Luis Alberto Lopez won his IBF featherweight title in hostile territory and it looks as though he’ll defend it there, too. Jamie Conlan tells Belfast Live that talks are “ongoing” to pit brother Michael against “Venado” on May 27th at Belfast’s SSE Arena.
Conlan (18-1, 9 KO) has won two straight since falling short in 2022’s Fight of the Year with Leigh Wood, dominating Miguel Marriaga over 12 and torching Karim Guerfi in 2:34 four months later. While it’s a quick return to the world stage on paper, “Mick” is 31 and at the peak of his powers, so you can’t really blame him for wanting to dive back in.
Lopez (27-2, 15 KO) punched his way from obscurity to international prominence with wins over Andy Vences, Gabriel Flores Jr, and Isaac Lowe to set up a shot at Josh Warrington, ultimately surviving a gnarly headbutt and a late rally to lift the belt in Leeds. This will be a voluntary defense, as his first mandatory will be determined by Kiko Martinez vs Reiya Abe in April.
A nice little battle of Lopez’s awkwardness, volume, and power against Conlan’s strong technical base. We’ll keep you posted as contracts are signed and an undercard comes together.