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Well, if the 147 lb. division is a house, then James Page not only retained his WBA welterweight title on Saturday night, but he also took the bite out of the division's guard dog when he unanimously outpointed Jose Luis Lopez on SHOWTIME.

In this case, as in most households, the dog is always more of a threat to an intruder than the resident themselves. In other words, James Page is like a burglar on the loose in the 147 lb. residence, and there might not be any dogs left to stop him.

Page, who got up off the deck (the rope was holding him up) after a a barrage of punches from Lopez in the last 30 seconds of the third round, spent some time with yours truly yesterday, 24 hours after getting off a plane from Atlantic City.

RT-Congrats, not only did you win, but you won impressively.
JP-Lopez was tough. I didn't ever imagine hitting somebody so hard and them still standing. I wasn't talking. I thought I'd stop him.
RT-Tell me what happened in the third?
JP-I got hit with a great right on the button. And as I went back to the ropes, he was coming, and I could see him. I was thinking right, and he threw a good left. I wasn't as hurt as it may have seemed. Man, that first punch was a great shot.
RT-One of my radio listeners from your home town of Pittsburg, CA was amazed with how far you've come in a short time. I mean, you were a sparring partner 11 months ago. And now, you're the hardest puncher in the welterweight division. I saw Felix Trinidad in the ring before the fight, I didn't see him afterwards though.
JP-I think Don (King) is going to get me a couple of fights, the first on the Holyfield-Lewis card. (Felix) Trinidad is going to fight (Vincent) Pettway. Then, Trinidad and I can go.
RT-Your thoughts on that?
JP-I don't think he can take the heat. And I don't think Oscar can take the heat. And I don't think they coulkd have taken Lopez' punches and continued either.
RT-Is Trinidad the best?
JP-Hey, Trinidad hasn't fought nobody really. Yory Boy Campas, that's it. He's been off a while and fighting Vincent Pettway, well it ain't going to be like fighting me. Can these guys stay in the kitchen when I turn up the heat. Do you think any of those guys, Pernell Whitaker, Trinidad, Oscar, or Ike Quartey, they can't handle my power? Hey, I didn't have no promoter giving me an easy way to go. I had to prove myself, to show that I can truly fight. First (Andrei) Pestriav, in his hometown. And then a guy nobody else wanted to fight, I had to beat Lopez to get people to know who James Page was.
RT-What about the referee Tony Perez?
JP-I thought he was for Lopez. Ferdie Pacheco, he was for Lopez. Man, I was thinking all these Latin guys against me. Thank God, the Latin Judges weren't.
RT-Were you worried before the decision was announced?
JP-No, I was thinking. They may have given him a two point round in that round where I slipped and Tony Perez called it a knockdown. And there was the third,. But I didn't think I lost enough rounds to lose the fight.
RT-That was smart, making the referee pick you up after the slips.
JP-Man, that was crazy.
RT-How much did you and Lopez weigh?
JP-I weighed 153 lbs. Debbie King said Lopez weighed 171 in the dressing room. I didn't see it. But s*it, he was so strong in his upper body.
RT-Who is your mandatory contender?
JP-It was Lopez. So, we can pick and choose.
RT-Who is out there?
JP-I'm willing and I'm ready for any welterweight. I beat the toughest guy out there. Forget about my power, do you think Oscar or Trinidad could have taken those shots? Without out trying to sound cocky, they can put me in there with whoever. James Page will do what the other guys won't. I will fight anybody.


The WBA welterweight champion will be joining me this Saturday night on the Talk America Radio Network, when I do my thing as host of Ring Talk, the insider's look into the world of boxing. Page and I will hook it up as Ring Talk will do a special LIVE remote broadcast at Rickey's Sports Lounge in San Leandro, CA from 11 PM ET (8 PM Calif. time) for two hours.


Michael Grant, the 6'7, 252 lb. heir apparent to the heavyweight crown, has also agreed to appear this Saturday.


That's right, Ring Talk airs LIVE at 11:06 PM ET on the Internet Saturday & Sundays at


Then you need to go and spend a few minutes downloading the free software. After you do this, you can listen to radio broadcasts on both the Talk America "1" Radio Network and the Talk America Radio "2" Networks which air Ring Talk Saturday and Sunday evenings.


On Saturday night, the Talk America "1" Network airs two hours of Ring Talk at 11:06 PM ET (8 :06 PM PT).


The Sunday show is an hour long and airs on Talk America "2" aka "The Deuce." This Sunday, Fernando Vargas is the scheduled guest.


Talk "1" and Talk "2" have separate LIVE audio channels at

Pedro Fernandez

The writer can be reached at

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