Via Jake Tiernan: IBF featherweight champion Luis Alberto Lopez (28-2, 16 KOs) put in an impressive performance last Saturday night, defeating hometown boxer Michael Conlan (18-2, 9 KOs) by knockout. live in the fifth round at SSE Arena, Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Two-time Olympic athlete Conlan is as crafty as ever, trying to stay outside to avoid a torrent of bullets from Lopez, but he can’t stop him.
In the fifth round, Lopez knocked Conlan out with a well-timed right headbutt that finished him off. The corner Conlan threw on the towel, which is unnecessary as h won’t get up after that hit.
Lopez was still able to nail Conlan with massive headbutts from a distance with maximum force to injure him. Although Lopez, 29, missed a lot of his punches, he was undaunted and stopped throwing.
More importantly, Lopez didn’t diminish the power of his shots. He keeps throwing at 100% power so the hits he lands on deal damage to Conlan.
Options for Luis Lopez
- Leigh Wood: This fight didn’t happen because the newly crowned WBA featherweight champion said he wanted Josh Warrington next at the City Grounds in Nottingham. Wood’s promoter Hearn also mentioned wanting Warrington for him. There are some excellent fighters at 126 for Lopez to fight, but some of them, like Wood, won’t fight him. Eddie Hearn, who promote Wood, made it clear last Saturday night that they want Josh Warrington, someone Luis Alberto Lopez just beat. That shows you the respect Hearn has for Lopez. He wouldn’t dare throw Wood in with him and watch him lose to the talented Mexican boxer.
- Robeisy Ramírez: The best option for Luis Lopez to fight next would be WBO champion Robeisy Ramirez, a two-time Olympic gold medalist. It will be an uphill fight for Lopez as Robeisy is incredibly talented, hard to beat, and has absolute precision. There’s no one better at 126 than Robeisy right now, and that says a lot.
- Rey Vargas: 126 lb WBC champion Vargas is about to lose to O’Shaquie Foster in a failed attempt to claim the vacant 130 lb WBC belt.
- Josh Warrington: Lopez beat Warrington last December in a match where Josh should have been disqualified for a blatant foul he did during the stages after he became desperate.
- Nick ball
- Ruben’s Villa
- Isaac Dogboe
Lopez is too strong for Conlan
Carl Frampton: “I don’t think there are options. He puts you in a position you don’t want to be. It will be good for Mick [Conlan] Frampton said to BT sports boxing.
“When Mick is outside, this guy [Luis Alberto Lopez] in the center of the ring, rush in, jump in and cover [space].”
Steve Bunce: “You don’t win championships by being outside.”
Frampton: “This guy is an effective fighter in what he does. Mick landed some good hits here, but didn’t affect him at all. look at him [Lopez] face later. He has a mark under his eye. It was from a clash of heads. He is a tough man.
“Mick at various stages boxed brilliantly. Every time he does something good, this guy throws it back. Look at those photos. They are coming from the back of the room.”
Bunce: “Great upper cuts [from Lopez]top laning big lunging and top laning last [in round five] be great. Carl is right. He moves his feet and gets you to work. He’s making Mick hang out there, and the kid’s throwing.
“Compared to Mick there, kid [Lopez] was working at five percent, but he was making you work, tiring you out, catching and he fired a bloody shot. He fired some bloody shots, Lopez, but he didn’t flinch.
Frampton: “I said to Buncey after half-time, ‘This is going to be a tough night for Mick.’ I mean, after the second half, you’d think he’s played ten rounds already. His face is a mess.
“It was a really smart, beautiful shot [the fifth round uppercut from Lopez that knocked out Conlan], and it was a planned shot. He didn’t just throw it. He is a good fighter.”
Bunce: “That’s the key, what Carl said there. Don’t be fooled there by this guy [Lopez] Cross legs, big left toss, big right loop. Don’t be fooled by that. That shot is beautifully timed and exquisitely executed. It was a quality shot.
“Any of the best stylists in the world would be pleased to finish a guy with that look. Look, the other two Mexicans are above him and have a little more experience having competed against more world-class boxers. Just let those three play against each other in a round robin format.
“Who knows what we have with this? I have to be honest with you. This guy stunned me tonight because of how good he is. It’s a converted fighter.
Frampton: “You made the statement very early on. He’s a world champion, but he might not even be the best featherweight in Mexico. He can also be. He’s an excellent boxer, but he just shows you the conveyor belt of unbelievable boxers the country produces, especially in the lower weight class.
“The battle at Warrington is over. I have it a little wider than Ricky’s. Lopez played well in the early stages against Warrington, and then Warrington came back and won several innings. It was a close fight, but I feel Lopez definitely won it.
“Tonight it was an improved performance. I’m not saying that Mick is a better fighter than Josh Warrington. He’s a clumsier fighter, a tougher fighter than Josh Warrington, but this kid makes it easy.”
Bunce: “Josh Warrington is a great fighter, and that’s an excellent Josh Warrington, which makes it a really tight and close combat. If Mick Conlan hadn’t been caught with that headbutt, he’d probably have gone a few more rounds. Maybe you can find some momentum.
“We needed to exploit it, and Carl exploited it right away. Try to stay outside, use work, be slippery. That will never work for Lopez because he doesn’t do things the usual way.
“Sometimes, we treat the ‘unorthodox’ expression like the guy who can’t stand up. No, it just means he’s different.”