THE GHOST FILES: Pace of camp picking up


Guerrero vs. Maidana one month away
Robert Guerrero said his head hits the pillow by 9:30 every night, in part because of a strenuous five-to-six-hours worth of running, muscle training and sparring earlier in the day.

The other part – he knows a rude awakening at 5 a.m. is a daunting inevitability.

“My dad breaks the door down, knocking all hard,” Guerrero joked Wednesday from Big Bear Lake where he is continuing a six-week training stay in preparation for the Aug. 27 WBA interim super lightweight world title bout with Marcos “El Chino” Maidana at HP Pavilion.

“When you’re training hard and putting in all the work, you want to get every second, every minute of sleep,” Guerrero continued. “But my dad is waking me up. If he’s not knocking on my door, I’ll sleep until he wakes me up.”

All jokes aside, the unceremonious wake-up call is a moot point, though, with what is at stake come the 27th.

In addition to the task of getting past Maidana and his 30-2 record, including 28 KOs, Amir Khan’s fifth-round knockout of Zab Judah in defense of WBA super lightweight world title and capturing of the IBF world light welterweight crown as a result last Saturday, adds more incentive. The repercussions one way or the other are astronomical, causing The Ghost, braced for an all-out battle with Maidana, to coin the fight World War III.

“That’s what it’s going to be. It’s going to be a war,” Guerrero (29-1-1, 18 K0s) said. “He’s been in Puerto Rico at training camp for a while already, preparing for me. Just knowing that he is stepping it up to fight me more than he did against Khan, Erik Morales, Victor Ortiz, I think this is going to be one of his longer training camps.

“He took it to that next level and went out to Puerto Rico to focus and prepare just for me, getting with left-handed sparring against fast guys. When a guy is preparing like that, you know it’s going to be a war.”

The Ghost is adamant, and actually isn’t commenting much, about what might happen after Maidana, but for clarity’s sake, a win by Guerrero Aug. 27 would have him in line for a possible unification title shot with Khan, though a number of other variables must be sifted through first.

Judging by his tone, all that matters right now is Maidana and Maidana only.

“When you have someone with that caliber in front of you, you want to step up your game,” Guerrero said. “I know that he isn’t going to take any shortcuts. He is preparing to be at his best ability and that’s what I’m doing too. This is the proper way to do it.”

There is no easy road at Guerrero’s camp and an extensive sparring session Wednesday, the second of three scheduled for the week, with two boxers readying for August fights, keeps the five-time world champion on his toes.

“I have them switching in and out so I can get that fresh look,” Guerrero said. “They are going to work for their fight. Having them come in working at their pace in preparing for their own fights, everything gets quicker, faster, sharper. So it’s working out perfect.

“I’m 100 percent. I feel great right now. After the last fight, I took a month off without doing anything in the gym, just relaxing and not punching. You have to give your body that recovery time and I recover well. My hands are good, my legs are good my shoulders are good.”

Everyday life may move a bit slower in the serene setting of Big Bear, but with the fight just a month away, Guerrero said his training will only increase in intensity.

“When you step back, the focus is on getting better and time just flies by,” Guerrero said. “I can’t leave any stone unturned. Before you know it the fight is here.”

n Robert Guerrero’s publicist Mario Serrano will be at Net Fitness, 7560 Monterey St., tonight from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. selling tickets to the Aug. 27 bout at HP Pavilion.

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