Carlos Jackson sees an opportunity to shine in his upcoming challenge of Jonathan Guzman
After capturing his first title in July 2016, Jonathan Guzman was outpointed in his first title defense and subsequently took a 23-month hiatus from fighting.
For Carlos Jackson, that is the day his perception of the former junior featherweight titlist changed for good.
“I’m not worried, man,” the 32-year-old told The Ring. “When he lost [a unanimous decision to Yukinori Oguni in December 2016], I could tell that he was not taking boxing seriously.”
On Saturday, Guzman and Jackson meet in a scheduled eight-round junior featherweight affair from Madison Square Garden’s Hulu Theater in New York. The bout will take place on the undercard of the 10-round junior welterweight main event featuring title contender Jose Zepeda taking on Josue Vargas.
Guzman (24-1, 23 KOs), who hails from the Dominican Republic, has fought just twice since suffering the lone defeat of his pro career. He outpointed journeyman Roberto Castaneda over 10 rounds in a November 2019 bout in Oklahoma City. He followed up with a third-round knockout of another journeyman, Rodolfo Montoya, who floored Guzman in round two before hitting the deck himself in a slated six-round contest.
Jackson (17-1, 11 KOs), 32, of Atlanta, who is coming off an eight-round split decision victory over Weusi Johnson in February on the heels of his first loss in the bout prior, claims there is a significant difference in the way both men handled their first loss.
“I knew what I did wrong and I wanted to get back in the ring as soon as possible to show everyone that I was capable of being a better fighter,” he continued. “Guzman doesn’t have the hunger that I have right now.”
When asked if he felt that his opponent was mentally weak, Jackson refused to go that route.
“I wouldn’t say that. I think his goal was to become a champion and he accomplished that task,” he explained. “He made it, and now he’s popular in his hometown. People [in the Dominican Republic] want to be around him. And now he doesn’t have the hunger to fight anymore.
“Unfortunately for him, he’s facing a hungry dog on Saturday, and I’m going to do whatever it takes to get the win. I believe he is using our fight to get back into the game, but I’m just gonna chuck him right back out in front of the world.”