In the space of a few hours on Sunday, George Kambosos Jr. flipped the lightweight division on its head.
His opponent Teofimo Lopez was on top of the world, holding four lightweight titles having defeated future Hall of Famer Vasiliy Lomachenko in December last year.
But that was last year and now Lopez has come crashing down, with Kambosos the new king of the division and with it comes unprecedented possibilities.
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To truly appreciate the enormity of what Kambosos just achieved, you first have to understand how highly rated Lopez was in the boxing world.
That win over Lomachenko saw the then 23-year-old Lopez crowned the new lightweight king.
With it, Lopez became the youngest four-belt champion since the WBO was founded in 1988 and was considered one of the top pound-for-pound boxers in the world.
As The Athletic’s Greg Rosenstein wrote, it was not so much that Kambosos was a mystery in boxing circles.
“He was in this position for a reason,” Rosenstein wrote.
“But he hadn’t fought anyone at the level of Lopez and wasn’t expected to be able to handle what Lopez brought to the ring.
“Lopez, on paper, was expected to be the superior boxer in every category. At just 24, he’s one of the rising stars in boxing. He is coming off a win over Vasiliy Lomachenko, a pound-for-pound mainstay for years.
“This was expected to be a fight that he would cruise in. But not everything goes as planned.”
That much was clear when Kambosos scored a knockdown in the opening round.
ESPN’s Mike Coppinger described it as a “shocking fall from grace” for Lopez.
“Just 13 months ago, Lopez upset future Hall of Famer Vasiliy Lomachenko to claim four lightweight titles in a career-defining victory,” Coppinger wrote.
“The landmark win earned Lopez the No. 7 spot in ESPN’s pound-for-pound rankings and seemingly set him on the path to superstardom.
“Following a careerlong lay-off, a battle with COVID-19 and all the chaos that swirled around the rescheduled bout, Lopez appeared lethargic and tired over the final eight rounds.”
“What was meant as an opportunity for Lopez to regain momentum after 13 months out of the ring turned into disaster.”
Kambosos though, to his credit, took full advantage and deserves credit for putting Lopez off his game right from the start.
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Lopez was making plenty of noise post-fight, claiming he was the deserved winner while his father also went on to call the decision a “robbery”.
Kambosos though is the one making the real noise in the boxing world and it has him in “uncharted territory” according to Coppinger.
“No one gave him much of a chance to win,” Coppinger wrote.
“It was said he won the lottery after capturing a career-high purse that exceeded $1.5 million ($A2.1m).
“At least one more major payday will follow for the Australian in the star-studded lightweight division, and it could be more.”
As for what that next payday could look like, Kambosos is in the much-deserved position to dictate that himself.
“There’s no rematch clause, there’s no network attachments,” his promoter Lou DiBella said, per The Guardian.
“Right now George Kombosos is the king of the lightweight division. He’s going to take a little time off and enjoy the victory and we’re going to make the biggest fight we can make.”
That could very well be a blockbuster bout back here in Australia, where Kambosos is finally getting the attention he deserves.
“We do it again in Australia, 80,000 people, you and me brother,” he told Lopez.
“What a war we’d have. Let’s do it again.”
Lopez’s father though said post-fight there would be no rematch, with plans for the former champion to instead move up to 140 pounds with a shot at undisputed champion Josh Taylor.
Kambosos has plenty of options anyway, including the winner of next week’s fight between Devin Haney and Joseph Diaz Jr.
Eddie Hearn told IFL TV he is eager for Kambosos to fight WBC champion Haney back home in Australia.
“The obvious thing is to fight Devin Haney for all the belts. That’s the fight, but Devin has got to beat Jojo [Diaz Jr] next week,” Hearn said.
“You just had a situation there where the underdog [Kambosos] just won, so Devin has got to be switched on.
“I’d love to work with George [Kambosos] and take him [Haney] to Australia. That’s the dream. They come from Australia and beat Teofimo Lopez to win all the belts. It’s unbelievable.”
Gervonta Davis and Ryan Garcia are also realistic challengers for Kambosos but all that matters right now is that the offers will come for the Australian.
It is about time according to promoter DiBella.
“It’s great to recognise the talent when no one else recognises it,” he added.
“No one wanted George Kambosos. Peter Khan identified him. We talked about it, this Greek kid who lived in Australia that we thought had all this persona, all this confidence. We saw something.
“No one wanted him. And look where he is: the undisputed lightweight champion of the world. In a brilliant performance, one for the ages. And he has something he can be proud of for the rest of his life.”