoughts on his progression.
JB He is still progressing, he has lots to learn, we are in the gym everyday now. I do not think he was happy with his last performance and neither was I. We both know he can do better. He is working hard in the gym, sparring hard, and getting better.
I have to ask this, Shannon Briggs who has been around the boxing world forever now, he is still trying to be in the mix of the top of the crop in the heavyweight division. Your thoughts on Shannon still doing his thing in the ring.
JB I fought Shannon Briggs in the 1991 Olympic Sports Festival.
And how did that turn out?
I won of course, come on Benny. (We both laugh)
I am going to tell you something, you want to talk about a war, two heavyweights going at it throwing bombs. I had to fight the next night in the finals; Shannon took everything out of me man. Shannon Briggs, a very good fighter. I talk to him from time to time. Let me tell you something, Shannon Briggs is a dangerous fight. You never lose your punch, and he has one. They do not call him Shannon “The Cannon” for nothing. He has the experience and power.
Your thoughts on Wladimir Klitschko versus Tyson Fury.
JB You know what, Fury is going to be another victim for Klitschko. Klitschko has proven to be a great fighter. People want to call him boring and this and that. I mean how many years has he gone now?
There has been a lot of talk about UFC lady’s champ Ronda Rousey.
JB Let me tell you something funny, I used to work with her coach. They have done a great job with her. She is an MMA fighter. I will tell you this about her; she is the most humble nice lady you’ll ever be around. What you see on TV is not her.
If you could give advice to a young fighter stepping in to the pros. With all of your experience as a fighter/trainer. What advice would that be?
It is real simple; you have to make boxing a lifestyle. You have to make sacrifices, everything you eat; everything you do has to be geared towards being a fighter. What you put into it, is what you’ll get out of it. Know that. If you cannot do that, then get a job somewhere else. Because you’ll only be hurting yourself.
You know, I said that was the last question, but, I have to ask this, and I do this to mess with you, because you are an extremely humble guy. But, didn’t you knock out Mike Tyson once during sparring?
I don’t remember. (We both Laugh) Let me tell you what, Mike is a great guy, here is a guy who reinvented himself. He does a wonderful job, just God bless him.