I don’t think Leigh Wood and Josh Warrington will deliver the type of disappointing spectacle that took place in Las Vegas last weekend (between Canelo Alvarez and Jermell Charlo). Their styles and attitude mean both men will come to fight.
It’s a genuine world-class fight. Warrington has wins over Carl Frampton and Lee Selby, who were both world-class themselves. That was a while ago, however, and because he’s coming off a loss, you could ask whether he deserves this shot. But he is a former champion and this is a big fight particularly in this country.
Leigh Wood has proven himself to be at that level as well. When he beat Can Xu, he was impressive, and his win over Michael Conlan was a brilliant come from behind victory. I think this is going to be a really exciting fight. Obviously, it isn’t like the days of old with (Marco Antonio) Barrera and (Erik) Morales but today Wood and Warrington are two of the top fighters in the division. It’s good we get to see the fight and it’s actually happening. Luckily for fans in this country they’re both British and not too far away from each other. There also hasn’t been years and years of speculation, talk of purse splits and rematch clauses and all that sort of rubbish, so fair play to them.
Josh Warrington always brings the heat, is always very aggressive, and throws loads of shots, and I think Wood has improved and improved and turned into a good boxer-puncher in my opinion. I think the styles will gel well. Warrington will be aggressive but, in my opinion, Wood will win a quite close but deserved points decision. He’s that little bit less worn; the bit fresher of the two. Even though he has been in some wars, I feel like he hasn’t been in as many (as Warrington).
I thought Canelo vs. Charlo was a very disappointing fight. Most of that was Charlo’s fault. He was very negative. It looked like he was there to pick up the paycheck which I feel is almost a disrespectful thing to say.
Charlo was speaking before the fight about daring to be great. He didn’t dare anything in what was a dull fight.
You’d think being an undisputed champion at a couple of weights below, he would have had the desire to really go in there and try and win. The way he reacted afterwards, he was proud of that. That’s not how an undisputed champion would speak after a fight like that. When Canelo lost to (Dmitry) Bivol, he didn’t turn around and say, “Well, I lost, but I’m happy I didn’t get knocked out.”
Canelo’s older now, and he doesn’t throw his punches in the combinations he used to, but he still looked good and better than in his recent fights. It’s clear to see he’s not what he once was but is still a very good fighter, one of the best in the world pound-for-pound. Just not number one anymore. He’s still up there but his best days are behind him. It’ll be interesting to see who he fights next. There isn’t a lot out there. (David) Benavidez is the best fight for him and then they’ll look at the Bivol fight again, I guess. I know Bivol has stated he would like to come down to super-middleweight and box him there, so I think that would be really interesting and intriguing. Much more interesting than Canelo going back up to light-heavyweight and boxing him. If he did that again, it’d be a similar fight to the last one.
I’m really happy that (Tyson) Fury vs. (Oleksandr) Usyk is signed. It is a shame, however, that we’re at a stage where we say, “I’ll believe it when it happens.” I’m going to be positive. It’s a step forward. I just hope it isn’t a stunt to dampen the response to the (Francis) Ngannou fight. I’d like to think it isn’t.
In my opinion, Fury is the number one heavyweight in the world and Usyk is number two, but that is debatable. Thankfully, they’re getting in the ring.
There is a 0.01 per cent chance Fury will lose to Ngannou. The only way he does is if he goes in nonchalantly and gets caught with one. The only issue between the two fights being close together is the chance of injury to Fury. It used to be the norm that top-level fighters would fight every few months. Might be better for the fans it was like that but is it actually better for the fighter’s health and performance? That’s another argument.
It’s positive for the sport that it’s happening and fair play to both for figuring it out and putting the bullshit aside and agreeing to it. There’s nothing negative about it except the location, but what can you do? That’s the world we live in nowadays.