Joel Diaz: “I Wanted More Fights With Yildirim Before The Canelo Fight!”

Joel Diaz wishes that he had more time to work with Avni Yildirim

Avni Yildirim (center) with Coach Joel Diaz (right)
Avni Yildirim (center) with Coach Joel Diaz (right)

Joel Diaz wishes that he had more time to work with Avni Yildirim

When facing the best in any field, proper preparation and planning are often needed to succeed. When it comes to Anvi “Mr. Robot” Yildirim (21-2, 12 KO’s), he will have had time to plan but will he have the requisite chemistry? In his next at bat, Yildirim will take on WBA Super and WBC World Super Middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (54-1-2, 36 KO’s).

When he undertakes this daunting task, his chief second, Joel Diaz, will man his corner for the first time. So while they have had time to mesh their personalities in the gym, they have not done so in a professional boxing match. It should go without saying that it is not ideal to go on a test run against Canelo!


As Diaz professed to Boxing Social, he appreciates the fact that this is not an ideal scenario. Yet, when a great opportunity comes calling, sometimes you have no options but to answer. For Yildirim and Diaz, this was the case with the Canelo fight. Thankfully, even though they have never plied their trade as a team in a professional arena, they have worked closely together for roughly a year and a half now. In this time, Diaz does feel that they have established a great boxing rapport and partnership.

“I would have preferred for Avni to fight at least a couple more fights since I got him so that him and I can adapt with each other; get to know each other because this is my first fight with him. It’s tough for me. Since Avni Yildirim came to me and going straight into a mega-fight like this is tough! Sometimes when a trainer and a fighter meet for the first time, they need at least one or two fights, minimum two fights, to get to know each other, feel each other, see the character in you. You know, in a fight, working fights.”

“And I didn’t have the chance with Yildirim because he came to me in October 2019 and he had a fight midyear 2020, the pandemic hit. So there was no chance to work with him in a fight. So now, all of a sudden, with no opportunity, no chance of working a fight with him, to know him in the ring, we are going into a mega-fight. So we have to improvise and obviously we have to put in the work and mentally prepare him. Physically he is ready to go, mentally he is motivated and we are looking forward to a great fight!”

In his position, Diaz is all but obligated to say he believes Yildirim is ready to go. What else could he say? Yet, it will be entertaining to see if Mr. Robot and Coach Diaz can devise and execute a plan to shock the world.

By: Bakari Simpson

Featured Article: Joel Diaz: “We Cannot Leave The Canelo Fight To The Judges!”

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