Viewed as a sizable underdog heading into his welterweight showdown against WBO belt holder, Terence Crawford, in December of 2019, Egidijus Kavaliauskas believed that the stars were finally aligning.
Following years of taking on decent opposition, the Lithuanian native warned Crawford of what was to come. However, while he managed to get off to a hot start, Kavaliauskas eventually met his untimely demise via ninth-round stoppage. Two years later, Kavaliauskas would once again come up short on the grand stage, this time, at the hands of Vergil Ortiz Jr.
Nevertheless, regardless of his recent setbacks, the 34-year-old maintains that his championship dreams haven't fallen completely by the wayside. In fact, if the former title challenger successfully nabs just a handful of victories, he suspects that he’ll be right back in the mix.
“It depends on the fight,” said Kavaliauskas to BoxingScene.com when asked when he expects to compete for a world title. “But I think two or three fights.”
Step one for the championship hopeful will come in a matter of days when Kavaliauskas takes on journeymen, Mykal Fox. The two are officially set to clash at Dignity Health Sports Park, in Carson, California.
Though he’s been backed publicly by oddsmakers, Kavaliauskas (22-2-1, 18 KOs) isn’t taking his man lightly. Faced with a bevy of physical disadvantages, including a seven-inch height and 10-inch reach advantage for the lanky Fox, Kavaliaukas has immured himself in an arduous training camp.
Well aware that Fox represents a complex and unique puzzle, Kavaliauskas admits that despite being a former Olympian, he has no intentions of getting into a tactical boxing match with his upcoming foe. Instead, from the moment the opening bell sounds, he'll look to bring perpetual pressure.
“He’s a pretty smart boxer, he uses his distance. He boxes smart. I just need to press the guy. No fighting for me from the distance. I just need to go in there and brawl with him.”
Should Kavaliauskas not only pick up the win on the 8th of October but also reel off several victories in a row, his championship expectancies remain minuscule.
Currently, with both Crawford and unified 147-pound belt holder, Errol Spence Jr., continuing in their exhausting negotiations, the rest of the division has been forced to twiddle their thumbs and simply wait.
Although Kavaliauskas is attempting to remain calm, he confesses that his patience is beginning to draw thin. Along with the Lithuanian, a long line of welterweight contenders are anxious for their own crack at world title glory, prompting the highly ranked contender to encourage both Spence and Crawford to pick up the pace and get their undisputed showdown underway.
“Everyone is hoping, they need to fight each other and then see who has the belts. If they want to move up in weight then they release the belts then all of the other guys can just fight each other and get those belts.”