By Luis Sandoval
Super Bantamweight Leo Santa Cruz has been making great strides in his career as he’s already captured titles in two weight classes and has quickly become a fan favorite fighter due to his exciting and relentless style. Santa Cruz will be starting his 2014 campaign on March 8th when he takes on former champion Cristian Mijares at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, NV under the Saul Alvarez-Alfredo Angulo pay per view main event.
Santa Cruz so far has passed every test put in front of him and while he’s not looking past Mijares one bit, he feels he’s ready to take on a big fight in his division. When BoxingScene caught up with the current WBC Super Bantamweight champion, he made it clear he’s willing to take on all the top fighters including the kingpin of the division in Guillermo Rigondeaux.
“Yes, there’s Carl Frampton. Scott Quigg and Kiko Martinez who has the IBF [title] and [Guillermo] Rigondeaux. I don’t like Rigondeaux’s style to fight him but that’s one fight I would like to have because the fans want that fight. They’ve been saying if I want to be the best I have to beat [Rigondeaux] and if they want it, I’m willing to do it. I’m not scared of anybody” said Santa Cruz.
“Some people might say that I’m scared but I’m not scared. I’m not scared of nobody. The reason I’m not fighting him is because my dad doesn’t think it’ll be a good fight and I have to respect that. I have to fight whoever my manager and my promoter tell me. If it was up to me I would fight him but you have to respect your team’s decision. Hopefully one day we fight”.
The Rigondeaux fight unfortunately has the least chance of happening due to the promotional feud between Top Rank and Golden Boy that doesn’t appear will be coming to an end anytime soon. The fight however that Santa Cruz would like to pursue and have next should he be victorious is against undefeated Carl Frampton.
Santa Cruz was asked if he felt that a big fight would happen this year and if he’d express his desire to his handlers.
“Yeah, I think so; especially against Carl Frampton. He’s been calling me out and I said ‘Okay, I want to fight him then’. He’s a great fighter, he’s undefeated, and he comes forward and is strong so I think that’s going to be a great fight. I’m going to tell my promoter and manager if it’s possible to make that fight and make it as soon as they can” Santa Cruz told BoxingScene.
While Santa Cruz is hoping for a defining 2014, he also knows he cannot underestimate his current assignment in Cristian Mijares. He and his father are fully focused on getting their first victory of the calendar year and then proceed to bigger things.
You can follow Luis Sandoval on Twitter & Instagram @Truewest007.