NEW YORK -- Welterweight Zab Judah pulled a fast one on
promoters and the media Wednesday, allowing his father, Yoel, to
replace him on a conference call.
Judah was supposedly publicizing his June 9 fight with
undefeated WBA champion Miguel Cotto. The call lasted about 30
minutes, during which Judah told sports writers, "We are going in
to take the title, you are going to see blood, guts and sweat. You
are going to see somebody hit the floor, I promise you."
Moments after the conference call concluded, Top Rank publicist
Lee Samuels was contacted by several writers who said they believed
Zab Judah was not providing the answers.
"We don't promote Zab, we promote Cotto," Samuels said. "So I
immediately checked with Judah's camp and they said it was his
father on the conference call."
Samuels said a few of the phrases used by Judah tipped the
writers that it was a hoax.
"Mea culpa," Samuels said. "I called Zab's number 10 minutes
ahead to make sure he would be ready and I assumed the person I was
talking to was Zab. I've been doing conference calls for Top Rank
since 1982 and I've never been snookered like this before. I would
have made a lousy contestant on the game show 'To Tell The
Truth.' But I do apologize to the media for this."
Samuels said Top Rank would attempt to reschedule a conference
call, this time with the correct Judah. And he promised that next
Wednesday's call with Cotto will feature the real thing.