Yoelvis Gomez remains torn on who will come out ahead in the undisputed junior middleweight championship rematch between Jermell Charlo and Brian Castano.
What he does know is that the end of his training camp will be spent tuning in and scouting the winner as a potential future opponent.
“Charlo-Castano to me is a 50/50 fight, but they have one hundred percent of my attention as a contender,” Gomez told BoxingScene.com through a translator. “I plan to be world champion, so of course I will be tuning in to watch that fight.”
The rematch between Houston’s Charlo (34-1-1, 18KOs) and Argentina’s Castano (17-0-2, 12KOs)—for Charlo’s lineal/WBA/WBC/IBF titles and Castano’s WBO belt—headlines a May 14 Showtime card from Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California. It comes just one week before Gomez (5-0, 5KOs) makes his own Showtime debut versus Mexico’s Jorge Cota (30-5, 27KOs) as part of a May 21 tripleheader from Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona.
Gomez has fought just seven rounds in his three-year, five-fight career but is already being groomed for the best in the talent-rich junior middleweight division. The fight with Cota the first-scheduled ten-round affair for the 24-year-old Cuban southpaw who is based out of Las Vegas.
The idea—with a win, of course—is to immediately graduate to the contender and championship level. It will be a long line for the winner of Charlo-Castano II, the bout already met with one postponement and coming ten months after they fought to a draw last July in San Antonio. No fewer than three mandatory contenders are waiting out their shot at the title, which could result in one belt or more becoming vacant.
Charlo has remained the betting favorite through both fights, with BetMGM sportsbook placing the unified champ as a -160 betting favorite to prevail in the rematch. Most of the rest of the public isn’t entirely sure how things will play out in the sequel, though Gomez has already begun the mental preparation for fights with both.
“Tomorrow, I fight them,” Gomez emphatically stated in perfect English before reverting to his native tongue. “First, I have to take care of Jorge Cota. I’m mentally all in for this fight.
“But if Charlo wins I will be ready for Charlo. If Castano wins, I will be ready for Castano. I’m not about to say ‘No’ to any fighter.”
Gomez-Cota is the chief-support to the interim WBC super middleweight title fight between former two-time full WBC champ David Benavidez (25-0, 22KOs) and former IBF middleweight titlist David Lemieux (43-4, 36KOs).
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox