After years of chasing it, Tim Tszyu finally has his shot at undisputed super welterweight champion Jermell Charlo.
Charlo made it clear at Tuesday’s virtual press conference that Tszyu is “not the same caliber” as him while Tszyu countered with minimal words, saying that after January 28, there will be a new king of the division.
“Tszyu is young and hungry but I’m young and hungry as well. I’m in the prime of my life and I’m going to challenge myself on January 28,” Charlo told the media, including FIGHT SPORTS.
“I’m not here for a debating contest to say who’s going to win and how I’m going to beat him. This isn’t debating for me. I just have to show it in the ring. That’s it. It’s quite simple. I possess a lot of skills as well, so that’s all that’s needed. January 28, we’ll show it,” Tszyu said.
Charlo claimed the undisputed super welterweight crown back in May when he knocked out Brian Castano in the 10th round. Castano had gone down once in the round before getting flattened completely.
Tszyu said that he has been chasing a fight with the Charlo twin for two years. He solidified his right as a mandatory challenger with a decision win over Terrell Gausha in March – a card that Charlo-Castano II was supposed to take place, but Castano had suffered an injury, pushing the bout to May.
It was Tszyu’s first fight in the U.S., and now his shot at Castano will be his second. Tszyu’s father, former junior welterweight champion Kotsya Tszyu, will be in his son’s corner for this first time since his first professional fight.
Tszyu said that his father has not been able to attend any other fight because he lives overseas.
“His father has done things in boxing, but my pedigree is strong. My pedigree is proven and has been destined for many years,” Charlo added.
Looking ahead, Charlo said he wants to do things similar to YouTuber-turned-boxer Jake Paul, who is an advocate for increasing fighter pay.
“I want it to be where it is now. I want it to be undisputed,” Charlo told FIGHT SPORTS, regarding his legacy.
“Now, I want to defend them. When you think of Jermell Charlo, I’m a ferocious animal that’s coming in the ring. I’m for real about every move I make.
“I’m very intelligent in the ring, smart outside the ring, and made a living for myself. I build more boxing legacies around me. There are people trying to come up in the game and change their lives. Put the guns down, put the gloves in their hands. Doing some things similar to Jake Paul.
“There are a lot of fighters out there who are great that don’t get that opportunity.”
As for Tszyu, aside from the legacy his father left, he wants something a little bit different for himself.
“I just want to inspire as many people as I possibly can through boxing. We get a lot of attention and a lot of people tuning in, so if you can turn that into a positive energy and change their lives, that’s the main thing,” he told FIGHT SPORTS.
The two will meet on January 28 at the Michelob Ultra Arena in Las Vegas.