Newly crowned unified lightweight champion George Kambosos Jr has revealed that he purposely lured Teofimo Lopez into an emotional fight on his way to a thrilling world championship.
Australia’s Kambosos had a stunning decisive win over much-loved Lopez in New York on Saturday.
Lopez flew out of the box in the opening round, looking to fulfill his promise to beat the Kambosos early by knockout, but it was Aussie who knocked the game down in the first half.
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Speaking on Sunday, Kambosos said the counter-actions he and his team took during the lead-up were all part of the plan.
“We knew he was going to shoot and it was a lot of mind games, to make him angry, to make him angry and I knew he was going to go crazy and I just kept calm, kept calm. , caught his shots, but knew the power wouldn’t make me sad,” Kambosos told Matchroom.
“I know he made that mistake when he came in a little too heavy and I stacked him with a beautiful right arm and caught him clean, put him down and the fight changed.”
After taking the first round, the Kambosos seemed to have the upper hand in the early and mid stages of the fight, but Lopez rallied for a showdown before knocking himself out in the 10th round.
Lopez surged forward to try to end the fight but the Kambosos rang the bell, before appearing strong in the final two innings to seal the victory.
Kambosos talks about the moment of Round 10.
“I think I got a little too excited with the crowd and I felt like I was going to run past him and actually get him into the sword. It was a good learning curve as well. I was a bit emotional. action at that stage.
“I think when he knocked me down in the 10th round and tried to finish me off, I got up and still punched and I was still there, I think that destroyed his mentality.
“He thought, ‘This guy’s not going. What is he doing?” I knew it was going to blow him away so I went out and Round 11 was probably my best round and Round 12 closed the show. “
The match lifted Kambosos’ record to 20-0, while Lopez (16-1) had to taste defeat for the first time in his career.
In the ring shortly after the decision, Lopez said he felt he won in the 10th to the second half.
“I don’t have to respond to that, it’s delusional,” Kambosos said.
“He’ll look back on it and think, ‘I was wrong there’ because he lost a lot of fans from doing that.”
As for what’s next for Australia’s first unified champion since Kostya Tszyu, the Kambosos plan to take part in the Devin Haney-JoJo Diaz match in Las Vegas next week before an undisputed match on the court. home next year.
“One hundred percent, but that has to be in Australia,” he said.
“I’ve been on the hard road, I’ve been in the trenches abroad, I’ve got everything now. If they want to shoot, they have to come see me.”