Kambosos Jr. vs Hughes – ESPN – July 22 – 10 pm ET
George Kambosos Jr.- Maxi Hughes and Keyshawn Davis-Francesco Patera Lightweight Doubleheader Confirmed for July 22 at FireLake Arena LIVE on ESPN
Former unified and lineal lightweight world champion George Kambosos Jr. makes his Top Rank debut in a 12-round IBF world title eliminator against English southpaw Maxi Hughes on Saturday, July 22, at FireLake Arena in Shawnee, Oklahoma.
Keyshawn Davis takes a major leap up in competition against Belgian contender and ex-European champion Francesco Patera.
KAMBOSOS JR VS. HUGHES START TIME
- Date: Saturday, July 22
- Time: 10 p.m. ET / 3 a.m. BST
- Main event ringwalks (approx): 11:30 p.m. ET / 4:30 a.m. BST
- The fight will take place at FireLake Arena in Shawnee, Oklahoma.
- The fight will be broadcast live on ESPN+ in the U.S.
“George Kambosos Jr. is still one of the main attractions in the lightweight division, and with a win over the underdog, Maxi Hughes, he has the opportunity to return to title contention,” said Bob Arum, Chairman of Top Rank. “Keyshawn Davis is already a contender in less than 10 fights, showing signs of a future superstar. This lightweight doubleheader is fantastic for fans in Shawnee and all those watching on ESPN.”
“George insisted on a significant fight to start his comeback. He’s never taken the easy path,” said Lou DiBella, President of DiBella Entertainment. “Maxi Hughes is a top 10 lightweight and poses a high risk for George, coming off two losses against Devin Haney. This will be an IBF world title elimination bout, and George will also contest for Maxi’s IBO lightweight world title. For Maxi, this is the opportunity he’s been striving for. This is his chance to show that all those underdog victories mattered.”
Kambosos is a 10-year pro who has travelled from Malaysia to Greece, London, New York City, Connecticut, and Las Vegas in his quest to conquer the lightweight division. His wins over former world champions Mickey Bey and Lee Selby led to a world title shot against Teofimo Lopez in 2021. In what was named ESPN’s Upset of the Year, Kambosos defeated Lopez via split decision, seizing three lightweight world titles. In 2022, the 29-year-old Australian bypassed an easy hometown defense, instead choosing to face Devin Haney in back-to-back undisputed world title battles in Melbourne. After experiencing his first career losses, Kambosos aims to reclaim his throne, with Hughes being his first challenge.
“I’m extremely excited and motivated to make a powerful statement against Maxi Hughes in my comeback fight in the United States, the heart of boxing, live on ESPN and Main Event PPV in Australia,” said Kambosos. “Having fought the best in the lightweight division, I know I’ve become an even better fighter, adding more tools to my arsenal. Maxi Hughes is a solid boxer, a tough Englishman, but I know, and he knows, that his best won’t be enough. Hughes is not elite, and having been in the ring with elite boxers like I have, I spot the mistakes in a boxer like Hughes. I will seize his IBO world title and the position of IBF world title eliminator on July 22.”
Hughes (26-5-2, 5 KOs), a 33-year-old UK veteran, turned pro in 2010. He won his first British title by defeating Ryan Moorhead in 2017. He suffered a stoppage loss to Sam Bowen in 2018 in his second attempt at the British title, but he rebounded the following year, handing Kieron McLaren his first career loss. He hasn’t lost since a November 2019 bout for the WBO European title against Liam Walsh, winning all seven of his subsequent fights, including a 10-round decision victory over then-undefeated Kazakh standout Viktor Kotochigov in 2020. Hughes is coming off a 12-round majority decision win over ex-world champion Kid Galahad last September.
“I’m excited to realize my dream of fighting in the USA and to showcase my skills to a new audience,” said Hughes. “I’ll do what’s necessary to get the win.”
Davis (8-0, 6 KOs), from Norfolk, Virginia, won three professional fights before capturing a silver medal at the Tokyo Olympics. In November 2021, he signed a long-term promotional contract with Top Rank, and since then, he has secured five victories, including brutal knockouts against Esteban Sanchez and Omar Tienda. In his latest bout, the 24-year-old Davis overwhelmed and defeated Anthony Yigit via a ninth-round TKO. He looks to continue his swift rise in the lightweight division against his toughest opponent yet, Patera.
“I’m among all the top lightweights, and Patera is the next one in my path. Just like the eight opponents before him, Patera will have no solution for what I’m bringing to the table,” stated Davis. “This is going to be a harsh night for him, however long it lasts.”
Patera (28-3, 10 KOs), an eight-year Belgian pro, made his first attempt at the European title in May 2016, losing a unanimous decision to Yvan Mendy. He bounced back later that year with a TKO victory over Csaba Bolcskei in September before suffering a close decision loss to Sean Dodd the following month. Patera then notched wins over Pasquale Di Silvio and Edis Tatli before losing a rematch to Tatli in December 2017. Since then, the 30-year-old has won 10 consecutive fights, coming off a first-round knockout against Irakli Shariashvili in April.
“I’m coming to Shawnee to deliver a spectacular performance, defeat Keyshawn Davis, and demonstrate that I belong on the world stage,” Patera stated.
The undercard on ESPN+ will feature the ring returns of welterweight contender Giovani Santillan, Oklahoma-born heavyweight Jeremiah Milton, and middleweight prospect Troy Isley.
Santillan (30-0, 16 KOs) will face Ecuadorian contender Erick Bone (27-6, 14 KOs) in a 10-round welterweight battle. Santillan is coming off his best year as a pro, stopping Jeovanis Barraza in April 2022 before a hometown win over Julio Luna Avila in San Diego last August. Bone is a seasoned veteran who has given tough challenges to former world champions Shawn Porter, Chris Algieri, Miguel Vazquez, and Sergey Lipinets.
Two competitive eight-round heavyweight matchups will also be featured on the ESPN+-streamed portion.
American contender Mike Balogun (20-1, 16 KOs) will collide against New Zealand’s Hemi Ahio (20-1, 15 KOs). Balogun, a former Oklahoma University linebacker, is bouncing back from a loss to ex-cruiserweight world champion Murat Gassiev, while Ahio knocked out Richie Stanley in the first round in February.
Undefeated Cleveland southHines, who is trained by Charles Conwell’s trainer O’Shaquie Foster, is coming off a second-round knockout of Allen Crowder in May. Pirotton, who is managed by the same team as Francesco Patera, scored a first-round stoppage of Viktor Vykhryst in April.
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GEORGE KAMBOSOS JR – MAXI HUGHES FIGHT CARD
- George Kambosos Jr vs. Maxi Hughes; Lightweight
- Keyshawn Davis vs. Francesco Patera; Lightweight
- Giovani Santillan vs. Erick Bone; Welterweight
- Mike Balogun vs. Hemo Ahio; Heavyweight
- Roney Hines vs. Michael Pirotton; Heavyweight
- Troy Isley vs. TBA; Middleweight
- Jeremiah Milton vs. TBA; Heavyweight