By Peter Lim
There couldn't be a more dead-even matchup - style wise, statistically and in actuality - between Miguel Flores (20-0, 9 KOs) and Ryan Kielczweski (25-1, 7 KOs). The two lanky five-foot-eight featherweights will face off on ESPN’s latest installment of Friday Night Fights.
Flores, 24, is a boxer-puncher who can fight effectively from the outside but prefers to slug it out in the trenches where he loves to unleash his favorite weapon - the left hook to the body.
Kielczweski, 27, is the more cerebral stick-and-move tactician, but when forced to brawl, also favors the left hook to inflict the most damage up close and personal. Neither combatant, as their respective below 50-percent knockout rates suggest, has significant fight-ending power.
"He's a pretty fast guy who kind of reminds me of Paul Malignaggi,” Flores told The Houston Chronicle. “We'll have to pressure him and break him down to the body."
It is a high-stakes showdown in which the winner will gain valuable exposure in front of a nation-wide audience, climb the rankings and look forward to more lucrative, high-profile fights. The loser takes a few drops a few rungs down the featherweight ladder and remains waiting in the wings.
"We're knocking on the door for a world title shot. When we do - God willing - beat this guy, we're going to be right there shooting for a world title," Flores said.
"I see a stacked and loaded division full of talent. Leo Santa Cruz, Gary Russell and Carl Frampton are at the top of the food chain. But at the right time, with the right preparation, I think I can take on any of those guys."