If John Ryder prevails against Jaime Munguia in their forthcoming super middleweight fight, renowned boxing promoter Eddie Hearn has huge plans for the lightweight fighter. Ryder's victory in the fight on January 27 at the Footprint Centre in Phoenix, Arizona, may open doors for him to face prominent fighters like Caleb Plant or David Benavidez.
John Ryder (32-6, 18 KOs) is in the midst of a pivotal phase of his career. A convincing victory over Munguia, an undefeated fighter with a 42-0 and 33 KO record, may greatly raise Ryder's status in the super middleweight class. Hearn, nevertheless, doesn't think that beating Munguia by himself will be sufficient to force a rematch with the super middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez.
Hearn and other detractors have voiced doubts about Munguia's record, claiming it is padded with lower-tier opponents and doesn't have the big names associated with a championship fighter. These scepticism has been heightened by Munguia's near misses versus more experienced combatants like Sergiy Derevyanchenko and Gary O'Sullivan.
Hearn has suggested Caleb Plant and David Benavidez as possible opponents for Ryder in addition to the Munguia fight. Given his chances of fighting Canelo, a fight with Benavidez may be less plausible, but Caleb Plant seems like a more realistic choice. Former IBF super middleweight champion Plant may be Ryder's perfect opponent because he recently lost to Benavidez and hasn't competed in over a year.
Ryder's road to triumph over Munguia won't be simple. He will have to put on a solid show and assert his authority in every round to offset Munguia's strength and rapid work rate. A decisive victory will help him a lot in his quest for a well-publicized matchup with either Plant or Benavidez.
Ryder finds himself at a fork in the path as the fight night draws closer. A victory over Munguia may catapult him into the high echelons of the super middleweight class, but a defeat would dash his hopes of becoming the best. Hearn's support and impending possibilities mean that Ryder's performance versus Munguia will go down as a career-defining event.
How do you think John Ryder will do against Jaime Munguia? If he wins, who should he fight next? Tell us what you think will happen in this bout, as well as possible future matches for Ryder.