Hank Lundy is coming home and he cannot wait.
The 33-year-old world-class lightweight makes his first start in Philadelphia in nearly eight years when he takes on Ricardo Lara, of Jalisco, Mexico, in the eight-round main event Friday evening, June 2, at the 2300 Arena in South Philadelphia.
This will be Lundy’s first fight at the 2300 Arena, located in his backyard, and only his seventh hometown appearance since he turned professional 11 years ago.
Since leaving Philly to fight after 2009, Lundy has appeared in rings in Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Indiana, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Ohio, New York and California as well as Canada and the Ukraine.
A former North American Boxing Federation (NABF) and North American Boxing Organization (NABO) lightweight champion, Lundy boxed just twice in 2016. He challenged Terrance Crawford, of Omaha, NE, for the World Boxing Organization (WBO) world junior lightweight title, but was stopped after five exciting rounds in Madison Square Garden. He bounced back late in the year in Cincinnati, OH, to earn a 12-round decision over John Delperdang, of Escondido, CA, to raise his pro record 27-6-1, 13 K0s.
Lundy has beaten David Diaz, of Chicago, IL; Patrick Lopez, of Venezuela, and Tyrese Hendrix, of Gainesville, FL. His setbacks have come against the best at 135 and 140 pounds—John Molina, of Covina, CA; Viktor Postol, of the Ukraine; Mauricio Herrera, of Riverside, CA; Raymond Beltran, of Phoenix, AZ; Thomas Dulorme, of Catalina, Puerto Rico—but Lundy vows to get his career back on track to another world-title opportunity.
“It’s a good feeling (fighting at home),” Lundy said. “At the end of the day, I have to train a little bit harder than I generally trained before coming home fighting in front of some of my fans and family.
“It sort of is added pressure, but I’m a vet in the game now and I know how to deal with that pressure. Also, you have to train a little harder because one thing people don’t know, when you fight in front of your hometown there’s a little more you have to put out. Actually, my camp started a little early just to deal with that problem.”
Lara, 25, will be making his first start outside of his native Mexico, where he compiled a 15-3 record, 7 K0s.
Some of the area’s top prospects will make up the undercard, including junior middleweight Isaiah Wise, welterweight Marcel Rivers, junior welterweight Scott Kelleher, lightweight Victor Padilla and featherweight Crystian Peguero.