Eight different dates, six venue changes, multiple lawsuits

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The “lopez vs kambosos cancelled” is a case of multiple lawsuits. There are eight different dates, six venue changes, and multiple lawsuits.

Eight different dates, six venue changes, multiple lawsuits

26 November 2023

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    ESPN’s Mike Coppinger

Teofimo Lopez bounced over the ropes, throwing his full body into either side of the ring before halting and completing a backflip in the middle. He then sat down on the mat and made a couple snow angels just for fun.

On that October evening in Las Vegas, Lopez had lots to be happy about. He not only dethroned pound-for-pound mainstay Vasiliy Lomachenko, but he also won the bout in stunning way.

At the time, the undisputed lightweight champion — the WBO, WBA, IBF, and WBC franchise champion — was looking forward to a transformational and eventful 2023. However, the exhilaration soon changed to frustration.

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When a boxer holds several championships, a rotation method is used to determine which sanctioning body’s No. 1 challenger gets his championship crack and when. Lopez (16-0, 12 KOs) faced Australia’s George Kambosos Jr., the IBF’s mandatory challenger, first. If Lopez defeats the big underdog, he might go on to a battle with WBC champion Devin Haney, emerging star Gervonta Davis, or perhaps social media phenomenon Ryan Garcia.

But this is boxing, a sport that defies even the most meticulous planning. Lopez’s fight with Kambosos (19-0, 10 KOs) was originally scheduled for May 29, almost seven months after he defeated Lomachenko. It’s been 400 days since Lopez first went into the ring. But, after eight date changes, the two will finally meet on Saturday at New York’s Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden (8 p.m. ET, DAZN).

“It just goes to show how strong I am,” Lopez, ESPN’s No. 1 lightweight, said of the extended wait. “The man above always has perfect timing.”

Everything you’d expect from a sweet science soap opera has happened on the way to Lopez-Kambosos: in-fighting between fighter and promoter, claims of misconduct from all parties involved, and, of course, lots of lawyers.


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Lopez and Top Rank ended up in a deadlock. A purse bid, in which the open market determined the value of Lopez vs. Kambosos, was one option for relief. When two promoters can’t come to an agreement, bouts usually go to public auction. But what about a boxer with his own promoter? This was unusual.

Before February’s purse offer, Arum remarked, “We analyze how much a fight is worth… and attempt to clinch the deal.” “We simply pass and let someone else do it if a fight is merely a fight and the asking [price] is considerably more than what we can pay.” The only way to avoid going out of business is to do so. You can’t keep following after her.

“After the struggle with [Kambosos], we have a 312 year contract. If [Matchroom] puts him on their platform, he returns to our platform, presumably with viewers from their platform who are now interested in him.”

The purse bid will take place on February 25th at the IBF headquarters in Springfield, New Jersey.

After Lopez’s career-changing moment against Lomachenko, Matchroom Boxing chairman Eddie Hearn told ESPN that he was stunned the bout had reached a purse bid. He was outspoken about his intention to bid on the fight, eventually outbidding Top Rank with a $3.506 million commitment. Top Rank made an offer of $2.315 million. But there was an unexpected third bidder: Triller, a newcomer to the combat game.

With the November 2023 exhibition between Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr., the TikTok competitor had a lot of financial success. With a startling offer of $6.018 million, it was now stepping into world championship boxing.

Ryan Kavanaugh, a boxing newcomer who earned a fortune as a Hollywood producer, was now in charge of Lopez’s career, at least for one bout.

After the fight, Kavanaugh, Triller’s co-owner, stated, “We want to demonstrate we’re taking the sport of boxing seriously and respecting boxing, we’re not trying to make a joke of it.” “That’s what this battle does for us.”

On April 16, hours before Jake Paul and Ben Askren would step on the scale ahead of Triller Fight Club’s second PPV, Lopez and Kambosos squared off for the first time during a press conference inside Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

It didn’t take long for things to get out of hand. Lopez took off his shirt and made threats at Kambosos. The challenger, too, pushed forward. The insults were flying thick and fast.

The competitors were separated by security on many times as they walked the huge stadium floor for the Paul-Askren fight the next day. The rivalry between a long-shot underdog with a fiery personality and a rising champion determined to demolish everything on his way to superstardom was palpable.

“I’m not attempting to assassinate George Kambosos Jr.; he has a family after all,” Lopez said. “But I have to complete the task at hand. I need to set the tone and tell everyone not to insult my family.”

Lopez and Kambosos wouldn’t have to wait long to lay their hands on each other after that bout: the fight was planned for June 5 in Miami, at the home of Major League Baseball’s Miami Marlins.

Triller had to change his plans after an apparently random choice by a boxing great. On June 6, Floyd Mayweather and Logan Paul had an exhibition on Showtime PPV, a rare Sunday boxing event. Triller changed the contest once again since two major personalities were slated to participate on the same weekend — and in the same place.

The date has been changed to June 19.

Kambosos is from Sydney, Australia, although he trained in Davie, Florida at Sweatbox Boxing Gym. When fight week arrived, Kambosos just had to drive around 25 miles to downtown Brickell, where the celebrations for his first championship battle would take place.

Triller Fight Club signs was up at the hotel, and the adjoining baseball park was also ready to go. Snoop Dogg, Meek Mill, and Lunay were among the acts scheduled to play at the bout.


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“We’re gunning for three bouts next year; that’s my deal,” Lopez added. “At 140, Devin [Haney], Josh Taylor, and Gervonta Davis. Why not, he fought at 140 pounds?”

A rematch with Lomachenko is one fight Lopez isn’t interested in. “There’s no need for it. I snatched all he had.”

In a week’s time, Haney will face Joseph Diaz Jr. in Las Vegas. Lopez is a logical opponent for the winner for a variety of reasons, the most important of which being the WBC’s current championship dispute.

Lopez has the “franchise” title in the organization, which is reserved for competitors with numerous titles. Haney has also won a WBC title. Despite the fact that Lopez is often regarded as the indisputable champion due to his four titles, Haney also has a genuine claim.

“I believe we make that fight right away if Devin defeats JoJo and [Lopez] wins,” Hearn stated. “I have a soft spot in my heart for Teofimo. Lomachenko was either the No. 1 or No. 2 pound-for-pound fighter in the world. He also defeated him. He had the potential to be a huge celebrity, but he lacked the necessary impetus.

“After that triumph, I believe he should be promoted as the face of boxing. And it’s not as if he’s uninteresting. He’s f—-ing thrilling, and he’s got a fantastic personality to boot.”

Teofimo Lopez has world championships in lightweight boxing from all four main sanctioning organizations. Triller/Al Bello/Getty Images

A battle with Taylor would also be the kind of significant match Lopez is looking for. Top Rank promotes the undisputed 140-pound champion, who will defend all four titles against Jack Catterall on ESPN+ on Feb. 26.

Saturday is the first step toward those major contests. At this point, even entering the ring is a victory in and of itself. Lopez, on the other hand, will need a win versus Kambosos.

“I had to go through all the sabotage and everything that occurred in my struggle to make me who I am right now,” he stated. “It only goes to demonstrate how strong I am, that’s what all of this has taught me.”

“This battle will only go one round because I want to teach them that they shouldn’t mess with me. Please let me know if I’ve lost steam by November 28.”

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The “teofimo lopez belts” is a professional boxer who has been making headlines over the past few months. He’s had 8 different dates, 6 venue changes, and multiple lawsuits.

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