SAN FRANCISCO – Montana Love laughed off Liam Paro’s prediction Thursday for how their 12-round junior welterweight fight will unfold Saturday night at Chase Center.

The confident, Cleveland-based southpaw scoffed at Paro’s promise to pressure him into “folding” again, the way Paro believes Love unraveled when fellow Australian Steve Spark stalked him during their November 2022 bout at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in Cleveland. Love (18-1-1, 9 KOs) will fight for the first time since he flipped Spark over the top rope, which led to referee David Fields disqualifying him early in the sixth round of a competitive contest in which Love was dropped during the second round and suffered a cut from an accidental clash of heads in the sixth round.

The 28-year-old Love envisions pummeling Paro in DAZN Pay-Per-View’s co-feature before Regis Prograis defends his WBC super lightweight title versus Devin Haney in the 12-round main event.

“Come on, man,” Love said during the Prograis-Haney undercard press conference. “Like I told [Paro] yesterday, man, all I see is me literally beating the sh!t out this guy. You know what I mean? It ain’t no, it’s no comparison. You know what I mean? He been fighting ducks that’s been sitting there in front of him in Australia. He ain’t never been on a stage like this.

“I been made for stages like this. I been on plenty of stages like this. You know what I mean? And when the world was against me, my back was [against] the wall, what’d I do? Knocked him the f--- out! Ivan Baranchyk – go check him out. He retired, right? We looking to do the same thing to the Aussie over here, man. Ain’t no talking for real. That’s it.”

Love stopped Russia’s Baranchyk after the seventh round of a memorable battle two years ago at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Baranchyk (20-3, 13 KOs), a former IBF junior welterweight champion, hasn’t fought since he didn’t answer the bell for the eighth round of his brutal brawl with Love in August 2021.

Paro (23-0, 14 KOs) was scheduled to challenge Prograis for his WBC belt June 17 at Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, Prograis’ hometown. The Mackay, Australia native withdrew from that title bout early in May once he sustained a slight tear to his left Achilles tendon during a sparring session.

The unbeaten Paro, 27, needed rehabilitation, not surgery, to repair his injury. The skillful southpaw nonetheless hasn’t fought in the almost 14 months since his first-round knockout of countryman Brock Jarvis (then 20-0) in October 2022 in South Brisbane.

Love also sustained an undisclosed injury during training camp that forced him late in June to pull out of a fight against Richardson Hitchins (17-0, 7 KOs), which was scheduled for July 15 at Masonic Temple in Detroit. Hitchins-Love wasn’t rescheduled, but Love is certain he will knock off a different undefeated fighter Saturday night.

“It feels good to be back,” Love said. “You know, I’ve been laying low, quiet, you know, but ear to the streets, still seeing, you know, hearing people talking, like Liam. I seen a interview, him talking crazy and whatnot. But I just wanna let him know, man, this is not a drill. This is the real thing, man, so the little mitt work and bag drills you doing, that sh!t don’t mean nothing.”

Most sportsbooks list Paro as almost a 2-1 favorite over Love. They’ll meet in the final undercard contest before Prograis opposes Haney in the main event of a show scheduled to start at 8 p.m. ET (5 p.m. PT; $59.99 for DAZN subscribers; $74.99 for non-subscribers).

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.