Lopez's conqueror Kambosos Jr backs 'focused' Taylor for victory

George Kambosos Jr expects the “focused” Josh Taylor to prevail against his former opponent Teofimo Lopez in New York.

Lopez’s career has stalled since he unexpectedly lost to Kambosos Jr in an undisputed lightweight title fight in the same city in 2021. Saturday’s fight at the theatre at Madison Square Garden with Taylor presents the 25-year-old with the opportunity to revive it, but Kambosos Jr, who recently joined both as Top Rank fighters, believes that Taylor has the “edge”.

There remain doubts over both fighters’ temperaments given Lopez has struggled to convince since so impressively defeating Vasyl Lomachenko in 2020 – and that Taylor was so fortunate to be awarded victory when outboxed by Jack Catterall in his past fight. 

The 32-year-old Taylor has, however, since replaced his then-trainer Ben Davison with Joe McNally, and instead of considering moving to welterweight appears more disciplined one year on.

Their WBO super lightweight title fight on Saturday is also on course to set a new gate record at the theatre at Madison Square Garden, and Kambosos Jr told ProBox TV: “I think it’s a very good fight. "Obviously an exciting fight for the 140lbs division. I think Taylor – seeing how he looks at the moment – looks very fit, very focused. I think Taylor’s gonna edge him. I think he’ll be able to box him at distance and be able to pick him off. 

“Look, Lopez is a good fighter no matter what – no matter the back and forth me and him have had. I think he’s a good fighter, and he can surprise a lot of people, but I think Taylor’s just got the edge on this. 

“He’s gonna be able to box him and catch him a lot more than what Lopez can catch. So, it’ll be interesting to see – a really good fight.”

Kambosos Jr was in Las Vegas for the controversial fight between Devin Haney and Lomachenko, ahead of the announcement of his date, on July 22, with Maxi Hughes in Shawnee, Oklahoma.

“I give Taylor the edge,” he continued. “But if Lopez can pull it off – I know he’s come out recently saying that he’s interested in a possible rematch with me. He didn’t sound too confident when he said it but let’s see what he does on Saturday night.”