Fighter Of The Week: Josh Taylor

Not nearly often enough do we get two undefeated champions, who are the two best fighters in the same weight class and both in their absolute primes, going head to head to find out who is the rightful king of the division. That’s exactly what fight fans were treated to on Saturday night in London at the O2 arena when WBA 140 Pound champ Regis “Rougarou” Prograis and IBF champ The Tartan Tornado Josh Taylor met up in the finals of the WBSS in one of the most anticipated fights of the year. A fight that was 50/50 entering the fight in the eyes of most experts. After 12 grueling and fairly even rounds it was The Tartan Tornado who prevailed with the majority decision victory capturing the Ali Trophy, Prograis’s WBA belt as well as our Fighter Of The Week award.

As rare as it is that we get two undefeated champions squaring off in their primes, even more rare do these fights live up to the hype they create. Saturdays scrap did just that. A fight that is certainly in the conversation for Fight of The Year and has placed Taylor in the conversation for fighter of the year. The bout started of evenly in the first two rounds , both fighters trading jabs and body shots t. However, It was Rougarou, that seized the momentum of the fight in round three. Prograis’s body shots started to take their toll on Taylor as Prograis was able to get on the inside and do some good work in the close range. Taylor has some good moments but in rounds three and four the American got the better of things. That all changed in round five as Taylor got back to jabbing and keep the shorter Prograis off of him. The momentum Rougarou built in rounds three and for four were gone as Taylor dominated five through seven and seemingly took control of the fight. By the eight Prograis tried to pick up the pace but it was of little avail. Taylor was able to counter the aggression with sharp straight left hands. One of which busted open the nose of Progrias. The ninth and tenth were simply more of the same. Realizing he was down on the cards the American stormed in during the last two rounds getting back to landing big right hooks and left hands on the inside. He probably got the better of Taylor in the last two stanzas but it was too little too late and the lead that Taylor built up was more than enough to secure him the 12 round majority decision.

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Giving that type of performance in that big of fight in front of a sold out crowd at the O2 arena has certainly established Taylor as a mega star in the sport as well as a top 10 pound for pound fighter in the world. The logical next step for Taylor would be to fight the divisions other unified champ Jose Carlo Ramirez, A fight that could happen in the first quarter of 2020. Ramirez called out the winner of the WBSS tournament and Taylor vocalized interest in a scrap with Ramirez for the undisputed title. Terence Crawford unified all four major belts in the division back in 2017. If a fight with Ramirez or a Progrias rematch can’t be made next, there will certainly be interest from all parties in having Taylor move up to welterweight and challenge for Crawford’s WBO title. Taylor has established himself as a superstar and has put himself in position where her can basically call his own shots and fight whoever he wants on other side of the Atlantic. Fortunately for Taylor and boxing fans there are plenty of attractive options at 140 and 147 that can be made in the near future.

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