Joe Smith Jr knows winning WBO light heavyweight title will bring bigger fights!
On February 13, Joe Smith Jr (26-3, 21KOs) will step in the ring against Maxim Vlasov (45-3, 26KOs). For the second time, he will attempt to become a world champion. In his first attempt he would be soundly beaten by WBA Light Heavyweight champion Dimitry Bivol (17-0, 11KOs) by unanimous decision.
Since that setback in 2019 against Bivol, Smith has reeled off two consecutive impressive victories over former top super middleweight contender Jesse Hart and former WBO Light Heavyweight champion Eleider Alvarez (25-2, 13KOs). He won the Alvarez fight via stoppage in nine rounds. Those wins have led him to another big opportunity.
During a conference, the New Yorker acknowledged the significant opportunities that winning the vacant WBO title would bring him.
“Yeah, I mean definitely everything this title has to offer is motivating. There’s a lot of big fights out there once you get a belt, so I’m really looking forward to winning this WBO world championship so I can get those big fights.”
A win puts him in position to face off with hard-hitting IBF and WBC unified champion Artur Beterbiev (15-0, 15KOs) as well as a rematch with Bivol for an opportunity to unify the light heavyweight division. But first he has to handle business against a very experienced and tough Vlasov who is just as motivated to become champion.
By: Jerrell Fletcher