Lawrence Okolie and Richard Riakporhe were almost in a physical altercation when they both attended the European premiere of CREED III at Cineworld Leicester Square on February 15th, 2023.
Okolie has a perfect record of 18 wins, with 14 of them coming by knockout, and holds the WBO cruiserweight title. Meanwhile, Riakporhe has 16 wins with 12 knockouts and is close to fighting for a championship.
Riakporhe emerged victorious in his most recent bout and defeated Krzysztof Glowacki, the same person who Okolie had vanquished in order to gain his world title in 2021.
Following his success, the challenger declared that he would like to go up against his fellow countryman in his next match. The two fighters had always held each other in high regard until their encounter.
‼️ Lawrence Okolie and Richard Riakporhe clashing at the CREED III London premiere this evening… pic.twitter.com/fdIKYIRq8p
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) February 15, 2023
Things quickly escalated as the two attempted to reach one another, requiring an intervention from those who were present. It is not known precisely what initiated the disagreement.
But once things escalated, Spencer Fearon, former boxer and now pundit, was among those who intervened to separate the two.
In the aftermath of the incident, Okolie said: “Nothing, nothing happened. It’s light, what I’ll say is it’s light. That boy is light, and I will show him he’s light work. Let me handle my business in March, and then we’ll show him. Easy work.”
As for Riakporhe, he was equally keen to set the record straight. In his comments to talkSPORT, he stated: “I watched this film CREED, it was an amazing film. I was just catching up with a few friends of mine and I saw Lawrence just come out of nowhere and start talking to me.
“I felt disrespected, he came into my space. And then I just saw red, I don’t know what happened after that, everybody was getting separated…I heard the clip is doing numbers, it’s gone viral. It is what it is.”
Okolie’s next fight is scheduled to take place against his mandatory opponent, David Light, on March 25th, 2023. And should he come out victorious, then the calls for him to face Riakporhe will only increase.