Former champion Nicholas Walters vows to become champion again following six-year hiatus

Nicholas Walters (28-1-1 22KOs), or the ‘Axe Man’ as he was referred to during his career, vanished following defeat to Vasiliy Lomachenko in 2016.

A frustrated and emotional Walters had been put through the matrix by the Ukrainian, who was at the peak of powers at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas. Lomachenko dodged, weaved, slipped and countered the efforts of Walters, who attempted to close down the Ukrainian and use his superior size and height. Ultimately, ‘Loma’ defended his WBO super-featherweight title with Walters quitting on his stool, and he was mocked and condemned by many in the sport.

That would have been the last we would see Walters. 

Then, one day last February, Walters reappeared, not via social media (which he remains inactive on X and Instagram) but via BoxRec, and Walters would return to the squared circle again, this time in Colombia, defeating Luis Diaz Marmol over eight rounds via unanimous decision. Ten months passed before Walters fought again, still in Colombia and this time scoring a second-round knockout over Reynaldo Esquivia in November. 

Now the former WBA super-featherweight champion, who boasts hard-hitting knockouts over former world champions Vic Darchinyan and Nonito Donaire, has vowed to become a world champion again. 

“My goal is to be world champion again and this new year will be an important one for me,” said Walters, speaking to the Jamaican Gleaner newspaper. “I returned to boxing last February after a six-year break, had two fights and won them. I am satisfied that I still have it in me, and I will be busy this year with another world title as my goal. I know I will do it again,” 

Walters is now training in Las Vegas and has linked up with manager Gabriel Barron and he could box on February 17 against unbeaten Canadian Lucas Bahdi (15-0, 13KOs). 

The Jamaican believes he has four good years remaining in the sport and that, at 37, he will likely box the remainder of his career at lightweight. 

“I had two warm-up fights to see for myself if I still have it, and I am convinced that I do,” Walters added. “From here forward, it will only be difficult opponents, as my aim is to get into the top-10 rankings since that is the only path to a world title fight… At age 37, I have at least four good years of boxing left in me, and all that I have to do now is to listen to my trainer, work hard and see what happens. I go into 2024 confidently, and I am sure that if everything falls into place, I will become a world champion again, for myself and Jamaica.”