Can Pedro Campa bring out the true character of Brandun Lee?
On Saturday, rising junior welterweight prospect Brandun Lee will face his toughest opponent to date when he meets experienced Pedro Campa on the undercard of Sebastian Fundora-Brian Mendoza, at Dignity Health Sports Park, Carson, California.
Lee, who was The Ring Magazine “Prospect of The Year” in 2022, feels ready to step his game up against the experienced veteran.
“Pedro Campa is a very strong, durable Mexican fighter that I know is going to come to fight,” Lee (27-0, 23 knockouts) told The Ring. “Campa has only two defeats and one of the defeats is coming against [Teofimo Lopez] a former undisputed [champion]. He’s coming off a loss, so I know he’s going to be hungry and go out there to prove himself that he’s still a contender.”
The 23-year-old power-puncher doesn’t feel under pressure to better Lopez’s result against Campa.
“Not necessarily, every fight is different; styles make fights,” he said. “If the knockout comes, it comes. If I go all 10 rounds, I go all 10 rounds. I’ve already gone the distance in two out of the last four fights. If anything, it gives my audience more of a show, so I don’t mind.”
Last summer, Lee faced some adversity when he got off the canvas against Will Madera. The Californian, who had previously shown his power, proved there is more to him than just a punch when he recovered and out-boxed Madera to claim a wide, 10-round unanimous decision.
Although the knockdown wasn’t what Lee or his supporters wanted to see, he is taking a positive from the experience.
“It was an experience, This is boxing. We cannot expect to go out in the rain and not get wet. I’m going to get hit and I got dropped,” he said matter-of-factly. “Madera hit me with a clean shot and the way I was able to take a shot like that and bounce back, like, and still win all the remaining rounds, I think shows the true character of Brandun Lee.”
Lee is coming off stopping Argentine trialhorse Diego Gonzalo Luque (TKO 4) on the undercard of Gervonta Davis-Hector Luis Garcia in January.
“My last fight, my father just wanted me to shake off any cobwebs I may have gotten from the Madera fight, since that was my first time hitting the canvas,” he explained. “I went in there, did what I did, no competition. I told my dad [trainer Bobby Lee], ‘I’m done fighting these types of guys.’ For me, it’s disrespectful to me. It’s disrespectful to the fans. I really want a contender.”
And, to that mind, Lee feels Campa is a step in that direction.
“I think [victory] takes me to the top-10 guys,” he said. “I’ve been wanting those top-10, top-15 guys since after the Madera fight. I’m going to be 24 years old [in late April.] I’m becoming a man; I think the time is now. Really it’s do or die.”
However Lee stopped short of calling out anyone in particular.
“I really don’t care. At the end of the day, they all do the same thing. They throw punches; one may hit harder than the other but I hit just as hard,” he said. “When you get to that top level, that world championship level, if you put in the work, put in the grind, stay disciplined, stay dedicated for three months, may the best man win.”
Campa (34-2-1, 23 KOs) has been a professional since 2011. The hard-nosed Mexican reeled off 27 wins before surprisingly coming unstuck against Carlos Jimenez (L TKO 7). Since then, the 31-year-old Hermosillo resident won seven of eight, the lone blemish being a draw. His most notable victory came over previously unbeaten Carlos Sanchez (TKO 3). In his most recent fight, Campa stepped into the big leagues and was picked apart by former undisputed lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez (TKO 7).
Campa represents a step up for Lee and should give the younger man rounds before Lee gets to him in the later stages of the bout.
Fundora-Mendoza, plus supporting undercard, will be broadcast on Showtime at 10 pm ET/ 7 pm PT.
Questions and/or comments can be sent to Anson at [email protected] and you can follow him on Twitter @AnsonWainwright.