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Biofile: Diego Corrales Interview

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By Scoop Malinowski

Status: Former IBF Super Featherweight champion. Battles Joel Casamayor this Saturday at Las Vegas in a much-anticipated showdown on the Toney vs. Holyfield undercard (to be televised by Showtime Pay-Per-View).

Ht: 6-0 Wt: 130

Born On: August 25, 1977 In: Columbia, S.C.

Childhood Hero: “Honestly – my stepfather (Ray Woods).”

Hobbies/Interests: “I’ve always been a sports person. Always sports, every sport – tennis I like, football, basketball, baseball, soccer, just any sport.”

Nickname: “Chico.”

Favorite Movies: “Golly, you know what. I love all the gangster movies you can think of.”

Favorite TV Shows: “Don’t watch TV that much. My life is basically a TV show so!”

Musical Tastes: “R&B, I love slow grooves!”

Early Boxing Memory: “My first Nationals I went to. I went to Newark, N.J. with a guy who was director of P.A.L. in Sacramento, a guy who was a police officer, now works for the F.B.I. He took good care of me, I just had a ball with him. I was a silver medalist (at 95 lbs.). I won five fights. I think I fought every day. Lost a decision in the final. But I got a trophy – they gave it to me for the Sportsman of the Tournament. So my first Nationals I got two trophies.”

First Job: “Line cook at Bennigans in Amarillo, Texas (age 17).”

First Car: “Red Ford Ranger.”

Favorite Meal: “About everything my wife (Michelle) cooks.”

Favorite Breakfast Cereal: “Lucky Charms!”

Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: “Strawberry. I’m a strawberry fan.”

Pre-Fight Meal: “Day of fight, it varies…pastas, fruit. I love fruit, eat a lot of fruit day of fight. Salad. Try and keep it light and simple.”

Pre-Fight Feeling: “A little anxiety, that’s about it. (Do you look at your opponent upon entering the ring?) Absolutely. Basically sending a message…You’re not taking anything from me, livelihood, future.”

Greatest Sports Moment: “Golly…making teams. Making U.S. National team in 1993. I beat Frank Carmona, Kenny Friday to make the team. I beat all the top 10 guys that year.”

Most Painful Moment: “My first loss (to Floyd Mayweather). (What did you learn?) Be mentally prepared for anything. Try to keep outside circumstances from affecting your fight.”

Worst Injury: “Torn extensor tendon in my (right) hand. Against John Brown. My very first defense. It was already hurt. But it never got a chance to heal. My first defense was so quick. It tore completely off the bone. I was inactive for four months after.”

Favorite Boxers To Watch: “My favorite boxers…the person I’m fighting, I’ll say. That’s the people I watch all the time. Every day. Constantly. Constantly. You gotta keep your mind on that person.”

Favorite Fights: “Golly, gosh. Mugabi-Hagler – one of my all-time favorites. The Beast and Hagler just went at it. Mugabi was huge, strong. They went to war. Hard shots everywhere. No one gave any ground.”

Favorite Vacation Spot: “I have to say Hawaii is awesome.”

Childhood Dream: “I’m living my childhood dream right now. I always wanted to be an athlete –
football or boxing. I’m actually living my childhood dream.”

People Qualities Most Admired: “Sense of humor. I love to see a lot of laughs. My dad had an awesome sense of humor. He was just a nut. That’s probably why I like sense of humor so much.”
Funny Boxing Memory: “I was a kid, 11 or 12. I was fighting a kid in Herford, Louisiana. I was fighting a kid who did karate. We were fighting really hard. I was beating his butt pretty good. All the sudden, he jumped in the air and did a karate kick on me. Right on my side. It was amazing. Kicked the crap out of me. My parents were videotaping it. It’s the craziest moment.”

 

(Note: This interview is from the archives of Scoop Malinowski.)

About Scoop Malinowski

Author of six books including "Muhammad Ali: Portrait of a Champion" and "Heavyweight Armageddon: The Lewis versus Tyson Championship Battle" available at amazon