Teofimo Lopez keen to face Josh Taylor in UK for super-lightweight world title clash | Boxing News
Teofimo Lopez says he wants to face Josh Taylor in the UK next year and insists that he would knock the Scotsman out.
Former lightweight world champion Lopez is currently preparing for his second appearance in the super-lightweight division, the weight class where Taylor used to be the undisputed champion.
Taylor has vacated three of his four belts in order to pursue a rematch with Jack Catterall, after earlier this year claiming a controversial points win despite being knocked down by the English fighter.
If Taylor comes through the rematch, which is yet to be confirmed but expected to be held in February 2023, Lopez is hopeful of getting a shot at the WBO belt in the UK next year.
“I’d tear him up, from the body to the head, he’s not going to know which one I’m going to hurt him with,” Lopez told Sky Sports News.
“He’s going to think I’m going to the body, next thing he knows I’ll be going to the head.
“It’s going to be a great night. I honestly believe that I’ll knock him out too.
“I actually will put him down better than what Catterall did. He won’t come back up, that’s all I can tell you guys.”
Lopez faces a stiff challenge of his own before he can make plans for a trip to the UK, with the American taking on Sandor Martin on December 10, live on Sky Sports.
The 25-year-old says he would also be open to facing Catterall, in the event Taylor was to lose.
“These guys are solid base fighters, these guys are great champions,” Lopez said.
“They made a great fight happen first time around, so I’m looking forward to see what they both learned from each other, in terms of pros and cons. There are defects that fighters have and I want to see if they are able to capitalise on them.
“The only way we’re going to be able to find out is [when they fight], and I’ll be tuning in.
“A lot of people would like to see me take on Josh Taylor, and I’ve been calling him out.
“Especially to do it out there in the UK, I really want to experience that. I need to experience it and branch out in the sense of giving my love back to the UK – I’m getting so much from the UK it’s time that we give it back.”
Lopez, who announced himself as a star of the sport by stunning pound-for-pound contender Vasiliy Lomachenko in 2020, is looking to build on a knockout win over Pedro Campa in his super-lightweight debut in August.
Martin has stepped in place of Jose Pedraza, but Lopez says the Spaniard provides a tougher and more exciting matchup than his original opponent would have.
“I was very excited, more intrigued about this fight,” Lopez said of the change of opponent.
“We don’t overlook any fighter. Pedraza, he definitely has a resume of his own, but things happen and I’m glad the way it turned out – for the betterment of my career and for everyone else out there.
“Everyone’s been talking about this fight, the WBC actually declared this as an eliminator, and look at it now, we’re getting it earlier. Christmas came early for everyone out here.”