Teofimo Faces Kambosos Jnr, Figueroa vs. Fulton Fight Preview + Thoughts, and Stuff.
Teofimo Lopez vs. George Kambosos Jnr.
Saturday, November 27th, 5 PM PST – DAZN
What was once one of the most exciting bouts in boxing has now become an endless saga filled with turmoil, as Teofimo Lopez, a year ago, was the boxer of the year, and a star. Triller randomly overbid to win his first IBF title defense against George Kambosos Jnr, who had beat Lee Selby, and is managed by Peter Kahn, training with Javiel Centeno. The fight was exciting as it looked to be Triller’s first “true boxing card”, yet – delay-after-delay came.
Then, Triller lost the bout, and now DAZN is throwing the fight, as the feeling of Teofimo’s first defense of a lightweight title, no longer is excitement, but rather – can we get this over with. Not because of the match-up itself, but for how long it has stalled the division, and sport.
Both men have been in camp for 11-months training for one and another, meaning more than likely one, if not both fighters will be burnt out. At the media day, Junior Lopez, our 2020 Trainer of the Year, got into with George Kambosos’ father as well as his team in general. As one thing is real – the two teams don’t like each other.
It is crazy to think that after beating Vasyl Lomachenko in 2020, Teofimo Lopez will fight just once in 2021, and it isn’t even with his current promoter Top Rank Inc, but rather on DAZN with Matchroom Boxing.
The situation is a mess – hopefully we get a meaningful fight out of it. Since besides the two combatants making a lot of money, a lot of time has been wasted.
The undercard for this bout feels thrown together quickly, not unlike the show. The co-main event will feature Azinga Fuzile vs. Kenichi Ogawa, for the vacant IBF junior lightweight title. The winner will be a world champion, that more than likely a better fighter will target in the future to win a world title. Title challengers I am looking at the winner of Zelfa Barrett vs. Bruno Tarimo to challenge the winner of this fight, more than likely in the U.K.
Featherweight Ray Ford will face Felix Caraballo, a former Shakur Stevenson opponent in a 10-round bout. Ford is a really good fighter, who in ten pro fights is already a ten-round fighter.
Reshat Mati faces Gregory Trenel in an 8-round welterweight bout. Mati has to look better soon, as his recent performances have looked cautionary.
Zhang Zhilei will slug it out with Bernardo Marquez in a 10-round, heavyweight affair – Zhilei at one-time was a Roc Nation Sports boxing prospect, his career has since stalled, and now he is trying to position himself to get a big money fight against a top heavyweight.
Credit to Matchroom as the card features two women’s bouts as decorated amateur Christina Cruz will face Maryguenn Vellinga Hinz, at flyweight, and Ramala Ali will return to action as well.
In short, unless you’re bored – you can skip to the main event on this card, be alright.
Figueroa vs. Fulton
Saturday, November 27th, 6 PM PST – Showtime
Brandon Figueroa vs. Stephen Fulton Jr., will see the two putting their world titles on the line, the WBC and WBO, in a battle of world champions, seeking unification. Figueroa, a high volume pressure guy, and Fulton, who feels like he quite possibly has the ceiling of a boxing superstar if everything goes right. My gut tells me Fulton wins this bout, but at the same time, Figueroa has a style that you can’t train for you, have to adjust to it in the ring. This is tactical versus toughness on Showtime. Figueroa in the fight week build-up has also stated this bout might be his last at 122 lbs.
“People are going to talk and underestimate me. They think I’m just going to go in there and “rock ‘em, sock ‘em robot”. But I’m very intelligent. That’s the reason why I’m undefeated. That’s the reason why I have a lot of knockouts. I’m a great finisher. I know how to put pressure on you. Once he gets hit with a big shot and feels my power, it’s going to totally change this fight,” said Figueroa. “I come to do my job. I come in to execute my game plan. A lot of people underestimated me against [Luis] Nery but my game plan was to go out there and dominate and do what I had to do, and I went and got him out of there. This time is no different. It’s the same story. People underestimate me so much that I don’t even care anymore. I know what my abilities are. My team knows my abilities and my potential. I know what I’m capable of inside the ring, even though I don’t look like a fighter. That’s my style. I just go out there and do what I have to do and have fun doing it. I’m excited to do it again.”
“My resume is better [than Figueroa’s] and I feel comfortable saying that. I’ve taken risks since the beginning of my career. I’ve faced undefeated fighters that no one wanted to face. I’ve taken the harder road to get to this fight,” said Fulton. “This boils down to who wants it the most. The power, the strength and the speed can all die down during a fight. All that’s left is who wants it the most. This isn’t just about being unified champion, it’s about this man believing that he can beat me. That’s what motivates me.”
Ra’eese Aleem returns against Eduardo Baez, who is riding a career best 12 fight unbeaten streak with one draw thrown in the mix as this 10 round junior featherweights bout should create a world title contender. Aleem last beat Vic Pasillas who is considered one of the best fighters without a world title, and Baez’s lone career loss is to Mauricio Lara, a current world champion.
Gary Antonio Russell saw his last fight canceled within the first punch as a clash of heads, but now Russell will face a tough opponent in Alexandro Santiago, promoted by Paco Damian in a 10-round, bantamweight bout. For those unaware, Santiago is undefeated in 19-fights, with draws against Antonio Nieves, Jose Martinez (twice), and Jerwin Ancajas. Russell needs to separate himself from Santiago, no small feat, to make a statement on the world stage, Saturday.
Undefeated super lightweight Rock Dodler Myrthil will be tested against Kevin Johnson in a 50-50 fight that is not featured on TV sadly. Johnson just beat an undefeated fighter prior. The winner of this I would like to see face Darwin Price on TV, for a smaller form of a title.
Former world title challenger Aaron Alameda will be featured in an 8-round bout.
Kenny Davis Jr., from Reno, Nevada, who once fought in San Mateo, California, will also be featured on this card.
Saturday, November 27th – Philly, Paul Kroll vs. Mark Dawson could be the fight of the weekend, as a rematch from the amateurs will see a Philly battle between 2016 U.S. Olympian Paul Kroll facing Mark Dawson, Jr., with Philly pride on the line. This is one of the most evenly matched welterweight bouts in sometime and is available
Erika Cruz Hernandez will fight this Friday on DAZN, headlining a card out of Mexico. Cruz defeated Jelena Mrdjenovich to win the WBA featherweight title in her last bout on Ring City USA.
Tonight, November 24th, undefeated cruiserweight Alante Green will face undefeated Taylor Duerr, in a battle to see who will go to the national level on a Bobby Hitz card taking place at The Dome at the Ballpark in Rosemont, Ill.
Super middleweight Kendrick Ball Jr. will see where he is at as he is facing upset minded Mike Guy, who has made a career out of beating untested young fighters, on this same card Shelly Vincent returns to action.