"See, the truth comes out and here is the thing that people really don't understand. I don't mark my words or hold anything back from anybody. Like with him, he basically needs a babysitter. I'm not a babysitter. Number one, he needs somebody to watch him 24/7 and I ain't into that...I have said this time and time again and that's Ann Wolfe is truly the best person for him. Regardless of what happens on that, she is the best person for him because she is going to watch him day after day and make sure he's where he's supposed to be when he needs to be there. Like I said, I'm a little different trainer than that. I mean, I used to do that years ago, but not anymore. I'm not 24/7 to nobody," stated world-class trainer Kenny Adams, who set the record straight about the brief period of time he worked with jr. middleweight contender James Kirkland. Check it out!
PC: How has everything been going Kenny? It's been awhile since we last spoke.
KA: Everything is going real good, man. Sharif [Bogere] is doing real good. I spent a lot of time with him. I'm dealing with him 1000% and everything is on.
PC: I know you don't like having too many fighters at this point. Who are you working with like that besides Sharif?
KA: I'm really just working with him. I'm working with Sharif and another light heavyweight named Trevor McCumby. That's basically all I'm dealing with right now.
PC: Last time we spoke, you were just released from the hospital with some health issues. How are you physically?
KA: Oh yeah, I'm great. I just had a little cancer in my bladder. They went in there and got it out and a couple of days later, I was catching the mitts, working out no problem.
PC: How is Sharif looking in training and how far into training are you guys right now?
KA: He's getting better and better every time. He's actually getting much stronger and punching much better and we are getting really deep into things. He's catching and throwing power punches. His movement and rhythm is getting a lot better. I found out a few things once we started getting into training. His rhythm wasn't really as good. Considering the guy is from Africa, you would figure he had a lot of rhythm. He didn't even know how to dance, so I went in and taught him a few dance steps and how to get his shoulders moving; a little shoulder rolling and moving his shoulders and hands and all of the combinations that go along with these things. It's just improved and helped him so much more now that we got him in that rhythm. The snap shots off of that power base are there also, and we're working with a different guy now and that worked out real well for us, not that the first one didn't. Ray was good work, but we got Darryl Hudson now and he does things a little different, which is really great. He sees what I do and kind of works towards the same goal, which is explosiveness with the power base and everything. It's a good team work thing and it's working real well.
PC: I gotta ask you about James Kirkland because it seems a lot of people put the blame on you for his shortcomings in the Ishida fight. How did you handle the criticism?
KA: Ah, it's no problem at all to me. See, the truth comes out and here is the thing that people really don't understand. I don't mark my words or hold anything back from anybody. Like with him, he basically needs a babysitter. I'm not a babysitter. Number one, he needs somebody to watch him 24/7 and I ain't into that. I train a guy hard in the gym, I work him hard, and I get him up in the morning and run him. I do the runs that need to be done with him and I have all of my guys there and everything. I was kind of a trustworthy guy in the sense that I get you up in the morning and run you and I take you back and explain to you what you need to eat and what vitamins you need to be taking and things of that nature, but I'm not going to sit there and watch you and keep my eye on you 24/7. Then I take you back to the gym and do our workout. There was no problems with that, and anybody that wants to put that on me, then that's on them because whoever said that or even put a comment out about that, they don't know a muthaphukin thing about boxing to begin with. I've made more world champions than any fucking trainer alive. I've had 18 world champions and worked with about 54 guys. I had a lot of those guys win small titles. A lot of those guys went on to win world titles or were contenders to be world champions. And like I said, I had 18 that I groomed myself, and that includes people that I worked with from the amateurs, Olympic Gold medalists, to 2- and 3-time world champions. So you find me another trainer that's done that and I'm gonna kiss your ass. I don't take a backwards ste, you know what I mean?
PC: I feel you.
KA: But back to the Kirkland deal. Truthfully, when he came here, things were rushed a little bit anyway. We needed more time to get to know each other. You have to know that he was here for 2 weeks; they had him fight after 2 weeks and we stopped the guy in 33 seconds, but it was a guy that was ready-made for him. The next guy was a little tougher, who could punch. I just...personally, I felt we needed the same type of opponent who he came back with, but once again, I trained him for 2 weeks, we made weight, and fought again. The next time, he had to go home to see the judge and he brought his car back when he came. That seemed to be the beginning of the problem. He brought his car and was able to get around too much. He was staying out late I understood. I personally didn't see him, but I know people that did see him and said he was hanging out. I told him about it. I got after him about it and he told me that wasn't the deal; that he went to a movie and got back a little late and things of that nature. I told him, "Man, you need to get right. We're working on a lot of things." Another thing is, you have to understand, well, I think you may know, but I'm a technician. I'm more of a technical type of trainer and being a technical type of trainer, he wanted to just walk in and throw punches. Bang, bang, bang! Basically, that's what Kirkland does. He doesn't deal with the movement and the turning around and turning them outside to box. That's what I was really trying to get him into, but my thing is I don't want fighters who are fighters today and then not be able to talk and they can just mumble in their future life. You understand me?
PC: I follow you.
KA: In order to do that, you have to learn how to have some defense, while at the same time learning boxing. One thing that I did teach him was, he was afraid to throw a hook before, so I did teach him how to throw a hook before. But anyway, back to the schedule. A week later, 3 weeks of him being here, we enter our second fight. The guy he fought could punch a little bit, which really wasn't the right opponent for him. He didn't need to be fighting a guy that can really punch, but he didn't need to be facing a boxer either. He got cracked in that one. He wobbled just a little, but he came back and recovered and stopped that guy. So we go into the next fight against Ishida; a week and a half later we're fighting again. Here is a strong Japanese guy, and you know he had a good chin. He had never been stopped or anything of that nature, but he didn't have a lot of knockouts either. You would think that would have been a good enough opponent, but I guess the guy wanted it more than anybody else. And not only that, during that week, what I gathered was some young lady...and you know what? Hey, you can't lay on your thing and fight too (laughing), especially during the week of the fight. But truthfully, he really wasn't in top top shape yet to be honest. But I'm not the manager or the promoter. They say he's gonna fight, so what am I gonna do? I gotta try to prepare him. That's all I can do. So basically, that's what happened, and people gonna take that the way they want to. I have said this time and time again and that's Ann Wolfe is truly the best person for him. Regardless of what happens on that, she is the best person for him because she is going to watch him day after day and make sure he's where he's supposed to be when he needs to be there. Like I said, I'm a little different trainer than that. I mean, I used to do that years ago, but not anymore. I'm not 24/7 to nobody. They gotta be a man and carry their load too, you know what I'm saying?
PC: You were put in a bad situation because obviously, when he came out of prison, they had him on the fast track and you were given basically a month to prepare him for 3 fights. You had never even met the kid prior to that, so it was a tough spot for both of you guys.
KA: No, I hadn't met him and I didn't know things about him. I have to learn the guy and you don't learn a guy overnight. I been around long enough to know what people are about and I see what they are about, but the way things worked out, I didn't have any hard feelings about it. They can blame who they want to. That's what they always do anyway and it's the trainers fault always. That's the way it goes, but I got big enough shoulders. I can handle mine. I ain't got no problem because I know what I'm about and what I can do and what I have done. So the point is, I don't worry about shit like that no way. It doesn't really matter, you know? It doesn't matter.
[ Follow Percy Crawford on Twitter @MrLouis1ana ]