ARLINGTON, Texas – Cody Crowley respects that he’ll encounter an opponent Saturday night who possesses a huge heart and a track record for performing better than many might’ve expected against several favored fighters.

Josesito Lopez is 37 years old and hasn’t boxed in 16 months. Crowley realizes, though, that upsetting an undefeated welterweight who produced his most impressive victory in his previous bout has placed Lopez (38-8, 21 KOs, 1 NC) in the type of position in which “The Riverside Rocky” has excelled during his 19-year, 46-fight pro career.

The confident Canadian southpaw welcomes just the type of dogfight Lopez promises to bring on the pay-per-view portion of the Errol Spence Jr.-Yordenis Ugas undercard at AT&T Stadium.

“He’s a complete soldier,” Crowley told “He’s been knocked off for a while, but always keeps coming back. And a puncher always has his chance, right? So, I’m looking forward to seeing what the guy brings. I’m not overlooking him at all. I’m very excited to fight the guy because a lot of guys who said that they were coming forward to bang with me don’t end up doing that.

“And you have a guy here who’s on his last hurrah, where a ‘Hail Mary’ might be the only play that he has left. So, come and throw those ‘Hail Marys,’ please, and we’ll see who the last man standing is.”

Crowley (20-0, 9 KOs) responded about as well as anyone could’ve expected to a second-round knockdown during his most recent action.

The 29-year-old Petersborough, Ontario, native got up from what he considered a flash knockdown, quickly regained control of his 10-round fight against previously undefeated Kudratillo Abdukakhorov and out-pointed Uzbekistan’s Abdukakhorov (18-1, 8 KOs) on all three scorecards December 11 at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California. Judges Fernando Villarreal (98-91) and Alejandro Rochin (97-92) scored nine and eight rounds for Crowley, respectively, whereas judge Pat Russell saw it as a much closer contest (95-94).

“That was a big question for a lot of people. ‘Well, Cody hasn’t fought anybody. What’s gonna happen when he actually gets caught by somebody?’ Right?,” Crowley said. “And so that answered a lot of questions, that I’ve got a granite chin. You know, I got hit with a great, clean shot, but I was off balance. You seen my legs, there was nothing wrong with them.

“And you seen that as soon as the ref let me, I went right back in on the guy. So, I think that actually helped me a lot. But it could hurt me a lot, too, cuz people realize, ‘Oh, sh*t! Maybe he’s a lot stronger than we thought he is.’ ”

Crowley’s confidence stems from numerous sparring sessions in Las Vegas with Floyd Mayweather, Ugas, Gervonta Davis, Jorge Linares, Chris Algieri, Jarrett Hurd and Rolando Romero. He hopes to give fans another glimpse of his capabilities on a grand stage Saturday night.

“I love being underestimated,” Crowley said. “I’ve loved the fact that people haven’t given me the credibility for the time and effort I’ve put in, and the skill set that I bring. … You can’t put a price tag on experience, so I look forward to bringing that on Saturday night. And that’s why I think people haven’t seen the best Cody Crowley yet, because every time out there I’m just getting to show you a little bit more of me. And the better and better opponents that come, the more that’s gonna come out of Cody.”

Crowley-Lopez will be one of three undercard bouts Showtime Pay-Per-View will distribute as part of the Spence-Ugas undercard (9 p.m. ET; $74.95).

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