Tony Yoka Faces Former World Title Challenger Carlos Takam In January

Is Carlos Takam a true Step-Up Fight For Tony Yoka?

Heavyweight contender Tony Yoka in the ring, former world title challenger Carlos Takam in a fight stance
Tony Yoka (left), Carlos Takam

Is Carlos Takam a true Step-Up Fight For Tony Yoka?

All-Star Boxing has announced that Tony Yoka (11-0, 9 KOs) will next fight former world title challenger Carlos Takam (39-6-1, 28 KOs) on January 15, 2022 at the Accor Arena in Paris, France. Yoka is unbeaten and certainly a talented fighter. Unfortunately, the 2016 Olympic gold medalist has moved slowly so far in his career. Despite that reality, the 29-year-old is ranked #6 by the IBF, #11 by the WBC, and #15 by the WBO. Following his most recent win against Peter Milas, the 29-year-old stated he wanted to face a top 15, world-ranked heavyweight in his next bout.

He’s not getting that in Takam, who is a former world heavyweight title challenger who could provide a tough test. Though certainly up there in age, the 40-year-old has been durable and rugged throughout most of his career. But in his most recent fight, he was TKO’d in six rounds by Joe Joyce in July of 2021.

With Takam having fought most of his professional career in France, this is a fight that will garner quite a bit of attention locally. But on a larger scale, some pundits and hardcore fans will look at this match with disappointment.

There were active negotiations for a fight between Yoka and world-ranked heavyweight Martin Bakole. According to Bakole’s manager, Billy Nelson, Bakole had accepted an offer to fight Yoka. That would have been the kind of match Yoka claims he desired. So, it seems odd that he and his team have settled for Takam. It further draws the ire of critics who claim that the Frenchman is overly protected. On paper, Yoka looks to be a sizeable favorite. But the fight will depend very much on what Takam has left in the tank.

By: Michael Wilson Jr.

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Mike is the host of boxing podcast "Pound 4 Pound Boxing Report" and is a Senior Writer for