By Miguel Rivera
Nearing the final lap of his professional career, former world champion Juan Manuel 'Juanma' Lopez (36-6, 32 KOs), 35-years-old, is motivated to stage the one fight that never took place during the prime of his career - a showdown with fellow former champ Yuriorkis Gamboa.
Juanma will return on November 10th against Cristian Mino, and then he plans to move forward with a fight against Gamboa.
The two rivals will co-headline on the same card, at the Miami-Dade County Fair & Expo in Miami, Florida. Gamboa faces Miguel Beltran in the main event.
The fight with Mino has been agreed upon for the lightweight limit of 135-pounds.
"What we want is to beat Miño and then Gamboa," said Juanma to ESPN Deportes.
"Gamboa asked for the fight and he's going to have it, I'm sure it will be a great fight, I know that Gamboa is not at his best either, but we are both at a time where we want to demonstrate many things, and I know I have the punch and the motivation to first win on November 10 and then go on to Gamboa.
"With Mino I will arrive very well prepared. Today we are doing a great job with William Cruz, who is the same coach of Jayson Velez. I know that it is the final part of my career and maybe if it wasn't for William I would not be here. This is my last boat, and this boat is leaving. I'm going to do the fights that I have left and I want to do them well.
"We are going to be very focused on the fight, not on the weight and that's a good thing. I'm not 25 years old and it's not the same as before. I'm going in with a puncher like myself, we have to be careful, but with my experience I must win and then go for Gamboa. I want to have a good performance and give the fans a big fight so they can see me later with Gamboa if he wins.
"Gamboa said that I'm afraid of him, but I do not remember ever saying I was afraid of him, I'm not afraid of him. After this fight we're going for everything."