Your stated goal is to unify the titles. From where things stand today, are you optimistic you will get that chance?
I don't want to talk about unifications before my fight on Saturday night.
At a German press conference for this fight, both you and your trainer Emanuel Steward predicted an early knockout. Why do you feel that way?
I never in my whole career predicted an early knockout. But I would love to win convincingly in every fight.
Ray Austin at 6'-6, is the first fighter you have faced in many years who is as big as you. Will that present any problems?
I have fought many fights as an amateur and as a professional against tall opponents (e.g. Jameel McCline).I'm well prepared for this fight.
You were hoping for a fight with one of the title holders. How do you avoid looking past Austin to a reunification fight?
Austin is my mandatory challenger. I know that he is a dangerous opponent. I won't underestimate him.
Have you done anything different in training camp in your preparation for this fight?
The camp went very well. I have been in my camp for the last 6 weeks on Majorca/Spain
Why do you like training in Spain?
The most important: the weather is great. The hotel and the gym are excellent.
Tell us how your relationship with Steward has changed since he first became your trainer in 2003.
Manny and myself are very close. Every training camp is very special. I have the feeling that through Manny's input I improve myself from camp to camp.
You will be 31 this month, just entering the prime age for a heavyweight. Do you sense you are at the top of your game, or is there more room for improvement.
There should always be room for improvement. If you ever think you know everything that's the first step towards defeat.
Do you have a time table for what you want to accomplish before you retire?
I would love to unify the titles - but more important is to become the "People's Champion".
When you do retire, how would you like to be remembered by boxing fans?
At the moment I don't think about retirement.
You are a highly-educated boxer. If you had chosen to pursue a career other than in boxing, what would it have been?
I'm still young and I let you know after my last fight what career I will pursue after boxing.
HBO WCB - Mar. 10, 2007
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