Josh Taylor on being happier, Hibs cup final, Tyson Fury advice and possible MMA future
World boxing champion and Scottish ace Josh Taylor is currently in Las Vegas, preparing for a massive bout against American José Ramírez.
An 18th career win for the Tartan Tornado would see him become undisputed light welterweight, unifying the division for the first time since Terrence Crawford in 2017.
Taylor takes on Ramírez in Nevada on May 22, the same day as his beloved Hibs face St Johnstone in the Scottish Cup final.
"You're going to watch history being made,” Taylor said, speaking via the BonusCodeBets.co.uk blog. “It's got the making of an absolute firecracker, a real gun fight.
"I believe it will be a classic performance, a total dominant performance from me. He's going to get blown away by the tornado. It's going to be the toughest fight of his life for sure.
"On the same day my team Hibs are playing in the Scottish Cup Final. If they win on May 22 and I win, it's a great day for Edinburgh and a great day for Scotland. It would be absolutely massive and the celebrations will be huge when I get back."
Taylor is still eyeing a “bucket list” fight at Easter Road or “a once in a lifetime opportunity” at Edinburgh Castle, perhaps facing Crawford “in the middle of the summer with the castle lit up in the background at night”.
While that can be classed a short-to-medium-term goal, the Ramírez fight is the here and now, and his second under trainer Ben Davison having switched from Shane McGuigan.
Taylor, who could walk out to ‘Yes Sir, I can Boogie’, admits to being “more relaxed” and a more “round fighter".
"It's completely different in all aspects,” he said. “It's unbelievable. The two of them are very good coaches, but very different. With Ben I believe he's added more to my game, more to my arsenal. You'll see on fight night what we've been working on
"I am just completely happier. The way he breaks things down, going over the fundamentals [highlighting] some things I was forgetting and things I do very well that I was neglecting.
"I'm not frustrated or unhappy about other things that are going on. I'm totally content and focusing totally on what I'm doing.”
Future beyond boxing
Taylor, who has rented a house away from the strip, has been able to pick the brains of Tyson Fury.
"It's been pretty lively. Obviously I've been training my guts off but it's been a good laugh as well and making that training the little more enjoyable.
"He's been giving me little bits of advice, stuff he thinks I could do and things that could work in the fight. He's been giving me some really good bits of advice.”
Looking longer term, Taylor, a junior taekwondo champion, is open to giving MMA a go but his focus is boxing “for the next three or four years”.
"I wouldn't be afraid to give it a try,” he said. “I'd need to learn a lot of the groundwork game, but I'd definitely get in that cage and have a go, 100 percent.
“I want to achieve as much as I possibly can. I'm totally focused on boxing right now. But if the opportunity came along of course I'd have a fight. I just don't think I could take the shin kicks!"