IF MICHAEL CONLAN chooses to continue with his boxing career promoter Frank Warren would like to offer him an opponent from Queensberry.
Conlan is 10 days removed from a defeat to Luis Alberto Lopez in Belfast. On a night when so much hope was in the air at the SSE Odyssey the Mexican silenced hopes and dreams with a fifth-round knockout in their featherweight bout.
There may be only 20 fights on Conlan’s record but the two biggest have resulted in defeat. Lopez and Leigh Wood can now boast of having knockout wins over a man who had been tipped for the very top when he signed with Top Rank in 2016.
In a recent interview Conlan said his “head wasn’t right” against Lopez and that he “didn’t follow the game plan”. The 31-year-old is yet to say whether he will carry on fighting.
Warren had his own featherweight on the Belfast card. Liverpool’s Nick Ball made it 18 wins from 18 fights with a 12th round stoppage against Ludomo Lamati. Sadly, the South African collapsed shortly after and left the ring on a stretcher before being taken to hospital. The 31-year-old is still under the supervision of medical staff in Belfast and is making progress. Daily updates can be followed on the boxing5.promotion Instagram account.
The career of Nick Ball is on an upward trajectory and Warren spoke to Chatterbox hosts Josh Denzel and Carl Frampton about Conlan’s loss and the idea of his Scouse featherweight facing the Belfast favourite.
“For me it just wasn’t his time,” he said of Conlan’s defeat to Lopez.
“He’s a very brave guy, we know that, and he tried his heart out, but I think the fella was just a little bit too much for him. It doesn’t mean he can’t come again. There’s some good fights if he still wants to carry on boxing and get himself back into a position.
“I think a real good fight would be him and Nick Ball. Would be a tremendous fight between the two of them which could go on in Belfast because they’re such a great audience over there, they’re like boxing connoisseurs. I think that would be a great fight to put on in Belfast.”
Frampton, a regular pundit on BT Sport’s boxing coverage asked Warren if he thought facing an aggressive and heavy-handed fighter like Ball would interest Conlan. Particularly after losing two fights by knockout in recent times.
“For me and I’m being sort of probably very commercial and blunt, it is a commercial fight,” Warren said.
“It’d gauge where Nick Ball is and whether he’s ready for the big time or not. Some people got views on that, and other people think he’s not quite ready yet, but we would find out if we made that fight.
“You’re right what you say Carl he has had two knockouts but if he is going to continue, I mean you can’t go back go backwards, you’ve got to get started at a certain level. I think him and Nick would be a really good bust-up for everybody to watch because the styles will make the fights.”