Stephen Fulton made a lot of fans on Saturday night, including a potential future challenger.
Former unified 122-pound titlist Danny Roman was among those impressed by Futlon’s stellar performance in outfighting Angelo Leo to take his “0” and WBO title in their Showtime-televised main event. A furious pace was forced by the Philadelphia native, who won by scores of 119-109, 119-109 and 118-110 to claim the crown.
“Stephen Fulton’s performance was great,” Roman told BoxingScene,com immediately after the fight. “He stuck to his game plan and beat Angelo Leo at his own fight. The pace of the fight was a busy pace. I wish Angelo had made some adjustments in there.”
Fulton (19-0, 8KOs) now enters the top-tier mix that includes unified titlist Murodjon ‘MJ’ Akhmadaliev (8-0, 6KOs), Luis Nery (31-0, 24KOs), Brandon Figueroa (21-0-1, 16KOs) and Roman (28-3-1, 10KO)—all of whom plan to return to the ring within the first four month of 2021.
Akhmadaliev—who edged Roman via split decision in their terrific 12-round war last January—is locked into a tough mandatory title defense versus Japan’s Ryosuke Iwasa which is targeted for March 13. Talks continue to swirl of a head-to-head showdown between Nery and Figueroa, leaving Roman as the most enticing option for anyone in the talent-laden junior featherweight division.
As for the former unified titlist, no opponent is off limits—least of all, the newest titleholder at the weight.
“Yes, Fulton is definitely in my plans,” insists Roman, who hopes to return in April and serves as the mandatory challenger to Nery’s WBC title. “As I always say I am here to fight the best. Also, Fulton proved tonight that he now belongs at the top of the division and great fights can be made.”
Roman is coming off of a 12-round win over former bantamweight titlist Juan Carlos Payano last September.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox