After Ryan Garcia’s statement win over Luke Campbell at the turn of the year, four young and talented fighters at the 135lb weight division are now trying to make their claim as the king of the division.
Garcia, or Kingry, gave his large social media following something to celebrate after a huge win over 2012 Olympic gold medalist Luke Campbell, climbing off of the canvas for the first time in his career in the second round to end up delivering a brutal body shot in the seventh, as he secured his status as one of the lightweight elite.
But there are three more young fighters in that division that like Garcia, all claim to be the best. So let’s take a look at his rivals.
Teofimo LopezEmbed from Getty Images
It’s hard to ignore Teofimo Lopez’s claim as the current leader of the pack when it comes to the lightweights, as after his surprising win against arguably the pound for pound king Vasyl Lomachenko, he became WBA, IBF AND WBO world champion and now one of the biggest names in the sport.
At just 23, a bright future lies ahead for the Brooklyn native and as there was no rematch clause in his contract for the Lomachenko fight, he was free to negotiate for whoever he pleased and chose to face his mandatory challenger in George Kambosas Jr. on June 19.
Gervonta DavisEmbed from Getty Images
Gervonta Davis, Floyd Mayweather’s protégé, has been known for years in the sport, and after his recent spectacular knockout victory against Leo Santa Cruz, he now may look to push on to more big fights.
It’s been a stop start career so far for Davis, but there’s no doubting his talent and at 26 he’s already become a two-weight world champion, but still the major lightweight belts elude him.
Davis has decided to take on a challenge in the division above however, as he takes on Mario Barrios for the WBA World Super Lightweight title in a decision that is typical of Davis so far in his boxing career.
Devin HaneyEmbed from Getty Images
Devin Haney has also taken some big steps for such a young man. At just 20 years old he became WBC world champion, the youngest in boxing, but that was met with criticism as he didn’t actually receive his title after a fight, but instead was elevated to champion after Lomachenko was made the WBC ‘franchise’ champion.
With all that being said however, he is still one of the world champions at lightweight and now at 22, he is set to take on former world champion Jorge Linares in a test to see if he is truly one of the best in the division.
We also can’t forget about Lomachenko however, and after he was unable to achieve a rematch against Lopez he is still aiming to win back his titles at lightweight and is still perhaps the most dangerous fight at the division.Embed from Getty Images
But as we look to the future of the division, these four fighters have had their share of calling the others out but promotional disagreements have meant that we still haven’t seen a match up between any of them.
Lopez, Davis and Haney are all tied up in different fights, with Garcia deciding to withdraw from his scheduled bout in July and take a break from the sport to focus on his health and well-being. Obviously Garcia’s mental health is of the most importance so when he feels he is ready to come back his fans would love to see him go all the way to winning a world title.
Let’s hope we can see these four exceptionally talented fighters fight each other one day and with all being under the age of 26, we can only hope the best is yet to come.