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Josh Taylor claims he is still the top dog in the 140lb division as he never lost his belts


Josh Taylor still views himself as the 140-pound division's indisputable champion.


Taylor cannot see how any of the other champions in his division could suggest he is not the one to beat in it, despite the fact that the Scottish southpaw relinquished three of his four titles after successfully defending each of them against Jack Catterall 15 months ago. The only person to defeat WBC champion Regis Prograis (28-1, 24 KOs) was Taylor (19-0, 13 KOs). To earn the IBF title, Subriel Matias (19-1, 19 KOs) defeated the inexperienced Jermias Ponce (30-1, 20 KOs). Taylor gave up last year, and Rolando "Rolly" Romero (15-1, 13 KOs) defeated Ismael Barroso (24-4-2, 22 KOs) last month in a contentious ninth-round stoppage to claim the then-vacant WBA title.


On Saturday night in New York, Taylor, 32, will defend the sole title he held—the WBO junior welterweight championship—against mandatory challenger Teofimo Lopez, 18-1, 13 KOs.


“You have to beat me to get a hold of them belts,” Taylor told BoxingScene.com. “The belts the other lads have got, they’re my belts. I never lost them. I let go of them. So, they’re my belts. They’re still number two in the division. I’m still the king. No one’s beaten me, so I am the man to beat. I am the top dog in the 140 division. I’ve got one belt left and if you wanna become champion, you’re gonna have to fight me and beat me for it.”


Taylor consented to a rematch because he was determined to beat Catterall more convincingly, but it was twice postponed, the second time owing to Taylor's foot injury. Before the Catterall rematch could be rescheduled, the WBO mandated that Taylor defend his lone remaining title against Brooklyn's Lopez, a former unified lightweight champion.

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