On July 3rd Michel Rivera (21-0) made a major statement in the lightweight division.  

The 23-year-old fast rising prospect scored a highlight reel knockout of Jon Fernandez (21-2) in 8 rounds in their Showtime televised bout. The fight took place on the Chris Colbert-Tugstsogt undercard.

Early on in the fight Rivera was confident that he would not only beat Fernandez but stop him. He noticed that the same punch was working over and over.

"I knew that the punch would do that to him. If you look back at the fight I hit him with that same punch many times.  That was the Knockout of the Year.  My hands are blessed by God," Rivera stated.

"The difference between that punch and when I hit him with it earlier was the speed. He didn't see the punch coming. I used the jab to set it up. I am very fast just like Muhammad Ali.  I am the reincarnation of him."

As for what is next, Rivera hopes to land a major fight by the end of the year.

"I want any of the big names. I am ready for a world title. I have said before Gervonta Davis, Teofimo Lopez, Devin Haney, Ryan Garcia. I believe I will beat any of them," Rivera told BoxingScene.com.

The Dominican fighter has won 4 out of his past 5 fights by knockout and is 2-0 with 2 knockouts in 2021.

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