THEY have been linked for a number of years now and fielded more questions on each other than a cricketer does balls over an entire career, but it has always been civil between Jamie Conlan and Paul Butler- until now that is!.
With the link up between MGM and Frank Warren the long talked about fight looks inevitable and both have been asked about it ahead of their upcoming fights. Mutual respect remained for the most part and both politely praised the other whilst expressing confident in their ability to overcome ‘a tough challenge’.
However, in the build up to his fight with Junior Granados in the National Stadium this coming Saturday Conlan landed the first verbal blow suggesting he would knock out Butler in his home town of Liverpool if he so wished.
The former IBF bantamweight World champion took umbrage and instantly countered with a flurry. The Frank Warren talent contacted BoxNation to get a few things of his chest and questioned Conlan’s record, defence and more.
Butler also says he would win any bout between the pair in a convincing manner and could earn victory any which way he chose.
It’s pretty difficult to accurately assess Conlan because he’s not boxed anyone of note yet. From what I’ve seen, he does nothing exceptionally well, just the basics. It’s time for him to step up.
‘I watched him fight on the undercard the night (Carl) Frampton beat Martinez for the world title, and his Mexican opponent (Jose Estrella) gave him real trouble for four or five rounds before Conlan got a hold of the fight. He doesn’t move his head and he can’t ride a shot.
‘When we boxed as amateurs in the 2007 Commonwealth Feds in Liverpool, I beat Jamie on just two days notice when he was naturally the weight above me. I was boxing at 48kg back then, he was 51kg yet it was easy.
‘If we both win our scheduled fights, it could definitely happen. It’s a fight that very much interests me. In fact, I asked for it, for my comeback because Jamie has the WBO Inter-Continental belt which can get you a good ranking. But they said they wanted two or three more first. Truth.
‘I’d say Conlan’s on a similar level to Kal Yafai who the Board have mandated I defend my British title against. Both are untested.
‘Because we’re with rival promoters, the fight with Kal might not happen. The Conlan fight would be far easier to make.
‘And it’d be a real exciting fight. We’d probably feel each other out for a few rounds but eventually we’d lock horns and it’d ‘kick off’. Conlan doesn’t know how to take a backward step whereas I’m equally good front foot or back foot. Basically, I can beat him any way I choose.
‘That said, I think I’d win the fight pretty convincingly. I’m not going to say I’d stop him, just because he says he’ll stop me but I do think it’ll be pretty one-sided.
‘And as for me carrying psychological scars after my knockout loss to Tete….no chance! I was done with one shot by a very special fighter. It’s not as if I took a sustained belting.
‘In the amateurs I bounced back from defeats to win titles. Look at what my hero Marco Antonio Barrera came back to achieve after an early career knockout loss to Junior Jones.
‘As for Conlan being bigger and stronger than me, Conlan can read into that what he likes.
That’s what everyone said before I beat Stuey Hall and there’s no bigger bantam than Stuey so I’m hardly concerned by a super-fly.
‘When the match is made, hopefully sooner rather than later, Conlan’s gonna get properly dealt with.”