Josh Taylor says super-lightweight rival Teofimo Lopez is “a clown” and he would “take him to bits” if they were to fight next year.
Taylor is expected to defend his WBO super-lightweight title in a rematch against fellow Brit Jack Catterall in early 2023 but has been linked with a possible future clash with American Lopez.
Former lightweight world champion Lopez, who moved up a division after losing his belts to George Kambosos Jr in November 2021, recently told Sky Sports he would knock former undisputed champion Taylor out.
However, Lopez’s plans for a blockbuster with Taylor were almost derailed as he survived a knockdown to claim a narrow points win over Spaniard Sandor Martin in New York over the weekend.
“He is a very good, very skilled fighter, but I do believe that on my night I take him to bits,” Taylor told Sky Sports News.
“He’s a bit of a clown. He seems to look past his opponents all the time. It’s twice he’s made the same mistake and almost paid the price for it again.
“His comments from beforehand… he seems to have the same reoccurring problem, he thinks he’s god’s gift, and then he comes crashing back down to Earth with a bang.”
Lopez announced himself as a star by stunning then-lightweight world champion Vasiliy Lomachenko in 2020, but Taylor says he is not surprised the American is struggling after having moved up in weight.
“I was confident of beating him anyway,” Taylor said. “Let’s not forget, he did very well to beat Lomachenko, but he beat a small, injured lightweight that really could make featherweight.
“You’ve got to give credit where it’s due, but he’s not in there with blown up featherweights anymore.”
Lopez, who called out Taylor once more after his win on Saturday night, had previously said he was open to fighting in the United Kingdom, but the Scot says he would also be happy to go on the road.
Taylor, who has had to give up three of his belts to pursue a rematch with Catterall, became undisputed champion by beating Jose Carlos Ramirez in Las Vegas in May 2021, but feels his US experience was limited by the coronavirus pandemic.
“It would be great, it would be fantastic to have another big blockbuster night at home, but I would like to go back Stateside,” Taylor said.
“The biggest fight I had in becoming undisputed world champion, if it had been in normal times I would have taken thousands over with me, been able to take my friends family and fans. I couldn’t do that, which was very frustrating, so I’d like to go back to the USA and do that again.”
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