Josh Taylor not eager to fight Teofimo Lopez, says he must get in line at 140
By Allan Fox: Josh Taylor reacted negatively last weekend to Teofimo Lopez, stating that his goal for 2022 is to become a two-time undisputed champion by capturing the four belts at 140.
Sadly, the Scottish fighter Taylor clarifies that he WON’T be giving the famous American star Teofimo Lopez a shot at his undisputed championship anytime soon.
Teofimo is the upstart, the young lion coming after the 30-year-old Taylor to rip away his belts quickly without having earned his place as of yet in the 140-pound division.
It took the 2012 Scottish Olympian Taylor four years to win his first world title at 140 in 2019. As such, it’s not surprising that he would feel a sense of annoyance at hearing Teofimo talk of wanting to jump straight into a title shot against him after one fight in the division.
Josh Taylor tells Teofimo to get in line
Taylor is directing Teofimo to get in line, behind British fighter Jack Catterall and many other contenders ranked highly by the four sanctioning bodies at light welterweight.
“He’s got a long queue ahead of him to get that fight,” Josh Taylor told iFL TV on his lack of interest in fighting Teofimo Lopez.“So he can wait all he wants, bark all he wants.”
“Again? Becoming undisputed, again? Yeah, I’ve seen that. Well, the thing is, he was never undisputed in the first place, so he’s going to have to try at some point.”
— Teofimo Lopez (@TeofimoLopez) January 5, 2022
In fairness to Teofimo, you can understand why he refers to himself as a former undisputed champion at 135 because the World Boxing Council saw him as such.
While Devin Haney held the WBC lightweight title, he didn’t fight for it. He was installed as the lightweight champion by the organization outside of the ring, and as a result, he’s never been viewed as the rightful WBC belt holder by the fans. Currently, George Kambosos, the WBC Franchise champion, is seen as the champion for that organization at 135.
It’s the WBC’s fault for muddying the picture at lightweight by creating the Franchise belt in 2019. If they hadn’t done that, Teofimo would have been viewed as the rightful WBC champion at lightweight after his win over Vasily Lomachenko in 2020.
Taylor shooting himself in the foot
Taylor’s attitude about facing the talented American Teofimo is decidedly negative for some strange reason, as it would appear that he’s shooting himself in the foot by not being eager to face the young 24-year-old.
If Taylor wants to become a huge star and make massive money, he must focus on the high-profile fights against guys like Teofimo Lopez rather than time-wasting matches against little-known fighters like Jack Catterall.
You can argue that Taylor could fight Catterall a dozen times, and he wouldn’t attract the same kind of interest as he would in one fight against Teofimo.
That’s why you have to wonder who is giving Taylor advice about his career because he’s going in the wrong direction and undermining it by ruling out fights that would make him a giant star and more money.
The unbeaten Taylor (18-0, 13 KOs), who holds all the belts at light welterweight, says Teofimo was NEVER the undisputed champion at 135.
Although Teofimo (16-1, 12 KOs) held four titles until losing them to George Kambosos on November 27th, he wasn’t the undisputed champion at lightweight because he lacked the WBC title held by Devin Haney.
Teofimo would have been a nightmare for Haney, who can’t punch and has been repeatedly hurt in recent fights against Jorge Linares and Joseph ‘Jojo’ Diaz Jr.
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