WBO light welterweight champion Teofimo Lopez defends against #13 Steve Claggett (38-7-2, 26 KOs) on June 29th live on ESPN at the James L. Knight Center in Downtown Miami, Florida. The event begins at 10:00 p.m / 7:00 p.m. PT on ESPN and ESPN

You can argue that the 34-year-old Claggett is just a slight step above the journeyman level. With seven defeats and no real notable wins on his long 15-year resume, Claggett is a poor choice to be challenging for a world title.

Confidence Booster for Teofimo

This is another lackluster fight for the former unified lightweight champion Teofimo (20-1, 13 KOs), who is coming off a controversial 12 round unanimous decision over Jamaine Ortiz last February in Las Vegas.

Teofimo clearly lost that fight, giving a second controversial win in his last three outings, hurting his popularity even more than it already has after being beaten by George Kambosos Jr. in 2021.

Some might argue that Teofimo’s promoters at Top Rank match him against Claggett to keep him winning and artificially boost his nose-diving popularity.

By feeding Teofimo a lower-level fighter, his chances of winning and looking good are high, which will increase interest with casual boxing fans, who aren’t aware that Claggett isn’t highly rated and nowhere near the best at 140.

“This is like a Rocky Balboa story for Steve Claggett,” said Teofimo in essentially admitting that he’s facing a no-hoper ham & egger in a voluntary defense rather than facing one of the killers that could potentially dethrone him.

“There were no other fighters who were interested in fighting me, and I felt like he would give not just me, but the fans as well, a great fight to watch,” said Teofimo.

Teofimo is being disingenuous when he says “no other fighters” are interested in fighting him. There are a lot of contenders at 140 that would jump at the chance of fighting Teofimo if he and his promoters at Top Rank were willing to fight them.

Fighters wanting to fight against Teofimo:

Jamaine Ortiz
Keyshawn Davis
Richardson Hitchins
Gary Antuanne Russell
Arnold Barboza Jr.
Sandor Martin
Regis Prograis
Elvis Rodriguez
George Kambosos Jr.
Jose Ramirez

Teofimo appears to be washed up since his loss to Kambosos three years ago, and has failed to live up to the expectations that fans and the media had for him after his upset against injured Vasily Lomachenko in 2020.

Robeisy Ramirez vs. Brandon Leon Benitez

Former WBO featherweight champion Robeisy Ramirez (13-2, 8 KOs) will be taking a confidence-booster against little-known Brandon Leon Benitez (21-2, 9 KOs) in the 10-round chief support bout on the card.

The two-time Olympic gold medalist from Cuba, Robeisy, lost his WBO 126-lb title in his last fight against the lanky 6’1″ Rafael Espinoza by a 12 round majority decision last December in Pembroke Pines, Florida.

The height, reach and high work rate of Espinoza gave Robeisy huge problems. Robeisy had Espinoza down in the fifth, but let him off the hook by not going for the finish.

Espinoza then came on to dominate the later rounds, and drop Robeisy in the 12th round with a flurry of shots. After that beatdown, it’s understandable why Top Rank is matching Robeisy against a soft touch.

Still, he’s 30-years-old, has lost twice in his short five-year career, and can’t afford to be fighting tomato cans for long because he has more than enough experience as an amateur to bounce back against the best, provided he’s not facing someone as tall as the 6’1″ Espinoza.

To beat a guy like that, Robeisy would need to sit down more on his shots because his amateur style of throwing single pot shots failed to work against this volume puncher.

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