Fight company Triller is making plans to stage the rescheduled Teofimo Lopez-George Kambosos undisputed lightweight championship fight Oct. 17 at Bankwest Stadium in Sydney, Australia, hometown of the title challenger, Triller co-founder Ryan Kavanaugh told ESPN on Friday.
But Lopez’s manager, David McWater, told ESPN that they aren’t willing to fight in Australia, and aren’t on board with the fight being pushed to October from the announced rescheduled date of Aug. 14.
Kavanaugh’s plan is to hold the fight on that Sunday afternoon in Australia at the 38,000-capacity venue, allowing for a primetime Triller Fight Club pay-per-view on Saturday in the U.S.
“That’s our major objection: to ask a guy to fly international and cut weight for 14 days while in quarantine. It’s not right,” McWater said, referring to Australia’s 14-day quarantine mandate. “One guy is at a distinct disadvantage”.
When Lopez tested positive, Kambosos was irate. After all, he spent 15 weeks training in South Florida away from his pregnant wife and two children, aged 1 and 3. His wife traveled from Sydney to Miami ahead of the fight, only to have to fly back with her husband days later.
As per Australian government guidelines, they quarantined for 14 days at a hotel before heading home.
“When there’s a purse bid, the people who win the purse bid have the right to do the event basically wherever they choose,” said Kambosos’ promoter, Lou DiBella. “Triller spent a tremendous amount of money that they can’t get back because Teofimo got COVID.
“On one hand I’m empathetic that Teofimo got COVID, but going to purse bid, this is what we bargained for. If he wants to vacate the IBF belt, that’s Teofimo’s and Dave’s prerogative. Obviously it will cost a lot of people a lot of money. He can’t be compelled to fight for the belt if he wants to give it up.”
If Teofimo vacates his IBF 135-lb title, the vacant belt will be fought over by #1 Kambosos and #2 contender Isaac ‘Pitbull’ Cruz (22-1-1, 15 KOs).
Needless to say, the money won’t be as good for Kambosos fighting Cruz as it would fighting Teofimo.
Fingers Crossed we get to see George Kambosos Jr VS Teofimo Lopez in Sydney with the backing of a massive Greek Australian home crowd.