By Steve Kim Updated on March 14, 2024

'Camaron Closing in on Title Shot?

Picture for 'Camaron Closing in on Title Shot?

This Saturday night from the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, William Zepeda faces Maxi Hughes in the nights main event. As you peruse the rankings, Zepeda is number one in both the WBC and WBA, whose belts at lightweight are held by Shakur Stevenson and Gervonta Davis, respectively.

So is a title shot imminent?

According to Eric Gomez, the president of Golden Boy Promotions, "This fight is an elimination with the WBA and IBF, which was requested by both sides. So whatever opportunity comes, I mean, the big fight is 'Tank' (Davis). So we'd love to fight 'Tank'. If that fight presents itself, we're going to be ready to go after it."

Picture for 'Camaron Closing in on Title Shot?Cris Esqueda/GBP

In terms of the IBF, that belt is currently vacant but will be filled in May when Vasiliy Lomachenko faces George Kambosos in Australia. Hughes (26-6-2, 5 KOs) is rated fourth by the organization, while Zepeda (29-0, 25 KOs) is sixth. There are rumors that Davis will be facing Frank Martin in the summer.

Should 'Camaron' down Hughes as expected this weekend, would Golden Boy then press an organization to make him a mandatory contender? Or will they ranking squat as so many others have done?

The reality is that most fans would love to see Zepeda clash with either the slick boxing Stevenson, or the hard-hitting Davis. But the boxing business is nowadays about avoidance, risk aversion and platform protection. The reality is that for Zepeda to face the two aforementioned names, it would most likely mean 'crossing the street' away from DAZN.

Picture for 'Camaron Closing in on Title Shot?Cris Esqueda/GBP

When asked what might come next for Zepeda, Gomez told, ''It depends on how he comes out in this fight. If he has a good showing, and that's what he wants (a title shot), it's a matter of sitting down with the team, and planning out the rest of the year for him. 

"Look, he's one of the most exciting fighters out there," Gomez continued. "He doesn't disappoint in his fights. His output is incredible, and we'll just have to sit down with his team, and map out what he wants to do. If that's what he wants next."

Gomez isn't engaging in the usual promotional hyperbole, Zepeda (who is ranked number five in the division by Ring Magazine) is one of the most TV-friendly fighters in the game with his hell-bent-for-leather style. From the opening bell he swarms his opponents out of his southpaw style, and can drown his opponents in leather.

William Zepeda vs. Mercito Gesta Fight Highlights


You can envision him being the next Mexican star, but his last bout took place in a tent at the Commerce Casino back in September, and this upcoming assignment is being staged inside a small room in Las Vegas. For him to get to that next plateau, Zepeda needs that defining title winning performance.

"If that's what he wants next, a title fight, we'll look into it,'' says Gomez.



Before the Zepeda-Hughes main event on DAZN, the professional debut of Joel Iriarte, a 17-time amateur national champion, will take place inside the Chelsea Ballroom. 

I've heard about this young man, who hails from Bakersfield, California, for a few years now. The word that has been thrown around in describing him more than once is 'special'. There's no doubt that he is the most highly regarded amateur that GBP has signed since Frankie Gomez.

"We're very excited about him, we first heard his name some time last year," said Gomez. "He was a top amateur, won a bunch of national titles. I believe he's very similar  to the way Vergil Ortiz was when he was an amateur. He's got the goods."

Picture for 'Camaron Closing in on Title Shot?GBP

The plan is to fight him early and often -- and to move him relatively quickly.

"He wants to stay busy, and the good thing about it is, they're pretty much willing to fight anybody. They want to put the pedal to the medal," stated Gomez.

"I am truly excited to announce my partnership with Golden Boy Promotions,” said Joel Iriarte, who is represented by Sheer Sports Management.  “Joining forces with a legendary organization led by Oscar De La Hoya and Eric Gomez is a dream come true. This marks a new chapter in my career, and I'm ready to bring my skills, passion, and determination to the professional stage. With Golden Boy's guidance, I'm sure that we can achieve greatness together."


This week on 'the 3 Knockdown Rule', Mario Lopez and I review 'Knockout Chaos', and discuss everything else in boxing. Click on the Linktree to subscribe on your preferred podcast platform.

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Also on the Golden Boy card on Saturday are Floyd Schofield, Eric Priest and Tristan Kalkrueth....Iriarte is scheduled for a four-rounder versus Bryan Alexis Cargaucundo...Blair 'the Flair' Cobbs has signed a promotional pact with Don King....Super middleweight contender, Christian Mbilli, has signed a co-promotional deal with Top Rank, alongside his original promoter, Eye of the Tiger....I can be reached at


About Author
'Camaron Closing in on Title Shot?
  • Hosted 'the Main Event' on KIEV 870, and then later XTRA AM1150 ( a three hour show devoted to boxing) from 1996 to 1999.
  • Joined one of the first boxing websites, 'House of Boxing' in 1999, and then later became one of the founders of Maxboxing, that started in 2001, till his departure in 2014.
  • From 2014 to 2018, he was the lead columnist for
  • Was a boxing reporter for from 2018 to 2020.
  • He has written for Ring Magazine, International Boxing Digest and Boxing News.
  • Is the co-host of 'the 3 Knockdown Rule' with Mario Lopez, which has become of the most popular boxing podcasts the past several years.
  • Steve has also served as an announcer and analyst for RingTV, Thompson Boxing, 360 Promotions and CBS Sports Network.