By Steve Kim.
After impressively handling Andre Dirrell on Saturday night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, super middleweight contender Jose Uzcategui (27-2, 3 KOs) is now in line to face the winner of the IBF title rematch between champion Caleb Truax and champion James DeGale.
The victory over Dirrell gave Uzcategui the IBF interim title.
The victory was sweet revenge for Uzcategui, who was disqualified in the first outing. The IBF ruled that Uzcategui had knocked Dirrell out with a punch that came after the bell. The sanctioning body did not fully agree with the outcome and ordered the immediate rematch.
If they are unable to get the Truax-DeGale winner in the near future, Team Uzcategui are willing to replace WBA champion George Groves in the ongoing World Boxing Super Series tournament. The final fight is scheduled for June, but may get pushed back due to Groves' injury.
"Viva Uzcategui!" - said a jubilant Sean Gibbons, who works with 'Bolivita' and Zanfer Promotions, to BoxingScene.com.
"We'd like to put out to the world, because Jose came out of [Saturday's] fight like a million bucks, he feels great. So you know George Groves has a shoulder problem and now looking for a second opinion. Jose Uzcategui is ready to jump in the World Boxing Super Series, he's ready to fight in June if they can get it made."
In the late stages of his victory over Chris Eubank Jr. a few weeks ago, Groves' left shoulder popped out of it's socket. It's not clear if he will be able to face Callum Smith in the WBSS finals.
"[Uzcategui would] love to fight Callum Smith in England, in his house, in his backyard, anywhere,'' said Gibbons. "Jose Uzcategui is an unusual fighter, he doesn't worry where the fights are. So he'll face him at anytime."
It is more likely that Uzcategui will face the winner of Truax-Degale II (who are scheduled to meet at some point in the spring)
"Whatever it is, we want the biggest, best fights, whether it's (David) Benavidez, the winner of the WBSS, we want meaningful fights. Jose Uzcategui is ready to erupt. Lets say hypothetically 'Triple G' (Gennady Golovkin) beats 'Canelo' (Saul) Alvarez - come up and take on the best '68-pounder in the world. He makes Gilberto Ramirez look like an amateur. 'Zurdo' is an amateur compared to this guy. This is a real super middleweight," stated a confident Gibbons.
Steve Kim is the news editor for BoxingScene.com.