By Ryan Burton

MGM GRAND, LAS VEGAS - Hosea Burton has spent the better part of the spring in Las Vegas as he prepares for his return to the ring.  The 30-year-old Manchester resident has won 5 fights in a row since suffering his only career loss against Frank Buglioni.

He will be fighting a tune up fight on July 5th and then after that he would like a shot at any of the top light heavyweights in the world.

"At the moment it is a red hot division. There are a lot of good champions. I am 23-1 and ready for a good opportunity with one of them so if any of you champions want to have a go, I am 23-1 and I can fight," Burton stated.

WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev was supposed to return to the ring in Russia against Burton's domestic rival Anthony Yarde but that fight date has been cancelled and the WBO has ordered another purse bid for June 24th.

Burton is not impressed at all with what he has seen from Yarde who is 18-0 with 17 knockouts.  He believes that Yarde's record is largely manufactured and claims that he isn't willing to fight anyone who remotely presents a challenge.

"I have wanted to fight Anthony Yarde for a fair few months now but they won't take it back home. I personally think Kovalev is too good for him and Yarde hasn't had a proper challenge yet. I think Kovalev just knows too much. It depends what Kovalev is though. I have heard a few rumors about Kovalev which I hope aren't true but 50% of Kovalev still beats Yarde," said Burton.

Burton, who is a cousin of lineal heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, also said that it is possible that Kovalev-Yarde never happens.  He believes there is a good chance that Yarde backs out completely and goes a different direction.

"He skipped domestic level back home. He wouldn't fight anybody with a pulse. He has only fought a load of has beens and never has beens. He has done a job on them and knocked them out and looked good doing it. I think he's gotten the chance because he has the six pack and he looks like a good boxer but he came over here last time Tyson fought (against Deontay Wilder) and he turned down 6 different opponents. Frank Warren has invested a lot of money in him so he wants to get his money back. It wouldn't surprise me if that fight never came off," said Burton.

Send questions or comments to You can follow Ryan on Twitter @ringsidewriter