Trainer Gerald Tucker expects Floyd Mayweather to join Claressa Shields in Cardiff
Coach Tucker discusses training camp at the Mayweather Gym and provides prediction on Claressa Shields vs Ema Kozin clash
Trailblazing Olympian Claressa Shields brings the might of the Floyd Mayweather Gym to Cardiff on Saturday night where she’ll defend her unified crowns against Slovenia’s Ema Kozin, having added Mayweather’s head coach Gerald Tucker to her team in November.
VegasInsider caught up with Tucker, who said that he believes Floyd Mayweather is ‘fired up’ by Claressa Shields ahead of skyscraper showdown against Money Kicks in Dubai.
The former pro boxer-turned-coach revealed a few details from camp, “Yes Floyd offered plenty of great advice to Claressa over the phone and in person once we joined the two camps in Las Vegas, as they trained back to back every night in Las Vegas at the Mayweather Boxing Club.
“I honestly think that it was very motivating for Claressa to train beside Floyd, she’s literally the Floyd of the women’s side of the sport and she wants what he has: A team of employees like his, the money, the accolades, the status, she got to see firsthand what it takes and how it feels to have it, she’s a women on more of a mission now.
“Floyd also was motivated by Claressa’s work. He told me several times while watching her train with me that “that girl can fight”, “she can fight”. And I felt the energy it gave him as we trained right after her gym session and Floyd was fired up tremendously from watching his mentee train with so much passion. Floyd was more than happy to have Claressa in camp with him.
“Floyd mentioned coming to the fight at the gym while Claressa was working on the bag. He asked us if we wanted him there, and of course we said “hell yea”. He’s gonna try his best to come and support Claressa and get some more training while here to prepare for his upcoming fight later this month in Dubai.”
A former fighter himself, with three KOs from seven wins, Gerald Tucker believes he has helped Shields to develop more devastating power under his guidance, “I worked on adding some patience to her game, slowing down her pace to where she can focus more on picking her shots and making the shots she lands more devastating and potentially fight-ending. She had the power needed to get stoppages, but there were a few things that I focused on tweaking in order to get the maximum amount of power landed with punches thrown; and it’s starting to show in the gym.
“I’m excited to say that her head trainer John says she’s punching different now. I’m also OCD when it comes to making the fighter look how I know they want to look performance wise; so a tighter offence and tighter defence is also what we worked on in this camp.
“I speak to the fighter’s subconsciouses about the importance of sacrificing things not needed, and also adding things that are needed like food, drinks, supplements, conditioning habits, sleep, and recovery. I’m sure some of those things have been taken into account and adjusted accordingly.”
“I learned in this camp that Claressa is everything I thought she was but times 10. She’s elite, a very hardworking world champion that will do what’s necessary to remain on top. She’s adamant about cementing her top position in the sport and dreams very big like myself. We both are constantly working towards leaving behind a legacy for the spotter to always remember.”
He concluded with his prediction for fight night, “I’m expecting a beautiful knockout victory over a very tough and durable undefeated fighter in Kozin.”