Michael Conlan calls out Stephen Fulton
In his last prizefight, Stephen “Cool Boy Steph” Fulton (19-0, 8 KO’s) fulfilled his dream of becoming a world champion. He did so by outworking and out-grinding former WBO World Super Bantamweight champion Angelo “El Chinito” Leo (20-1, 9 KO’s). Heading into the fight, it was believed that the two would put on a show. In the end, they did not disappoint.
For twelve straight rounds, the action was steady, ref involvement was low and the technique remained topnotch. When cards were read, however, Fulton won by very wide margins in the eyes of the judges. Yet, even before the new champion could enjoy his freshly commandeered title, he was already being called out. Super bantamweight boxer Michael “Mick” Conlan (14-0, 8 KO’s) took the time to watch the Fulton versus Leo fight. Now, he wants a crack at Cool Boy Steph and his WBO strap too.
THE NEXT EVOLUTION
From a business aspect, Conlan is in a perfect position to get that shot. Prior to his bout with El Chinito, Fulton was ranked as the WBO’s #1 super bantamweight. Michael Conlan was right on his heels ranked at #2. Now that the talented Philly fighter has the title, Conlan should logically assume his number slot in short order. If Mick was to secure the bout, it would stand as his first attempt at a world title himself.
The Irish bruiser is talented, but his biggest claim to fame is still nestled in his amateur days. Conlan won the bronze medal in the 2012 Olympics, then was defeated before medaling in the 2016 Olympic Games. After losing in the 2016 games, Mick infamously gave the finger to the judges, abandoned his amateur career and turned pro. The popular fighter quickly inked a deal with Top Rank and has been building his professional resume ever since. Even without the belt, Fulton would still be the best name on his ledger by leaps and bounds.
If Fulton and Conlan did collide, it is hard to foresee it being a dull affair. Each fighter is focused, in their prime, physically gifted and extremely hungry to prove themselves. Both like to set up shop behind the jab, move well on their feet and love digging to the body. Most importantly, neither of the pair of fighters is ready to let their “0” go! In against one another, the boxing world should not be left wanting.
By: Bakari Simpson