Light heavyweight contender Sullivan Barrera may have been stopped in his most recent fight but that is not deterring him in his goal of becoming a world titleholder.
Barrera returns to the ring tonight against Sean Monaghan at the Aviator Sports Complex, in Brooklyn, New York. The 10-round bout will be streamed live on Facebook Watch (9 p.m. ET/ 6 p.m. PT).
Barrera (21-2, 14 knockouts) was stopped by WBA titleholder Dmitry Bivol in his most recent bout, on March 3 in New York City. The unbeaten Bivol broke Barrera down throughout the fight before ending matters in round 12.
The 36-year-old Barrera will face Monaghan in a crossroads bout in which the winner will maintain title contention. Monaghan will have a partisan crowd on hand in Brooklyn, as he resides in nearby Long Island.
Acknowledging the loss to Bivol, Barrera believes he is a better fighter as a result.
“I always come to fight,” said Barrera after a recent media workout. “Every fight leaves a lesson. I took many lessons from the fight against Bivol. I saw opportunities I did not take.”
Monaghan (29-1, 17 KOs), who is ranked No. 6 by the WBC, has not fought since November 4 of last year, when he defeated Evert Bravo by decision over eight rounds. Prior to that fight, Monaghan suffered his first loss as a pro to contender Marcus Browne.
Barrera has faced the better opposition between the two and is confident he can not only notch a win but will also retire Monaghan.
“I’ve put in a lot of work (for this fight),” said Barrera, who is originally from Havana, Cuba and now resides in Miami. “I feel good. I feel great. (I am) ready to retire him.”
Prior to the loss to Bivol, Barrera had won four consecutive bouts, including a knockout victory over Vyacheslav Shabranskyy and a decision victory over Joe Smith Jr.
Barrera, who is ranked No. 4 by the WBA, is ranked No. 8 by The Ring Magazine.
Tonight is a make or break fight for both Barrera and Monaghan. Barrera is the favorite to win but a loss would significantly derail his hopes to land any significant fight afterward.
Barrera is confident he will have his hand raised after the fight.
“I will not allow any opportunity to slip and (I will) capitalize on his mistakes. Derik (Santos, Barrera’s trainer) and I worked on all those details.
“I’m going to be the better man. I’m going to bring it and someday become the number one light heavyweight in the world.”
Francisco A. Salazar has written for RingTV.com since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper, BoxingScene.com and FightNights.com. He can be reached by email at email@example.com or on Twitter @FSalazarBoxing.
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