By William Trillo
With his fight coming up on Thursday, March 23, there was no way I was going to let St. Patrick’s Day slip by without having a chat Irish middleweight contender Jason “El Animal” Quigley (12-0, 10 KOs). On a big ESPN show promoted by Golden Boy Quigley will take on the rugged Glen “Jersey Boy” Tapia (23-3, 15 KOs) in a 10-round main event battle for the vacant NABF middleweight title. This is the perfect platform for Quigley to spring himself into the spotlight. With a win over Tapia the fighter from Ireland could be well on his way to 160 stardom.
That being said, Tapia is no slouch. We spoke to Quigley about this moment and his opponent. As you will read, Quigley is ready for the task at hand.
Pound4Pound: Hey Jason, thanks for speaking with us today. How are you feeling less than a week out from your fight?
Jason Quigley: I’m all good, everything is good, I can’t complain. I have had a great training camp and just finished my session today. After a nap I might go out for a bit, just depends on how I am feeling.
P4P: Ah yes, this is St. Paddy’s day. Tell me…How does a real Irishman celebrate the holiday?
JQ: I can’t celebrate like a real Irishmen now because we are so close to the fight. But…a real Irishman would go out and hit the pubs, have a good drink and a good sing song and maybe a dance later in the night, like that. But for me right now, I must keep it all calm and relaxed and stay focused for my fight. Everything is all about sacrifice now. I got 4 full days until the weigh-in so I will be keeping an eye on everything that I am eating and putting into my body. Right now it’s all about staying 100% focused for fight night. That’s what it is all about. I can’t wait and I am looking forward to it.
P4P: This is a pretty special night you are fighting on as Golden Boy makes it’s return to ESPN. It must have come as a big honor to be chosen for the Main Event on this breakout televised c ard.
JQ: It’s a great opportunity for me. I am very blessed. It’s a privilege for me to be chosen to be the main event. Golden Boy put their faith and trust in me to put me on their show. It’s my responsibility to shine now. ESPN and boxing fans will be looking at this show to see what kind of young talent and prospects Golden Boy has. That is exactly what I plan on doing on March 23rd. I plan on getting out there and putting on a show and shining in front of those bright lights.
P4P: You are 12-0 now with 10 knockouts and you are rightly given this chance to show what you are made of. Regarding the timing of this fight, did it feel like a long time coming or does it seem to have come pretty quickly?
JQ: The timing is perfect. Everything seems to be falling into place nicely coming into this fight. I have had two big steps up in competition in my last two fights and I overcame them comfortably. I plan on doing the same on fight night. This is another step up for me against an opponent with a good record. I am sure he is going to come out there 110% and I am expecting the very best Glen Tapia come fight night. So, for me, I am looking for the best he has got. I have prepared well and I am going to give him one helluva fight. For that matter I know I am going to give any man in the middleweight division one helluva a night when we meet because I am always fully prepared, like I will be against Tapia.
P4P: You are considered to be the favorite here and on paper most experts agree Tapia is in too deep with a fighter of your skills. But, to me Tapia is like that injured bear in the forest right now and he is desperate, and that makes him very dangerous. The reason he is fighting in desperation is he has had a couple stumbles and now he needs a victory to stay relevant, no matter the cost. Is that how you see Tapia?
JQ: Yes, he has had a few stumbles. But…You have to look at who he stumbled against. These were top of the class fighters he had those stumbles against. People are not looking at me as a top class fighter yet because I haven’t had those kind of opponents, but those are the kind of fights I am looking to get now. I know Glen Tapia is going to be ready and I am looking to up against the best Tapia can give me. But I know it doesn’t matter how good he is that night, I am ready and I am going to shine come fight night. I am not going to let him get in the way of the dreams and goals I have set for myself.
P4P: So, with a big victory here you are sure to get a jumpstart into the spotlight. Have you had time to think about that and put it into perspective?
JQ: With me, what you see is what you get. I am a straight shooter. There is no BS with me. I get in there and I do what I gotta do. This is my career, this is what pays the bills for me, it can give me a good life. Coming from a small town like Donegal in Ireland I plan on making a great life for myself and my family. There is going to be no man out there who comes those ropes who can stop me. I never look over any opponent. People are asking me what’s next after Tapia but I do not think about what is after Tapia. He is my only focus right now. I do not care about what is after. I need to get over Tapia and I need to eliminate him and then we can talk about the future and what is next.
P4P: Great answer Jason. Before we wrap it up I got some good news for you. I don’t know if you know it or not but the day you fight is National Tamale Day. Now I know you can’t enjoy St. Patrick’s Day like you normally would but don’t fret. I am going to be bringing some of my World Famous Trillo Home Made Tamales to the fight for you and after the fight I will make sure you get them delivered to your locker room so you can enjoy that holiday. How does that sound?
JQ: That sounds Amazing! After my win, I am going to sit down with that victory and my belt and those Tamales and I am going to enjoy them all so much. Thank you.
Never let it be said that I am not looking out for these fighter’s best interest!
Quigley vs. Tapia is a 10-round battle for the vacant NABF Middleweight title presented by Golden Boy Promotions. The event is sponsored by Tecate “Born BOLD.” Doors open at 4:00 p.m. PT and the first fight begins at 4:00 p.m. PT. The ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes transmission begins live from Fantasy Springs Resort Casino at 10:00 p.m. ET/7:00 p.m. PT. The ESPN3 and WatchESPN App livestream of event will begin at approximately 5:30 p.m. PT through 7:00 p.m. PT.
Tickets priced starting at $25 are available for purchase at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino box office, by calling 1-800-827-2946, or by purchasing online at www.FantasySprings.com.
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