Maxi Hughes: Underdog with a Plan for Undefeated William Zepeda this Saturday on DAZN

By Dan Ambrose - 03/12/2024 - Comments

Maxi Hughes (26-6-2, 5 KOs) isn’t concerned about being the underdog in his fight against the unbeaten highly ranked lightweight contender William Zepeda (29-0, 25 KOs) for their 12-round clash this Saturday, March 16th, on DAZN.  The two 135-lb contenders are heading at The Chelsea at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.

Hughes, 34, enters this fight after losing to former unified lightweight champion George Kambosos Jr. by a controversial 12-round majority decision last July in Shawnee, Oklahoma.

Many boxing fans had Hughes winning that fight. If Hughes had won, he’d be facing Vasily Lomachenko next for the vacant IBF lightweight belt instead of Zepeda with no belt on the line.

The clash against Kambosos showed how tough it is to get the decision against the A-side fighter, especially a popular ex-champion.

The Veteran’s Edge

“He’s undefeated, and apparently, he was Golden Boy’s fighter of the year last year. I have to look at it differently for where I exploit him,” said Maxi Hughes to Boxing News on X, talking about his fight this Saturday, March 16th, against William Zepeda on DAZN at The Chelsea at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.

“Obviously, I’m going to be an underdog, which I always am, but that doesn’t bother me. But when you look past it, I’ve boxed more high-level opponents than he has. He’s obviously boxed decent kids,” Hughes continued about Zepeda.

The advantage of Hughes’s experience is that it is slim compared to Zepeda. Hughes’s toughest competition has come from these fighters:

George Kambosos Jr.
Kid Galahad
Jovanni Straffon
Jono Carroll
Sam Bowen

In contrast, Zepeda beat Joseph ‘JoJo’ Diaz, Rene Alvarado, Mercito Gesta, and Hector Tanajara Jr.

Analyzing the Competition

“His highest has been JoJo Diaz, a former two-weight world champion and a former super featherweight world champion Rene Alvarado,” said Hughes. “They were his two biggest names, and they were probably his hardest fights. He went the distance with both of those guys.”

The way Zepeda looked in his recent fights against Gesta, Diaz Jr., and Jaime Arboleda, he’s going to be hard for Hughes to beat with his style of fighting. Zepeda is going to pressure him and make things difficult on Saturday.

“The way we look at it is, what can I do against him? He’s not fought anybody like me. So, I’ve got to use my experience and get the job done,” said Hughes.