Late 2021 Lightweight Champions

ATB: Combat Sports News
11 min readJan 5, 2022

By: Adam Rushton, Social Content Manager for AllTheBelts (twitter: @StraightStrikin instagram: @adamrushton21)

The new IBF, WBO, WBA, and Ring Magazine Lightweight Champion, George Kambosos Jr.

The Fall of 2021 was an electrifying time for professional boxing spectators. Across all divisions, and on multiple continents, the biggest promoters in the world have continued to bring us top-notch entertainment, even through times of uncertainty. While there have been numerous major happenings surrounding many weight classes as of late, in this entry we would like to single out four lightweight championship matches that took place in late November and December 2021. While these matchups shocked and entertained us as the end of the year approached, the results provided a backdrop for fights that could happen in 2022, and showcased some of the competitors who have contributed to the development of boxing in contemporary times.

Teofimo Lopez vs. George Kambosos Jr.

On November 27th the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden was packed with New York fight fans anticipating the ring walk of the Brooklyn born champion, Teofimo “The Takeover” Lopez. Back in town to defend his IBF, WBO, WBA, and Ring Magazine lightweight titles, of which he had taken from Vasyl Lomachenko in a dramatic unanimous decision back in October 2020, Lopez was extremely confident in his ability to defeat his Australian opponent, George “Ferocious” Kambosos Jr. In addition to being the home state crowd favorite, Teofimo also had the pleasure of being the betting favorite, and in turn painted Kambosos Jr. as the considerable underdog. Teofimo started the first round with an extremely aggressive approach, showing Kambosos no respect while head-hunting and looking for the big blow that would send his opponent down. George displayed excellent movement and played great defense to survive the early onslaught, while landing some solid punches of his own. What occurred next was the moment when everyone realized that the aggressive nature of Lopez’s early attack was the wrong plan when facing “Ferocious” Kambosos. After taking a few hard shots from Teofimo, George circled back to the center of the ring to avoid the corner. While Lopez followed and moved forward throwing a jab, the Australian challenger slipped to his left to avoid and delivered an overhand right directly to the temple, sending Teofimo angrily to the canvas…

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