By Steve Kim
Should welterweight contender Egis Kavaliauskas (19-0, 16 KO's) defeat Juan Carlos Abreu on Saturday night at the Save Mart Center in Fresno, California, will 'the Mean Machine' from Lithuania be in line for a title shot - namely WBO beltholder, Terence Crawford?
''That's a question not to me, that's a question for the promoter," was the answer from Egis Klimas, who manages Kavaliauskas, to BoxingScene.cpm.
"But I'm saying Egis is ready for the title but again, that's a question to the promoter, Can they organize it? Egis is ready. He's been six years as a professional and I think he's ready for the title anytime."
Like Crawford, Kavaliauskas is promoted by Top Rank.
Crawford, who just recently won the title versus Jeff Horn last month with a stoppage victory in Las Vegas, is scheduled to return to the ring in mid-October. Several names have been mentioned to face him, but at the moment there is no frontrunner to face him.
When asked if they would take this daunting assignment in the fall, Klimas responded by stating - "of course."
Kavaliauskas is rated number two by the WBO and ranked by all the other sanctioning bodies.
"My personal feeling is he's a natural welterweight, he's not coming up from 135 or 140 he's strong, he hits like a mule," said Klimas of his fighter.
"Everybody who spars him in the gym says he's the hardest puncher plus he has the combination of talent, desire, hunger. He's got everything in place to be a champion."
Kavaliauskas, who turned pro in 2013, represented Lithuania at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics Games. The boxer won a bronze medal in the 2011 amateur World Championships in Baku.
Kavaliauskas-Abreu is part of the ESPN broadcast that features Jose Ramirez's first defense of his WBC 140-pound title versus Danny O'Connor.
Steve Kim is the news editor for BoxingScene.com.