The name of the game is hit and not get hit. Subriel Matias, however, doesn’t abide by that way of thinking.
For the 31-year-old, he often places his chin directly in the air and dares his opponents to take their best swing. At times, Matias may stumble, but he never falls. Last month, at the Michelob Ultra Arena, in Las Vegas, Nevada, Shohjahon Ergashev dominated the first two rounds against the current IBF champ. His momentum, of course, didn’t last.
Matias (20-1, 20 KOs) began pouring it on once he realized that he could take what Ergashev was dishing out. In just four additional rounds, the normally durable contender was unable to answer the bell for the start of the seventh.
With another knockout win under his belt, Teofimo Lopez has taken notice. But while most believe that Matias deserves to be in the discussion of best super lightweight in the world, Lopez simply views him as a decent fighter, nothing more, nothing less.
“He’s a solid dude,” said Lopez on The Porter Way Podcast. “A solid fighter, definitely got that grit.”
Lopez, 26, may have been relegated to just one appearance this year but he made it count. At the Theater in New York’s Madison Square Garden earlier this year, Lopez (19-1, 13 KOs) brushed past the dubious voices and boxed his way to a clear decision victory over Josh Taylor.
Now, Lopez is sitting back and weighing his options. Ostensibly, matchups against Devin Haney, Gervonta Davis, and Ryan Garcia rank near the top of his list. But, if he were presented with a boatload of cash, he would have no problem facing Matias next.
As for how a showdown between them would play out, he knows good and well that Matias has one helluva chin. With that said, never has the Puerto Rican been hit with the sort of leather that Lopez will be throwing come fight night.
“He’s very easy to beat. He’ll probably go out in four.”