TEOFIMO LOPEZ – ‘The Takeover’

Report: 16-0 (12). Age: 23. From: USA.

WHY HE IS ON THE LIST:
Lopez lived as much as his nickname by taking on the light-weight division three months in the past. Up in opposition to Vasiliy Lomachenko in a conflict for the undisputed crown at 135lbs, Lopez produced a show of prowess and maturity that belied his youthful age. By beating a person who stepping into was thought of by some as the highest pound-for-pound fighter within the sport, Lopez introduced himself because the king of the lightweights. He was a worthy winner of Boxing InformationFighter of the Yr award for 2020.

BEST PUNCH:
Though the lead left hook is a specific favorite of Lopez’s, his most potent strike is the suitable hand down the center. Thrown with punishing energy and unerring precision to both the top or physique, it’s a debilitating punch – simply ask the likes of Richard Commey, Edis Tatli and Mason Menard.

STANDOUT VICTORY:
Clearly his star-making conquer Lomachenko. There weren’t many individuals on the market who have been selecting Lopez beforehand, however the underdog proved his credentials with an elite-level efficiency. By beginning quick, combating aggressively and displaying Lomachenko no respect, Lopez stifled his famend rival’s rhythm. His intelligent tactic to regularly goal the midsection was one of many key causes for his unanimous factors win.

X FACTOR:
Not a lot one attribute however moderately a mixture of varied qualities. Lopez’s all-round attacking recreation is exemplary. Energy, pace, accuracy, poise and flexibility are simply a few of the strings to his bow.

WHO HE SHOULD FIGHT NEXT:
After defeating Lomachenko, prevailing in opposition to Gervonta Davis would offer Lopez with one other pound-for-pound scalp. A gathering between these two gifted, power-punching aces would set pulses racing. It’s undoubtedly among the best bouts that may be made in boxing.

VASILIY LOMACHENKO – ‘Loma

Report: 14-2 (10). Age: 32. From: Ukraine.

WHY HE IS ON THE LIST:
A fistic genius and one of many best beginner boxers of all time, Lomachenko had near 400 contests within the unpaid ranks, shedding simply as soon as. After garnering gold medals on the Olympic Video games (twice), World Championships (twice) and European Championships, the chic southpaw claimed WBO featherweight honours in solely his third skilled outing. The WBO super-featherweight title adopted in battle quantity seven, with the WBA light-weight belt arriving after 12 bouts. The WBC and WBO straps have been added to his assortment at 135lbs, earlier than Teofimo Lopez got here and took his titles.

BEST PUNCH:
Lomachenko pumps out rapid-fire jabs from an assortment of angles. Consistently feinting and making use of his wonderful footwork, opponents wrestle to see the place the following stiff, tormenting proper hand goes to come back from.

STANDOUT VICTORY:
Gary Russell Jnr and Guillermo Rigondeaux are two of Lomachenko’s most high-profile victims. Each boxers have been unbeaten on the time, and neither has misplaced since. Nonetheless, his 10th-round stoppage of Jorge Linares in Could 2018 significantly stands out, because it occurred up at light-weight, whereas the Russell and Rigondeaux fights have been contested at featherweight and super-feather respectively – divisions that are extra suited to Lomachenko’s pure measurement.

X FACTOR:
Lomachenko’s technical wizardry is his biggest energy. His motion and total ring IQ is outstanding.

WHO HE SHOULD FIGHT NEXT:
Avenging his shock defeat to Lopez is the first activity on Lomachenko’s to-do listing. There have been indicators within the second half of the bout that he was starting to familiarize yourself with Lopez considerably, which is why a rematch can be fascinating.

Vasiliy Lomachenko

GERVONTA DAVIS – ‘Tank

Report: 24-0 (23). Age: 26. From: USA.

WHY HE IS ON THE LIST:
As his most up-to-date matchup – in opposition to Leo Santa Cruz in October – was fought on the 130lb restrict, Davis is ranked at super-featherweight in Boxing Information’ official world rankings. Nonetheless, as Davis’ spurious WBA secondary light-weight strap was on the road on this contest, along with Santa Cruz’s WBA super-feather crown, he nonetheless has one foot within the 135lb division. Dimension-wise, light-weight is a extra comfy match for the stocky southpaw, so his future is more likely to lie on this weight class.

BEST PUNCH:
How will you look previous his deadly left uppercut? Davis took residence Boxing Information’ 2020 Knockout of the Yr prize because of the exceptional end he supplied in opposition to Santa Cruz. After slipping a proper hand thrown by Santa Cruz within the nook, Davis pivoted to his left and uncorked a sensational uppercut from his backhand. The gorgeous shot eliminated Santa Cruz from his senses and led the referee to right away terminate proceedings in bout six.

STANDOUT VICTORY:
Santa Cruz was a four-weight world titlist who had solely tasted defeat as soon as earlier than, but Davis made an enormous assertion by storming previous his revered rival in devastating vogue. The win catapulted the three-time world super-featherweight champ into the pound-for-pound high 10.

X FACTOR:
The explosive, game-changing energy that Davis possesses is his most formidable high quality. All however considered one of his adversaries have been overwhelmed inside the space, leading to a daunting 96 per cent KO ratio.

WHO HE SHOULD FIGHT NEXT:
It must be Teofimo Lopez. There was speak of the light-weight chief doubtlessly transferring as much as the super-lightweight class, however hopefully not earlier than he shares a hoop with Davis. It’s a battle that boxing wants.

Gervonta Davis

RYAN GARCIA – ‘King Ry

Report: 21-0 (18). Age: 22. From: USA.

WHY HE IS ON THE LIST:
Garcia is the newest fighter to affix the present band of light-weight luminaries. The rangy puncher boasts an enormous following on social media, however in opposition to Luke Campbell earlier this month, he proved that there’s substance behind the hype. After being knocked down within the second bout, the colourful Garcia regained his composure and proceeded to bombard Campbell with heavy blows from each gloves, finally resulting in a breakout seventh-session stoppage victory.

BEST PUNCH:
Garcia’s honey punch is his left hook. Unleashed both upstairs or down, it’s hurled with an correct and punishing drive. Campbell was despatched to his knees after catching one clear within the ribs, whereas Francisco Fonseca and Romero Duno have been each caught chilly with slamming photographs to the top.

STANDOUT VICTORY:
Conquering Campbell was an vital accomplishment for Garcia. The win marked the second that the touted expertise went from thrilling prospect to severe contender. He handled the strain impressively.

X FACTOR:
The factor that units Garcia aside from his friends is his crossover reputation and immense marketability. Together with his film-star options, confidence and charisma, the Instagram favorite is a promoter’s dream. Crucially, he has to this point been capable of again up the social media ‘likes’ with performances within the ring – the place the place it actually issues.

WHO HE SHOULD FIGHT NEXT:
Of the 5 fighters on this listing, Garcia and Devin Haney are the youngest at 22 years previous. They’re every a rung beneath the extra established Teofimo Lopez, Vasiliy Lomachenko and Gervonta Davis on the boxing ladder, so it is sensible for the 2 precocious hotshots to face off in opposition to each other, earlier than stepping as much as the following stage.

Ryan Garcia lightweight

DEVIN HANEY – ‘The Dream

Report: 25-0 (15). Age: 22. From: USA.

WHY HE IS ON THE LIST:
Flawless as far as a professional, Haney has steadily ascended the light-weight rankings, one dominant victory at a time. Whether or not profitable inside schedule or succeeding convincingly over the lengthy route, the lightning-quick prodigy has showcased his plain talent. He holds a model of the WBC championship at 135lbs, though Teofimo Lopez owns the organisation’s true title (regardless of its absurd ‘Franchise’ label).

BEST PUNCH:
For a fighter nonetheless so younger, the variability that Haney possesses is extraordinarily spectacular. Of the big selection of weapons that make up his arsenal, essentially the most useful and persistently efficient is his prolonged jab. Thrust out at a blistering tempo, it softens his opposition up and leaves them inclined to vicious follow-up hooks. The stinging rangefinder is commonly the muse on which Haney’s rattling combos are shaped.

STANDOUT VICTORY:
Yuriorkis Gamboa is certainly the premier title on his report, however Haney’s most dazzling show to this point got here in opposition to the beforehand undefeated Zaur Abdullaev in September 2019. Haney wanted simply 4 rounds to completely thrash Abdullaev and drive him out of the battle.

X FACTOR:
Haney’s hand pace is one thing else. Even when up in opposition to aggressive opponents who press ahead, he is ready to stay unperturbed because of his scintillating swiftness. As a rule, his foes discover themselves swallowing punches that they haven’t even seen coming, and as they are saying, it’s the punch that you don’t see coming that’s the most harmful.

WHO HE SHOULD FIGHT NEXT:
A showdown between Haney and Ryan Garcia would symbolize a mouth-watering mixture of strengths and types – Haney together with his pace and Garcia together with his energy. Having met a number of occasions as amateurs, they’re completely positioned to resume hostilities as professionals.

Devin Haney

THE OTHERS
These six fighters are ones to be careful for

Shakur Stevenson
A former WBO featherweight boss, the excellent Stevenson moved as much as super-featherweight final 12 months and has his sights set on claiming world honours there. His subsequent cease after this might logically be light-weight.

George Kambosos Jnr
Tenacious and decided, Kambosos [below] overcame Lee Selby in an IBF ultimate eliminator to place himself in prime place to problem Teofimo Lopez. Not missing in self-belief, he would little question be assured of inflicting an upset.

Masayoshi Nakatani
An all-action aggressor, the lengthy and lean Nakatani is coming off an exciting, come-from-behind victory over Felix Verdejo. The entertaining slugger additionally gave a great account of himself when opposing Teofimo Lopez.

Gary Russell Jnr
Russell is an actual wildcard, contemplating he has spent all of his profession as a featherweight to this point. The long-time WBC 126lb champion has made no secret of his need to leap up two divisions and take a look at himself at light-weight.

Denys Berinchyk
Following a profitable stint within the amateurs, the place he medalled on the Olympics and the Worlds, Berinchyk entered the professional ranks and has since superior to the fringes of world stage. Can he now make that subsequent step?

Michel Rivera
Rivera is but to contest a 12-rounder however he’s nonetheless brimming with potential. Now showcasing his skills in America, he has defeated Fidel Maldonado Jnr and Ladarius Miller in his two most up-to-date appearances.

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