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George Kambosos Jr. says beating Lopez will make him the greatest Australian fighter ever

George Kambosos Jr. on ropes (Photo courtesy of George Kambosos Jr.)
27
Feb

George Kambosos Jr. has worked his whole life for this opportunity.

The 27-year-old from Sydney, Australia is set to face lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez for a career high payday after yesterday’s astonishing $6.018 million purse bid from boxing’s newest promotional entity Triller.

With Lopez, holder of the Ring Magazine, WBA, IBF and WBO world titles, getting 65% of the purse with 35% going to Kambosos, the Sydneysider will walk away with a substantial amount of money but that’s not the only thing he’s gunning for.

“Obviously, this fight changes my life dramatically,” Kambosos (19-0, 10 knockouts) told The Ring.

“I win this fight, and I will, and I have to go down as the greatest fighter ever from Australia. No disrespect to Jeff Fenech or Lionel Rose but what I have done before this fight and then to go out and win every single belt is massive.

“I become a global superstar and obviously the money will be huge but I’m not fighting for the money. A lot of people are hitting me up today saying wow, the money you’re going to make but I pretty much told them fuck the money, I want them belts.”

Kambosos Jr. (right) opens up on Lee Selby.
Photo by Dave Thompson

Kambosos lands his big shot as the mandatory challenger to Lopez’s IBF title and despite not having the same profile as many of his contemporaries in the 135-pound division, his recent run of victories have come against solid opposition. His successive victories over Mickey Bey and Lee Selby have both come outside of his native Australia, proving he has little fear of fighting overseas.

“I’ve been overseas, I’ve gone over and proved it,” said Kambosos, The Ring’s No. 8-rated lightweight.

“I’ve beaten former world champions in their own backyard; this is nothing new for me. I know what it’s like to be at that top level and beat these (former) champions. I’ve been in with legendary fighters in sparring and been all over the world in boxing gyms. I’m ready, this is my time and I truly believe that styles make fights and I’m gonna beat this kid.”

Beating Lopez would undoubtedly bring Kambosos the kind of profile that few in the sport have and he is happy that his big opportunity is being promoted by boxing’s newest broadcast entity, Triller. The Australian happy to be a part of history for the emerging company. 

“They’re (Triller) a game changer,” he says. 

“They shocked the world today. You saw the production for Tyson-Jones, they have a massive global influence with rap artists and big names in the world of entertainment and they’re really making boxing part of the entertainment business. I’m excited that this will be their first big marquee world title fight and this is history. You see why they came in heavy because you can see how big this fight can be.”

Confidence abounds when Kambosos speaks. He backs himself and truly believes he will win this fight but he’s also aware that not everyone shares the same view. From his early days as a professional he’s had to beat the odds and through this unbridled confidence and a work ethic that is second to none, Kambosos plans on proving his naysayers wrong once more. 

“They’ve been saying the same thing since I fought Robert Toomey all those years ago,” Kambosos says of his 2014 fight where he won the Australian title.

“They said the same thing when I fought [Brandon] Ogilvie and [Qamil] Balla and when I was going over to the U.S they said I wouldn’t win a fight over there. I’m still standing and I’m still undefeated so whatever people say, let them doubt me. I love that underdog mentality and again I go into another fight as an underdog but what are they going to say when I beat the supposed hottest fighter in the world at the moment? Where does that put me on the pound-for-pound list in the world?”