Prospect Spotlight: Teofimo Lopez
January 29, 2018
Anna Aguilar (131 articles)
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Prospect Spotlight: Teofimo Lopez

There’s a new hotspot in Las Vegas and that is one of Top Rank’s top prospects, Teofimo Lopez. The 20-year-old, undefeated lightweight, is looking to impress the boxing world once again on Saturday, February 3rd in his ESPN debut on the undercard of stablemate, Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez at the American Bank Arena in Corpus Christi, TX.

Born in Brooklyn, NY, Lopez made a career move last August to Las Vegas from Florida in order to limit his distractions as he makes his way up the ladder in the professionals. “I been in Florida for 14 years. I had too many distractions. I had to get out of there,” said the Honduran-American boxer. “Everything in boxing is in the west coast. Las Vegas is where it’s at, everything is better over here. I feel more conscious, more concentrated. Nobody can reach me unless I want them to reach me.”

After winning the Olympic trials, Lopez earned his spot on the 2016 U.S. Olympic team, however, due to amateur boxing politics that year, Lopez took to representing his parents’ home country of Honduras in the Rio Olympics. After the Olympics, Lopez became the third Olympian of that year to sign with Top Rank Promotions. He was 19-years-old at the time and made his first professional debut on the undercard of Manny Pacquiao versus Jessie Vargas in November 2016.

“They (Top Rank) told me if I want to fight, I’d fight my pro debut in Vegas on the undercard of Manny Pacquiao and Jessie Vargas, and then fighting at the Garden a couple times that year and the next year, and so on. That’s a lot of exposure to display my skills that God gave me,” said Lopez.

With many promoters grasping for a contract with Lopez, such as Lou DiBella Entertainment, PBC (Al Haymon), RocNation, Don King, Mayweather Promotions, Lopez felt it best to join the Top Rank family and feels it’s the best decision of his life.

Trained under the tutelage of his father, Teofimo Sr. since the age of six years old, Lopez now trains at Top Rank Boxing Gym or City Boxing Club, both in the lovely sin city. “My dad use to box,” Lopez said. “He only did it one time at the Golden Gloves in New York. He use to knock everybody out in the streets, so he said ‘let me try boxing’, and he was doing good. He decided to dedicate his life with me and my career.”

As a native of Brooklyn, the machismo confidence is clear, and Teofimo has backed it up in his young professional record of seven wins, no losses, and six knockouts. The kid showcases as if he holds more fights under his record and it’s safe to say a lot of it is because he came up through the USA Boxing amateur program, and is a six-time U.S. National Champion. He’s worked with world class fighters such as Guillermo Rigondeaux and Shawn Porter. Lopez’s talented skills have only progressed after each bout.

“If you look at my pro debut until now, it’s just different,” said Lopez. “I’ve developed a lot. I look more comfortable there at my pace, it’s just right. I’m so composed when I’m in the ring. I’m having fun. I’m getting stronger, every month, every day I’m getting stronger.”

There is still room to develop, and Lopez understands at his age, as long as he continues up the plateau, his strength and ability to conquer the squared-circle can only become better. The positive changes only excite him, and he’s anxious to find out, even for himself, what else is yet to come. First for the year, is facing a hard banger in John Delperdang at the American Bank Center Arena.

“For this fight, I’m getting into my first eight-rounder, so a lot of camp right now has been a lot of conditioning and stuff like that. Mentally and physically, I’m ready. That’s what we are preparing ourselves in camp. Not only to find our distance when we spar, but also to be physically and mentally ready and I feel like I have that,” said Lopez. “I don’t take none of my opponents lightly. Whether they have one and ten, undefeated, anything like that, I treat them all the same.”

The goal this year for the young buck is to be the talk of boxing. By doing that, he’s ready to take on the challenges of boxing and continue his winning streak. By the end of 2018 or the beginning of the next year, Lopez is determined to become the youngest champion in the Top Rank stable. “I guarantee I’d be world champion anywhere before 22-years-old,” said Lopez.

With the pace Top Rank has Lopez on, it’s possible his professional fights can double on his record by the end of the year. Lopez is already set to fight March 17th as well, against undefeated Will Madera of New York at the Madison Square Garden Theatre. That’s no worry for him, Lopez says he continues to stay ready by staying in the gym even if he isn’t fighting close dates. Close fight dates isn’t something new for Lopez. In his first professional year, he fought in February, March, April, May and July before he had a solid three month rest.

Teofimo isn’t looking too far ahead, he enters into fight week now and is looking to gain more fans with a win over Delperdang this Saturday.

“Coming this Saturday, February 3rd when I fight John Delperdang, I’m going to show the world and ESPN, everybody tuning in and people at the American Bank Center what I’m all about.”

For more updates on  Teofimo Lopez and to follow his boxing career, follow him on Instagram at @teofimolopez and on Twitter at @TeofimoLopez.

Photos By Mikey Williams for Top Rank Boxing. Highlighted reference from “Top Rank signs 19-year-old Olympian Teofimo Lopez” by Dan Rafael for ESPN. Interview and article conducted by Anna Aguilar for Supreme Boxing.
**Update: After article was published, Supreme Boxing was informed that John Delperdang has been replaced by another opponent for Teofimo Lopez.**

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Anna Aguilar