Arnold Barboza: I Want Teofimo Lopez or World Title Shot

Boxing Scene

Junior welterweight contender Arnold Barboza Jr. waited nearly 10 years as a pro to make his main event debut, and he took full advantage of the opportunity.

Barboza (27-0, 10 KOs), from South El Monte, California, grinded down Danielito Zorrilla to win a 10-round unanimous decision in front of a sold-out crowd of 2,836 Friday evening at Pechanga Resort Casino. Ranked No. 8 by the WBO at 140 pounds, he prevailed by scores of 98-92 and 97-93 2x.

Barboza returned from an 11-month layoff in vintage form, wearing down Zorrilla with a consistent body attack and well-placed right hands. Zorrilla (16-1, 12 KOs), down big on the cards, summoned one final charge in the 10th round. He landed a crisp right hand that wobbled Barboza, creating one very anxious moment for the Southern California standout. Barboza composed himself and held on for win number 27.

Barboza said, “I was a little rusty. It’s been a while. I’m not going to be inactive like that no more, man. I’m going to be fighting constantly.

“I was more off balance {in the 10th round}. I was right there. Once you saw me off balance, I was right back to my thing. Shout out to my conditioning. My conditioning was on point.”

Barboza would now like to get a world title shot, but he’s also very interested in getting a crack at former world champion Teofimo Lopez. Next month, Lopez will make his junior welterweight debut against Carlos Campa. It will be Lopez’s first  bout since suffering a decision loss to George Kambosos last year.

“My manager knows, if we can’t get a title shot, you know who it is. We want Teofimo. It’s either a title shot or him,” Barboza said.

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