WBC light welterweight champion Regis Prograis says he’s open to taking on IBF 140-lb champ Subriel Matias in a unification fight after his title defense against Devin Haney this Saturday night.
Prograis doesn’t like Matias being called the “dark horse” in the 140-lb division because that’s a label he should hold. The way that Matias has destroyed his last five opponents has got fans buzzing, viewing him as the most exciting fighter in the division by a long shot.
Many fans are now rating the hard-hitting Puerto Rican fighter Matias (20-1, 20 KOs) as the #1 champion in the 140-lb division following his fifth round stoppage victory over previously unbeaten Shohjahon Ergashev (23-1, 20 KOs) on November 25th.
Prograis (29-1, 24 KOs) watched Matias’ demolition job of Ergashev and his previous fight against Jeremias Ponce last February, and he liked what we saw of him, particularly the pressure that he put on both fighters.
It’s unclear how serious Prograis is about wanting to fight Matias because if he defeats Haney, he’ll surely be looking at big-money fights against the likes of Ryan Garcia, Teofimo Lopez, Gervonta Davis, or a rematch with Devin.
Prograis open to Matias fight
Matias isn’t as well known as those fighters with the casual boxing fans, and he might be too dangerous for Prograis. We saw how afraid Regis looked in his last fight against Danilieto Zorrilla, and hard to imagine him being willing to brawl with a slugger like Matias.
Zorrilla would be food for a fighter like Matias, who would likely cut off the ring on him and score a quick knockout. Of course, Matias is a far better pressure fighter than Prograis; he’s younger and arguably braver.
“Definitely, for sure. They say he was calling me out for a while. I didn’t know nothing about him. He fought on my undercard in New Orleans before, so I didn’t know nothing about him,” said Regis Prograis to Fight Hub TV when asked if he’d be interested in fighting IBF light welterweight champion Subriel Matias.
“They said that he was calling me out, and I said, ‘Who is this dude?’ I saw who he was, and then he won a belt. ‘Alright.’ My eyes opened a little, and then he fought last weekend. I was like, ‘Alright, we can fight,'” said Regis.
It would be a shock if Prograis took a fight with Matias because he was flat-out scared of Zorrilla after being dropped early and staggered.
Prograis fought scared for the remainder of the fight, seeming to purposefully be slow in cutting off the ring for fear that he would walk into another one of Zorrilla’s powerful right-hand counters.
The mystique that Regis had going into that fight was blown apart by that poor performance, making boxing fans view him in a different light.
“If he’s a dark horse, then I feel like I’m a dark horse. We can fight and see who the real dark horse is. So, I’m definitely open to that, but obviously, we’ve got Devin right now,” said Prograis, seemingly making an excuse as to why he doesn’t need to fight Matias.
“Of course, I watched two or three. I watched the ones on TV. I watched the last one [Shohjahon Ergashev on November 25th], and I think I saw the fight where he won the belt [against Jeremias Ponce last February],” Prograis said about Subriel Matias.
Is Subriel Matias too good for Prograis?
If Prograis is seriously interested in fighting Matias, he would be speaking in absolute terms rather than saying, ‘Ah, we got Devin right now.’ That just made Prograis sound weak, like he doesn’t want any part of mixing it with Matias, which you can’t blame him if he’s afraid.
You don’t hear Teofimo, Haney, or Ryan Garcia volunteering to fight Matias, do you? They obviously know that he would potentially mess up their careers, sending them to oblivion from whence they came. Ryan looked so awful that he should never fight Matias because he lacked the talent and courage.
“He puts a lot of mental pressure on, but I think the dudes he’s fighting, they don’t have the experience,” said Prograis about on the opposition that Matias has beaten. “The dude he just fought, Ergashev really fast. Mentally, he broke him down really, really fast. After two rounds, he broke him down.
“I don’t know what kind of training he was doing to get broken down like that, or is Matias really that good? I don’t know, but for me, he just broke him [Ergashev] down real easy.”
It sounds like Prograis is green with envy for him to be devaluing Subriel’s recent fifth round stoppage victory over Ergashev. You could see why he broke the Russian fighter down, and it had nothing to do with a lack of training on his part.
“Matias was landing huge shots on Ergashev that took the fight out of him, wearing him down to the point where the contest needed to be halted to save him.
“That would be a big, brutal fight,” said Prograis about him and Matias. “I do welcome that, but Devin first.