Frampton rejects Rigondeaux fight
By Patrick McHugh: Carl Frampton (23-0, 14 KOs) says he has no interest in facing unbeaten WBA super bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux in his next fight. Frampton says there’s no money in a fight against the unbeaten Rigondeaux despite seeing him as a fantastic fighter. Frampton says he’s more interested in fighting unification fights against WBC champion Gary Russell Jr. or IBF champion Lee Selby.
Frampton beat WBA featherweight champion Leo Santa Cruz (31-1-1, 18 KOs) by a 12 round majority decision last Saturday night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Frampton got the better of Santa Cruz in the first half of the fight, and then held onto the lead in the second half when he rallied.
The scores were 117-111, 116-112, and 114-114. The fight was very close and a lot closer than the two judges that gave Frampton the win. If Santa Cruz had fought hard for the first six rounds instead of boxing, he likely would have beaten Frampton. Santa Cruz used the wrong game plan for the fight.
“I just want to be involved in big fights, memorable fights. I don’t need to be disrespectful to guys, I just want to get on with it,” said Frampton. ”I wouldn’t want to be involved in a fight with Rigondeaux. That would be another stinker, and then people start to think this guy is boring and start to not like me. I want to be involved in big fights. I want to have a comfortable life after boxing. There’s no money in that fight,” said Frampton.
Rigondeaux has been trying to get a fight against Frampton for several years, but there’s never been mutual interest. Now that Frampton is the WBA champion, it’s not surprising that he’s still not interested in fighting Rigondeaux. The excuse that Frampton gave about there not being any money in a fight against Rigondeaux is truthful, but Frampton still could have fought him last year when he fought little known Alejandro Gonzalez Jr. There was no money in that fight. Frampton fought Chris Avalos before that. There was obviously no money in that fight either and yet Frampton still fought him.
What Frampton isn’t saying is that Rigondeaux is too good for his own good, and that he wants no part of taking a risky fight against him. If Frampton really wanted to fight Rigondeaux, he could have done it last year when he was wasting time fighting little known fighters like Avalos and Gonzalez Jr. Those guys weren’t on the same level as Rigondeaux, but Frampton still fought them.
“Lee Selby is a great fighter, someone I respect and one of the best UK fighters. That’s a fight that interests me, there’s Gary Russell, all these guys,” said Frampton. “I made it a bit harder than I needed to, I fought with my heart rather than my head at times but I wanted to be involved in one of those fights and I think people will remember that for a very long time.”
Selby seems to be the guy that Frampton is interested in fighting. Unless Santa Cruz’s management has a rematch clause to force Frampton to fight them next, it’s likely that Selby will get the fight next.
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