Who should Yordenis Ugas fight next?
By Justin Estuart: Current WBA “Super” welterweight titleholder, Yordenis Ugas (26–4, 12 KOs), now 34 years of age, is awaiting his next fight in 2021.
Coming off a split-decision victory against welterweight contender Abel Ramos (27–4–2, 21 KOs) on September 6, 2020, Ugas obtained the vacant WBA “regular” welterweight championship belt.
More importantly, Ugas was then elevated to “super” WBA champion on January 29, 2021, after the World Boxing Association announced that eight-division champion Manny Pacquiao (62–7–2, 39 KOs) would be held as the champion in recess due to inactivity.
With Ugas looking to defend his WBA welterweight title, let’s delve into three potential opponents:
A bout with rising welterweight star Jaron Ennis (27–0, 25 KOs) would be a compelling fight for both men. Concerning Ugas, it would be an interesting test as a champion to take on the undefeated fighter in Ennis, who is craving for a world title shot.
Ugas vs. Ennis would signify the theme of the veteran champion vs. an ascending prospect. For Ugas, taking on the young Ennis would be challenging, but the fight would be an all-out entertaining war between two strong orthodox stance boxers.
A matchup against the former “super” WBA welterweight titlist in Keith Thurman (29–1, 22 KOs) displays a legitimate welterweight matchup between two veteran fighters.
Although Thurman is coming off a loss and two-year layoff from the sport, Ugas vs. Thurman is a solid fight between top-10 welterweights in the division. Not to mention, the winner of a fight between Ugas and Thurman manifests another credible name on his resume. For Ugas, it would be the biggest win of his career if he is victorious.
A welterweight unification with the current WBO welterweight champion and Omaha native in Terence Crawford (37–0, 28 KOs) should be prioritized for Ugas for an opportunity to unify the division.
Since Pacquiao vs. Spence has been announced for August 21, 2021, with the WBC and IBF welterweight world titles on the line, a fight between Ugas and Crawford should happen, with the winner of both fights fighting for the undisputed 147 titles by the fourth quarter of 2021 or early 2022.
Concerning Ugas, a matchup with Crawford displays the notion of the Cuban brawler vs. the American switch-hitter. However, the primary factor of this fight happening is pending since Ugas is aligned with Premier Boxing Champions, and Crawford is signed with Top Rank Boxing.
If this unification unfolds, the winner will move on for bigger and better things with a clearer path towards an undisputed showdown with the winner of Pacquiao vs. Spence.
Overall, it has been a persistent path for Ugas. In spite of the controversies and defeats on his record, Ugas is prepared to defend his title as his next fight looms ahead.
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