When Welterweight contender Yordenis Ugas (23-4, 11 KOs) entered the ring against current WBC champion Shawn Porter earlier this year, he was viewed as having virtually no chance against the rugged champion.
After 12 hard rounds, Ugas came up short in his venture to become a world champion, but he gained respect as a fighter.
Porter did not steam roll over his opponent like many expected. Instead, it was Ugas who dictated most of the action and made Porter work for his victory. Ugas lost a close split decision to Porter that night, but he proved that he belonged.
On July 20 at the MGM grand in Las Vegas, Nevada, Ugas will have a stiff test standing across the ring from him in Omar Figueroa Jr. (28-0-1, 19 KOs) It’s the sort of fight that if Ugas wins and looks impressive while doing so, then it can vault him back into title contention.
Although Figueroa Jr. is undefeated, he isn’t exactly riding a wave of momentum. The Welterweight contender from Weslaco, Texas, has battled both inactivity and bad performances.
In 2016, he failed to enter the ring at any point. The following year he only managed to get into the ring just one time. In 2018, he could not carry any of that momentum as he took yet another year off.
This year, in his most recent bout against John Molina Jr. Figueroa, looked lethargic and disinterested. Some how he pulled off a close decision but many thought he deserved a loss for his performance.
With Ugas recently turning 33 years of age, and Figueroa Jr. at just 29, one fighter should be leaving his prime, Ugas, while the other should be entering his. Yet, that isn’t how this script is currently playing out.
These fighters seem to be heading in the total opposite direction. Be that as it may, neither man can afford to lose this fight. A win will propel said fighter to more than likely a title shot in their next fight.
The loser, on the other hand will head to the bottom of barrel. It will more than likely take them several years to emerge from it.