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Keith Thurman targeting Yordenis Ugas for WBA 147-lb title

Keith Thurman

By Dan Ambrose: Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman is expressing interest in challenging WBA ‘regular’ welterweight champion Yorgenis Ugas for his title in early 2021, and he welcomes that fight.

Former WBA/WBC 147-lb champion Thurman (29-1, 22 KOs) made it clear last week that Ugas (26-4, 12 KOs) is a fight he’d like if possible next year. Thurman wants to fight for a world title, and he’s named these champions as ones on his hit list at 147:

  • Errol Spence Jr – IBF/WBC
  • Terence Crawford – WBO
  • Manny Pacquiao – WBA ‘Super World’
  • Yordenis Ugas – WBA ‘regular’

Pacquiao doesn’t appear to be interested in giving Thurman a rematch after beating him by a 12 round majority decision last year in July. As far as Spence goes, he’s already said he’s not going to give Thurman the time a day because he never gave him a title shot when he held the WBA strap.

Crawford would likely be willing to fight Thurman, but it’s unclear if his promoters at Top Rank would give him the green light to take that fight.

Thurman says Ugas could be next

Keith Thurman

“Fight Ugas, Charlo, or Hurd. Okay, Ugas is a welterweight. That’s real talk,” said Thurman on his Instagram. “That could be One Time’s next fight. It could be me and Ugas in the ring all night.

“That’s a fight.  I see that s a legitimate come back for me, and he’s a regular champion right now. He’s got decent status. I like that,” said Thurman about his next possible fight.

The former Cuban national champion Ugas, 34, recently defeated Abel Ramos by a 12 round split decision last September to claim the vacant World Boxing Association World Welterweight title.

Ugas is open to a fight against the 31-year-old Thurman if he’s serious about wanting to challenge for a title. For Thurman, it’s arguably his best shot at winning a world title at 147 again. Pacquiao already beat Thurman, and Spence and Crawford would likely be heavy favorites to beat him too.

One time would have problems with Ugas

Keith Thurman

Thurman’s injury and subsequent inactivity issues have hurt his career, and he doesn’t look like the same guy he used to be. Ugas would be a very tough fight for Thurman right now, and he may not have enough left in the tank to beat him.

Ugas lost a controversial 12 round split decision to Shawn Porter last year in March 2019 in Carson, California. More than a few boxing fans saw Ugas as the winner of that fight.

Thurman hasn’t fought in 2020, and when he does return to the ring next year, he’ll likely have been out of the ring for close to two years.


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