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Maurice Hooker signs with PBC, could debut against Josesito Lopez

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Hooker’s planned fight with Regis Prograis fell through over weight

Maurice Hooker v Alex Saucedo Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images

Maurice Hooker’s weight class isn’t the only thing changing.

The Athletic’s Mike Coppinger reports that the former super lightweight champion has left the Matchroom and Roc Nation stables in favor of signing a “multi-fight” deal with PBC ahead of his welterweight debut. Errol Spence Jr. chimed in to confirm that Hooker would debut alongside his November 21st battle with Danny Garcia, with Coppinger adding that a clash with Josesito Lopez is “being explored.”

As others have pointed out, this looks like a good career move for Hooker (27-1-3, 18 KO). Outside of Terence Crawford, Al Haymon and co. have a virtual monopoly on the 147-pound elite, including Spence, Garcia, Keith Thurman, Shawn Porter, Yordenis Ugas, Jamal James, Manny Pacquiao, and Jessie Vargas. Hooker could easily find himself in a title fight after just a few victories.

Lopez (37-8, 20 KO) looks like a reasonably challenging start. Outside of his destructive knockout loss to Canelo Alvarez, his only losses since 2003 have come by either split/majority decision or knockouts in fights he was winning. “The Riverside Rocky” is 4-1 in his last five, giving Keith Thurman absolute hell in January of last year and smashing John Molina Jr. eight months later.