According to Proboxinginsider.com on Thursday afternoon, Dewey Cooper believes his fighter, Jessica Rakoczy (32-3, 12 KO's) is primed to capture the WIBA super bantamweight title tonight when she takes on Ada Velez (20-4-3, 6 KO's) in the main event at the Coca Cola Center in Oklahoma City.
The bout takes place as part of "OKC Charity Fight Night," which is a black tie benefit show hosted by Ray Mancini. Asked about whether or not the inactivity in recent years would affect Jessica Rakoczy, Cooper dismissed the notion.
"Jessica pretty much trains most of the time. But lately she has been putting a lot of time training at Drysdale's to improve her jiu-jitsu and ground game more so than her boxing. Inactivity should not be a major problem in this bout. She took this fight on a three week notice, which, if there were anything that could affect her in the bout, it could be having only a short time to prepare. I honestly think it will not be a factor! I wouldn't want to go into a championship fight with any other woman in the world over Jessica!"
Rakoczy will need to be at her best since her opponent is no pushover. Ada Valez boasts an impressive resume, including victories over such fighters as Melinda Cooper and Mary Ortega. Her most impressive outings may have come when she handed Cooper her first two losses as a professional.
The question on the minds of many is whether or not the aforementioned MMA training will serve as a distraction for her boxing career. In the process of making her return to the ring, Rakoczy recently defeated Brittany Cruz after being away from the sport for more than three years. Her resume includes wins over Mia St. John, Jane Couch, Layla McCarter and Cindy Serrano. But in recent times she has been devoting a lot of her energy to MMA. Dewey Cooper doesn't see that as a problem.
"Jess training in MMA is not a distraction in my opinion. Even though MMA training has more components of training than boxing does, I feel it's a terrific way to defeat redundancy and/or boredom. Also from a physical aspect of combat, it requires more emphasis on conditioning and strength, which obviously is a good thing, especially when one has trained in boxing as long as Jessica has. She has been training boxing for the last 14 straight years, so doing Jits for the last 2 years is a good thing."
Dewey Cooper has served as Rakoczy's trainer for years. If there is anybody who knows her and her ability to meet challenges, it would be him. A fighter himself, it's the desire for competition that seems to most impress him when he discusses Jessica.
"Jessica loves to compete! Any fighter who has won a total of 7 overall championships obviously has an extreme inner hunger for combat. Being the natural athlete she is blessed to be, I think her focus will be on whatever matter is on hand! In other words, whichever style of fight is available, whether boxing or MMA, that will be her primary focus!"