It could be seen as quite ironic how Josh Taylor boxed better in defeat to Jack Catterall than the “Tartan Tornado” boxed when he defeated Catterall, controversially, back in February of 2022. The fight of two years ago saw a seemingly disinterested Taylor fighting a man he had largely overlooked and was not too concerned about. It resulted in a flat performance, one for which Taylor was lucky to have been rewarded with a victory.

Last night, all business and fully motivated, Taylor showed that at age 33 he has a lot left to offer. Taylor may not have won – although he said after the fight that he felt he had “nicked it,” and almost all of us saw the rematch as a close fight, far closer than the official judges had it – but the former undisputed 140 pound champ showed us there is still a good deal of fire burning in his belly.

The big question is, what next for Taylor, 19-2(13)?

There appear to be three likely options for Taylor: a rubber-match with Catterall, a move up to the welterweight division, retirement from the sport.

Catterall may well be as interested in a third fight as Taylor is, but first Catterall wants to try and become, finally, a world champion. There is already some talk of a possible Catterall challenge of Teofimo Lopez, who took the WBO belt from Taylor and now gets ready to defend it against Steve Claggett in June. If Catterall were to win a world title, either by defeating Teo or someone else, and if Taylor is still boxing, a trilogy fight between the two bitter British rivals would be huge over here.

But might Taylor, if he does fight on, decide he has pushed his body enough in making the 140 pound limit? For some time now, Taylor has talked about making the move up to 147, and maybe he will look back on last night’s fight and decide that the time is now. Only Taylor knows how he felt in there in the later rounds, only he knows how the effort at making weight took it out of him during the championship rounds. And there could be some good fights for Taylor at welterweight, some fun fights, either in the UK or in the US. Can Taylor become a two-weight world champion?

Or maybe Taylor, secure in the knowledge that he will go down as one of the greatest Scottish fighters ever, will call it a day, a career. Taylor peaked when he defeated Jose Ramirez to become the unified champion at 140 pounds, the May 2021 win seeing Taylor make history as the first British fighter to unify the titles in the four-belt era. Taylor might not be a lock for the Hall of Fame, but it is likely he will get in.

Taylor could call it quits and he would have nothing at all to be ashamed of. A superb amateur who won both a silver and a gold at the Commonwealth Games, this in 2010 and in 2014, Taylor has engaged in six world title fights, with him losing just one of them. Never stopped, Taylor has proven numerous times that he is a real warrior and it goes without saying that he has earned the right to do whatever he wants to do from here on in.

For what it’s worth, I think Taylor will want that third fight with Catterall badly, with him fighting on in an effort at getting it.

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