Manny Pacquiao conqueror Yordenis Ugas ready to rip up the form book and trounce Errol Spence Jr, too
Manny Pacquiao conqueror Yordenis Ugas sounds ready to rip up the form book again and trounce Errol Spence Jr. at their April 16 boxing match inside the AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
The welterweight champions visited the 80,000 capacity stadium Wednesday to announce their three-belt unification bout, organized by Premier Boxing Champions and broadcast on Showtime pay-per-view.
Though American boxer Spence is the favorite to win the mega-fight, Ugas is used to the underdog status. He had to beat the odds in 2021 to defeat the former eight-weight world champion Pacquaio in style, pushing the Filipino fighter into retirement.
Now, tricky Cuban boxer Ugas seems determined to do it all again.
“I’ve fought since I was six years old, and I have overcome any and all challenges,” said Ugas in a statement sent to Insider. “I was ready for Pacquiao, and I’m going to be ready for Spence.”
Ugas called himself a warrior Wednesday and claimed he pushed for the Spence bout because he wants to seek out “the biggest challenges” and “fight the best.”
He said: “I’m here, and I’m ready to prove that everything I’ve done so far wasn’t a fluke at all.
“You know how long I’ve been calling for this fight and how long I’ve wanted this fight? Four years. I have wanted this for so long. Spence is one of the best in the world, and I’m so glad that I get to face him like I’ve wanted for the past four years.”
The winner in next month’s bout will own three of the four major championships (WBA, WBC, and IBF) in the 147-pound division, with the only other title to collect — the WBO — is in Terence Crawford’s possession.
Both fighters said they were eager to push for that showdown — one that would finally create an undisputed ruler in one of boxing’s glamour divisions.
Spence called it “strap season” and showed that he was wearing a shirt that said similar, meaning he’d do what he could to collect all the belts he can.
“At the end of the day, I want to be the undisputed welterweight champion of the world,” said Spence. “This is another step toward that goal. I’ve been the shot caller. I’m the big fish at 147.”
‘A fight between two of the best welterweights in the world’
But first he has to navigate a way through a fight with Ugas, who, Spence said “is going to give his all.”
Spence said: “He’s a tough competitor who comes to fight. I thought he beat Shawn Porter in 2019 and then he beat Pacquiao with an arm injury.
“He’s a great warrior, but I believe that it’s my time to show the world that I’m here to win another belt.”
Closing, Ugas said: “This is a fight between two of the best welterweights in the world … whoever wins this fight is going to be the king of the division and the one that calls the shots from now on.”