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Santa Cruz vs. Frampton: Carl sees this as legacy-building fight


By Scott Gilfoid: It’s generally agreed that Carl Frampton (22-0, 14 KOs) was quite lucky to have gotten out of his last fight with his hide intact against the big punching former WBA super bantamweight champion Scott Quigg last February.

It’s pretty much a given that the only reason the 5’5” Frampton won that fight was because of Quigg not fighting hard in the first six rounds. Quigg was asleep at the wheel until the last half of the contest, when he finally woke up and realized that he was in a real fight and that he needed to throw punches.

Frampton, 29, will be fighting next against WBA Super World featherweight champion Leo Santa Cruz (32-0-1, 18 KOs) on July 30 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Frampton sees this fight as one that will help create a legacy for him, as it’ll make him a two-division world champion and it will make him better known in the United States.

Right now, the U.S fans pretty much just know Frampton from his two-knockdown performance against 22-year-old Alejandro Gonzalez Jr. last year in July in El Paso, Texas. That wasn’t Gonzalez Jr. that was knocked down twice. It was Frampton. It’s kind of hard to create a legacy when you’re getting dropped over and over again by non-contenders like Gonzalez Jr., I imagine.

“I want to be in exciting fights. From here on in my career, I want to be great. Who better to face than Leo Santa Cruz?” said Frampton. “This is a chance to put my name down in history and become a two-weight world champion from Ireland.”

Frampton won’t have a ton of his fans there to support him in this fight like he’s been accustomed, although he likely will have more fans at the Barclays Center than Santa Cruz due to the large Irish community in the New York area. By Santa Cruz agreeing to have the fight staged in New York, he might have put himself at a slight disadvantage because Frampton will likely have more fans there than he will. It won’t be anywhere near the support that Frampton has when he’s fighting in the UK though. Santa Cruz at least has that going for him. However, I don’t know if it was a wise move on Santa Cruz’s part to agree to have the fight staged in New York, because that puts him at a disadvantage.

If I were Santa Cruz’s manager, I would have never agreed to that. I would have only agreed to have the fight staged in Texas or Los Angeles, California. No way would I have agreed to stage it in New York. I mean, Santa Cruz is the champion, not Frampton. Why in the heck should Santa Cruz be fighting in front of a crowd that is mainly going to be Frampton supporters on July 30? That does not make sense to me. Santa Cruz should have turned down the idea of fighting in New York, because that’s too generous to his opponent Frampton.

“This fight is huge for me because I really want to create a legacy. I know how people talk, and I think people will be talking about this for a very long time. I want people to remember me as a great fighter, that’s all,” said Frampton.

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