Gamboa-Ponce De Leon on Saturday: Yuriorkis to fight Lopez-Salido winner next
By Jason Kim: Former IBF/WBA featherweight champion Yuriorkis Gamboa (20-0, 16 KO’s) is in action this Saturday night against Daniel Ponce De Leon (41-3, 34 KO’s) in a fight that has a lot riding on it for the 29-year-old Gamboa.
Gamboa wants to beat Ponce De Leon to get to a fight against the winner of the featherweight clash between Orlando Salido and Juan Manuel Lopez next year. Fighting the winner of that fight is the first big step for Gamboa, as his promoter Bob Arum wants to then match him up against WBC/WBO bantamweight champion Nonito Donaire.
Hopefully, that fight can happen next year rather than later on down the line because sometimes these dream fights that Arum has planned in his head end up not materializing because he waits too long to make the fights. Gamboa will almost certainly do his part by taking out Ponce De Leon on Saturday night. It will then be up to Lopez to beat his next opponent Mike Oliver on October 1st to get in the position where Lopez can try and avenge his loss to Salido.
Gamboa defeated Jorge Solis by a 4th round TKO in his last fight in March. Gamboa knocked Solis down five times in the fight – twice in the second round, once in the third and two more times in the fourth round to get the stoppage. However, Gamboa opted not to weigh in for the fight and lost his IBF featherweight title because of it. But as good as Gamboa is it really doesn’t matter whether he’s holding down one or more of the trinkets anymore. He’s already widely considered to be the best fighter in the featherweight division by boxing fans and writers, and the only thing he needs now is more opposition.
Ponce De Leon will hopefully make it interesting for Gamboa. However, Gamboa has already sized Ponce De Leon up, and sees him as a similar fighter as Solis, which isn’t a good thing for Ponce De Leon. He’ll be lucky if he can make it to the 6th round on Saturday because Gamboa is in a Zone right now and he’s not going to be stopped by anyone least of all Ponce De Leon.