The World Boxing Association announced a Monday, November 1st purse bid for a featherweight matchup between Leigh Wood and Michael Conlan. The move comes after representatives for both fighters failed to reach an agreement, even after an extension from the original purse bid date of October 11th.
Leigh Wood currently holds the WBA “regular” title at featherweight, a belt he won back in July via an upset victory over Xu Can. Unfortunately for Wood, he picked up that belt less than two weeks before the WBA started their title reduction policy to normalize the farcical number of WBA “champions” across all weight divisions.
Wood was ordered back in late August to fight Michael Conlan, the Irish boxer who most recently notched a decision win over TJ Doheny back in early August. That win gave Conlan the WBA “interim” title, which was eliminated soon after as part of the title reduction policy. Conlan is still perhaps best known for his final performance at the Rio Olympics in 2016, which saw him blasting obscene gestures and naughty words at judges after a very unjust decision loss.
The purse split will be 55% to Wood, 45% to Conlan, with the winner required to face WBA “super” featherweight titleholder Leo Santa Cruz. That assumes, of course, that Santa Cruz can find the WBA featherweight belt in his attic, basement, or whatever steamer trunk he’s been keeping it in since the last time he defended it back in February of 2019.
Whether or not the winner ever faces a 126-pound Santa Cruz, the potential fight between the British Wood and the Irish Conlan carries the potential for a lively, energetic atmosphere. We’ll find out on Monday, November 1st if a bid high enough to confirm the fight comes through and actually makes it happen.