MINNEAPOLIS – Aidos Yerbossynuly informed David Morrell Jr. on Thursday that it is currently hunting season in his native Kazakhstan.

Yerbossynuly believes country comes first, thus Morrell’s mandatory challenger has no intention of returning to his homeland without the belt Morrell draped over his shoulder during their press conference at W Minneapolis The Foshay, a hotel located a few blocks from where they’ll fight Saturday night. Most handicappers have made Morrell (7-0, 6 KOs) at least a 10-1 favorite in advance of their “Showtime Championship Boxing” main event, yet Yerbossynuly (16-0, 11 KOs) doesn’t see himself as even a slight underdog.

“People can think about David Morrell whatever they want to, but I’m confident about myself,” Yerbossynuly told BoxingScene.com through his translator. “There’s nothing special about him. He’s just a regular opponent.”

Yerbossynuly knocked out the only opponent, Lennox Allen, who has faced both him and Morrell in his most recent fight. The 30-year-old contender expected his shot at Morrell’s WBA world super middleweight title to transpire sooner than 13½ months after he knocked out Allen (22-2-1, 14 KOs) in the 10th round of their September 2021 bout in Astana, Kazakhstan.

The 24-year-old Morrell – a confident, Cuban-born southpaw with power, skill and speed – has fought twice since Yerbossynuly beat Allen.

Morrell scored a pair of fourth-round stoppages in those title defenses, first against Alantez Fox (28-3-1, 13 KOs, 1 NC) last December 18 and most recently versus Kalvin Henderson (15-2-1, 11 KOs) on June 4. Both of those victories took place at The Armory, where Morrell and Yerbossynuly will headline Showtime’s tripleheader (9 p.m. ET; 6 p.m. PT).

“I was ready to take this fight after I defeated Lennox Allen and became the mandatory,” Yerbossynuly said. “Promoters had other plans, maybe. I was frustrated when he fought Kalvin Henderson on June 4th. It was supposed to be me, instead of Kalvin Henderson. At that time, I was a little upset. But we figured out everything and I’m fighting him now. Having the belt will open it up for bigger names for me to fight, so now it’s OK.”

Before Morrell battles Yerbossynuly, Showtime will air a 10-round middleweight match in which the Dominican Republic’s Jeison Rosario (23-3-1, 17 KOs), a former IBF/IBO/WBA 154-pound champion, will square off against Albuquerque’s Brian Mendoza (20-2, 14 KOs). Mendoza happily replaced Gomez on short notice last week, a couple days after Gomez sustained an injury to his right wrist while training.

Ukrainian-born Polish prospect Fiodor Czerkaszyn (20-0, 13 KOs) and Nathaniel Gallimore (22-5-1, 17 KOs), of Des Plaines, Illinois, will open Showtime’s telecast in another 10-round middleweight match.

Prior to airing three live fights, Showtime will televise a replay of Jake Paul’s unanimous-decision victory over MMA legend Anderson Silva in their eight-round cruiserweight fight Saturday night at 8 p.m. ET. Paul (6-0, 4 KOs) sent Silva (3-2, 2 KOs) to the canvas early in the eighth round and outpointed the Brazilian southpaw on all three scorecards in a Showtime Pay-Per-View main event last Saturday night at Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale, Arizona.

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.