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Is Josh Taylor hurting his popularity by fighting Jack Catterall?

Josh Taylor boxing photo

By Scott Gilfoid: Josh Taylor feels that he’s finally getting the recognition from the boxing world that he’s craved after six years as a professional. It’s too bad that Taylor isn’t showing more ambition in his next fight now that he’s getting the attention he wants.

Taylor has been talking about moving up to 147 to take on WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford. Well, Josh should have done that rather than waste his growing popularity on a dull fight against Jack Catterall. This writer has seen only a handful of Catterall’s battles, and he was awful in all of them.

Why is Catterall ranked #1?

It’s unclear why the WBO has Catterall ranked at #1 because he’s never beaten anyone that you can call a good 140-pounder. Indeed, the contenders ranked below Catterall in the World Boxing Organization’s top 15 would likely defeat him quite easily.

Instead of fighting this guy, Taylor should be getting his feet wet in the 147-lb division against one of these killers:

  • Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis
  • Vergil Ortiz Jr.
  • David Avanesyan
  • Danny Garcia

Is it asking too much for Josh Taylor to fight one of these talents? No one cares about Taylor fighting Catterall, believe me, and he’s undermining the short-lived popularity that he got from his wins over Jose Ramirez and Regis Prograis.

The 30-year-old Scotland native Taylor (18-0, 13 KOs) is getting attention now from fans, but he could foul things up if he chooses to stay out of the ring for extended periods, as we’re seeing now and facing mediocre opposition.

Should Taylor have vacated his WBO title?

Josh would have been better off vacating his WBO 140-lb strap, swerved the fight against ‘El Gato’ Jack Catterall, and gone in the direction for a much more meaningful battle at light welterweight.

There are arguably over a dozen fighters in the 140-lb division that would bring Taylor far more attention than facing Catterall, who stands ZERO chance of beating Josh.

Josh Taylor boxing photo

This fight isn’t even sporting. Taylor vs. Catterall will be a slaughter, and it’s impossible to get excited about this match-up.

Josh should have dumped the WBO trinket and fought one of these guys:

  • Jose Ramirez
  • Jose Zepeda
  • Regis Prograis
  • Viktor Postol
  • Sandor Martin
  • Mikey Garcia
  • Shakhram Giyasov
  • Gary Antuanne Russell
  • Liam Paro
  • Arnold Barboza Jr.
  • Subriel Matias
  • Jeremias Ponce
  • Brandun Lee
  • Teofimo Lopez

I dare say that the entire bunch of these fighters would EASILY defeat Catterall and wouldn’t be close. Catterall is a mediocre fighter and an example of Josh Taylor showing no ambition.

Taylor hasn’t fought since last May, and he’s facing what many boxing fans believe to be a pedestrian-level fighter in Catterall in the next defense of his undisputed light welterweight titles on February 26th at The SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland.

Jack Catterall = Stay busy fight

Catterall (26-0, 13 KOs) would be an okay stay-busy fight for Taylor if he made a quick return bout two months after a tough title defense, but NOT after nine months of inactivity like we see here.

Taylor doesn’t need nine months to ramp up for a low-level defense against a domestic-level fighter like the 28-year-old Catterall. That’s wasteful, and it’s an example of a fighter undermining his efforts after a big win.

Despite having captured the WBSS tournament two years ago with a victory over unbeaten WBA 140-lb champion Regis Prograis in October 2019, it wasn’t until Taylor’s grueling narrow 12 round unanimous decision win over WBC/WBO champion Jose Ramirez last May that he finally began to get the attention that he so badly desires.
The SSE Hydro, Glasgow

I feel I’m now getting the recognition I deserve. I think I’ve been deserving of it for a long time, but now I’m on the best platform,” said Josh Taylor to Sky Sports.

Taylor says his fights will be shown to a wilder public

“My fights are now going to be shown to the wider public here [in the UK] and over in America as well, so my profile is only going to go through the roof now – especially if I keep getting the right results.”

“I have got my hands full, and I have to make sure that I go out there on form and he won’t get near me,” said Taylor.

If Taylor continues to underwhelm boxing fans by fighting guys like Catterall, it’s doubtful that his fights will be shown in the U.S.

Networks like ESPN need ratings, and Taylor won’t bring in the numbers they need if he continues to face weak opposition that the American boxing fans want to see.

Suppose Taylor wants to continue getting the recognition. In that case, he’s got to fight the likes of Terence Crawford, Errol Spence Jr., Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis, and Vergil Ortiz Jr. Taylor would be making a lot more noise if he were fighting one of these fighters than Catterall.

 




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