Home Boxing News Teofimo Lopez wants Bud Crawford next, but Bob Arum has different ideas

Teofimo Lopez wants Bud Crawford next, but Bob Arum has different ideas

Teofimo Lopez. Photo credit: Mikey Williams/Top Rank

Ring Magazine and WBO junior welterweight champion Teofimo Lopez 20-1 (13) is already thinking about other fights ahead of his title defence against Steve Claggett 38-7-2 (26) at the James L Knight Center in Miami Beach, Florida on Saturday night.

The number one name on his hit list is former two-weight undisputed champ Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford 40-0 (31), who will move up in weight against to challenge WBA junior middleweight champion Israil Madrimov 10-0-1 (7) at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles, California on August 3.

Brooklyn’s Lopez, 26, says he has seen signs of decline in Omaha, Nebraska’s Crawford and he wants to get his his chance to face the 36-year-old southpaw before it’s too late.

“Crawford is looking slower. I’d rather get him before he finishes. I’d rather get him before he really gets old,” Lopez said to FightHype.

“He’s getting slower. Look at the legs. I’m only 26. I’m just a baby. He’s 36. We’re ten years difference. This guy I’m facing, Steve Claggett, he’s 35 and this guy is a natural 147-pounder coming down to 140.

“I don’t understand why [Team Crawford] don’t want to make the fight happen. We already are [great]. We just want to see how much more greatness we can achieve. That’s what I thought boxing is. The best fighting the best.”

Lopez’s promoter Bob Arum isn’t as keen on the Crawford bout as his fighter is, warning him to focus on Canada’s Claggett first.

“We’ve had Lopez all of his career and I think there are a lot of big fights out there for him, but Claggett is not an easy fight for him,” the Top Rank boss said to FightHype.

“I think that would be a good fight [against Crawford] down the line, but the fight we make first is Teofimo against Brian Norman, who is the WBO welterweight at 147.

“I don’t know very much about Claggett. He’s a tough kid. He’ll give Lopez a really good fight. I think Lopez is one of the top fighters today.”

Lopez’s father and trainer Teofimo Lopez Sr said his son is currently in career-best form and he will show it on Saturday night.

“The amount of punishment my son is going to give this guy, he’s never seen nothing like it,” Lopez Sr said.

“We take all our fights serious and you’re going to see the best Teofimo Lopez. This is the best fight he’s ever had where he’s going to show all his skills.”

For his part, former unified lightweight champion Lopez says the best is still to come.

“I don’t want to say I’m in my prime yet. I think it’s too soon, I’m only 26,” Lopez said to Top Rank Boxing. “I think it’s way too soon to talk like that. I think I’ll hit my true prime at 28. We got like another year or so to see that come through.”