Josesito Lopez says he's not worried about moving up in weight to face Canelo Alvarez. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
Josesito Lopez faces Canelo Alvarez on September 15 in a Showtime main event, and says he understands the concerns of those who think the fight could be a mismatch based on weight. But he also says that weight is not his main concern, but rather it's the fact that Canelo Alvarez is a good fighter.
"I don't blame anybody for questioning that. Their reasons for doing that are obvious. I've been fighting at 140 for most of my career. But the people in my camp and the people who know me, the members of my team, they know my potential. They know that the weight is the least of issues in my situation. The talent that Canelo has is a far bigger issue than his weight."
Lopez (30-4, 18 KO) got this fight as a result of his June 23 upset win over Victor Ortiz. Ortiz was scheduled to face Canelo had he won or even come out of that fight with a draw, but Lopez broke his jaw and won a great fight fair and square. The win left Golden Boy scrambling once again for an opponent for Canelo, and they went with Lopez.
This is a huge opportunity for Josesito, and as of a month out, he's at 166½ pounds, while Canelo (40-0-1, 29 KO) is just over 167. The fight will be for Alvarez's WBC junior middleweight title, with the standard 154-pound weight limit.
Still, it's impossible to not at least be concerned that this jump in weight is going to be too much for Josesito, and even though he's a good fighter, it might not mean much if he's physically overmatched here, which is a possibility. He is tall, but he doesn't have a junior middleweight frame. Even fighting Ortiz with a 147-pound limit, Lopez weighed in at 144¾, and was noticeably smaller than Ortiz. It didn't make the difference in that fight. But it could in this one.
Like he says, though, he and his team would know best. If they're confident, then that's good. And even if they do believe that it could be a problem, they wouldn't tell anyone that, and you certainly can't blame them for jumping at this chance. Lopez wasn't supposed to beat Ortiz, either. If he pulls the upset on Canelo, then Josesito Lopez might honestly be the Fighter of the Year, and he'd have money bouts waiting for him at 140, 147, or 154. I don't think this is a situation where Josesito really stands to lose anything. It's all upside for him.