By Matt Lieberman: A week after pulling out of the World Boxing Super Series tournament, Regis Prograis is reportedly working on a deal with WBSS to return to the tournament to face Josh Taylor in the final on October 26 in London, England. The fight will be on DAZN. It’s still being finalized, according to Mike Coppinger.
The undefeated WBA light welterweight champion Prograis (24-0, 20 KOs) pulled out of the WBSS tournament last week complaining of alleged late payments, delays with scheduled and bad faith representations. But it looks like the WBSS is going to bring the 30-year-old Prograis back to fight IBF 140 pound champion Taylor (15-0, 12 KOs) in London, England on the 26th of October next month. There are a lot of boxing fans both in the UK and the United States looking forward to this fight.
Sources tell @TheAthletic The World Boxing Super Series is finalizing a deal to bring Regis Prograis back into the tourney for a junior welterweight title unification fight against Josh Taylor on Oct. 26 in London. DAZN will stream the 140-pound WBSS final
— Mike Coppinger (@MikeCoppinger) August 16, 2019
Provided the money comes in from the WBSS tournament organizers, it should be an exciting fight between Prograis and Taylor. DAZN will stream the fight live, and the winner of the Prograis-Taylor fight will hold the IBF and WBA champion. It’ll help set up another interesting fight against WBC/WBO 140 pound champion
Josh Taylor viewed as unstoppable force by fans
Prograis is going to need to bring something extra to the table for him to beat the undefeated Taylor, because he’s looking destined to win the tourney. Taylor recently completely dominated IBF 140 pound champion Ivan Baranchyk in beating him by a 12 round unanimous decision on May 18 in the semifinal of the WBSS tourney. The fight took place in Glasgow, Scotland.
Taylor took a close fight, and ran away with it in the second half of the contest. The 2012 Olympian Taylor knocked Baranchyk down twice in round six, and came close to stopping him in that round. Baranchyk showed a good chin in beating able to survive the round, and stay upright the remainder of the fight. Taylor won the fight by the scores 115-111, 117-109 and 115-111. Boxing News 24 had it for Taylor 117-109. It was supposed to be an evenly matched fight, but Taylor had too much skills for the Russian fighter Baranchyk. In the quarterfinal, Taylor defeated American Ryan ‘Blue Chip’ Martin (22-1, 12 KOs) by a seventh round knockout on November 3, 2018 in Glasgow, Scotland.
Martin was in awe of Taylor’s boxing skills, and he was afraid to throw anything back at the Scottish fighter for fear of being countered. Taylor knocked Martin down in the seventh, and the fight was subsequently halted moments later. Martin hasn’t fought since, and it’s unclear whether he’ll continue his pro career. Losing to Taylor the way he did had to be a crushing blow for Martin. It wasn’t even close. That kind of loss would make any fighter question whether it’s worth it to continue their careers.
Prograis will need to beat Taylor in the lion’s den
Fighting Taylor in London is going to put Prograis at a big disadvantage on October 26, because he’s going to be fighting the crowd as well. Prograis will be fighting the crowd, referee, judges Taylor all at the same time. It’s not that Prograis has a chance of being robbed in London, but will the visiting fighter on the night. Prograis is looking good though in the WBSS tournament. In his quarterfinal fight, Prograis defeated former WBO lightweight champion Terry Flanagan by a 12 round unanimous decision on October 27 in New Orelans. In Prograis’ semifinal fight, he defeated WBA light welterweight champion Kiryl Relikh by a sixth round knockout on April 27 in Lafayette, New Orleans.