WBO super-lightweight king Josh Taylor will defend his world title against former unified lightweight world champion Teofimo Lopez this Saturday night.
The fight promises to be one of the highlights of the boxing year.
Taylor became the UK's first undisputed champion in the four-belt era when unifying the quartet of major 140lbs titles in 2021 and the Tartan Tornado is a high-octane and skilful boxer.
The Scot is a -210 chance to successfully defend his title, with Lopez a +160 shot to keep the belt in New York.
Here is everything you need to know ahead of the Madison Square Garden showdown.
|Josh Taylor vs. Teofimo Lopez
|Madison Square Garden, New York, New York
|Around 11 PM ET, Saturday, June 10th, 2023
|Josh Taylor -210, Teofimo Lopez +160
The fight will take place on Saturday, June 10th.
The main card is expected to kick off at around 10 PM ET and the feature event between Taylor and Lopez is likely to get underway at 11 PM ET, with the exact details depending on the duration of the undercard bouts.
The contest will take place at New York’s historic Madison Square Garden and that means home advantage for the Brooklyn-born Lopez.
The famous venue has played host to many of boxing’s most memorable moments and the Manhattan setting is synonymous with the sport.
Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier got it on twice at the Garden, while British hero Joe Calzaghe scored a unanimous-decision victory over Roy Jones at the historic venue.
Andy Ruiz Jr pulled off a huge surprise win when defeating Anthony Joshua at the Garden in 2019, while Katie Taylor and Amanda Serrano broke new ground in Manhattan more recently.
This marks the first occasion that Taylor has fought in the US since he unified the IBF, WBA, WBC and WBO 140lb titles against Jose Ramirez in 2021.
Taylor vs. Lopez will be shown live on ESPN+ in the United States.
Taylor is the -210 favorite, with Lopez rated a +160 shot.
Lopez is a former WBA, IBF and WBO lightweight world champion, while Taylor was previously the undisputed 140lbs king.
The Tartan Tornado currently has the WBO super-lightweight title in his possession and that belt will be up for grabs at Madison Square Garden.
Taylor is unbeaten in 19 professional contests and the Scot is a former undisputed super-lightweight world champion.
The Edinburgh fighter has previously held the Commonwealth super-light crown and there are many high-level victories on the Tartan Tornado’s card.
Taylor has beaten Viktor Postol, Regis Prograis, Ramirez and Jack Catterall, but the latest win over Catterall was a controversial victory.
Many believed that the Chorley man had the better of that Glasgow contest and Taylor’s performance in front of his home fans was more than a little flat.
However, Taylor was awarded the decision of the judges last year and he remains undefeated as a professional.
Lopez looked on course to becoming one of boxing’s star performers when beating Richard Commey to win the IBF world lightweight title and then unifying the division with a unanimous decision victory over the elite-level Vasiliy Lomachenko in 2020.
That moved the Takeover to 16 victories without defeat, but the Brooklyn boxer was blown off course when taking on George Kambosos Jr in 2021.
The Australian shocked Lopez, scoring a split-decision victory in New York and that raised question marks about the American.
The Takeover may have been looking past Kambosos Jr, and perhaps took the Aussie challenge a little lightly, but it’s a defeat on the card and low-key wins over Pedro Campa and Sandor Martin haven’t answered those questions.
The light-middleweight clash between Xander Zayas and Ronald Cruz will serve as the co-feature event.
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