WBO Super Bantam Champ Juan Manuel Lopez defends his crown tonight at Coliseo Rueben Rodriguez in Bayamon when he meets the challenge posed by WBO bantam kingpin Gerry Penalosa, who is moving up in weight.
At just 25 year of age, hammer-fisted Caguas based southpaw Lopez, 24-0 (22), will pose a big challenge to 36 year old Penalosa but the visiting Filipino legend has upset the hometown favorite before in big fights, winning the WBC Super Fly and WBO Bantam belts on the road.
Lopez is a certified big puncher but Penalosa, 54-6-2 (36), has proven repeatedly, most recently in a decision loss to Daniel Ponce De Leon in a failed bid for the very same title being fought for tonight, that he has a world class chin.
At age 36, the veteran Penalosa will almost certainly try to make this a drawn-out affair to both conserve his energy and capitalize on the champion's lack of experience past ten rounds, due to Lopez's habit of knocking out opposition early.
It should be a thrilling contest full of twists and turns before an eventual winner takes the decision.
On the undercard, promising American light welter Lamont Peterson, 26-0 (12), competes for the Interim WBO title against undefeated French southpaw Willy Blain, 20-0 (3).