By Jake Tiernan: Leigh Wood is expected to get a huge seven-figure payout for his fight with Josh Warrington in September at the City Ground in Nottingham, provided the fight takes place at that venue.
The 34-year-old Wood, who toiled in near oblivion just a few years ago, could potentially make millions from his Warrington fight and earn life-changing money to provide him golden parachute for his retirement.
Wood (27-3, 16 KOs) is relentless against popular former IBF Featherweight Champion Warrington (31-2-1, 8 KOs) at the 30,000-capacity City Ground. However, Wood’s promoter Eddie Hearn is unsure if the seat will be available this month.
If not, Wood may have to settle for defending his newly won WBA 126-pound title at Warrington’s home ground in Leeds, which could be a disaster for him. We’ve seen Warrington get away with murder thanks to his brutal tactics against Mauricio Lara, Kiko Martinez and most recently Luis Alberto Lopez.
“Getting into the ring with Lara was a big risk, but the reward was going to be huge if Leigh made it. The reward is huge now,” said Ade Oladipo on his canal. “Leigh Wood will always be known as a two-time world champion.
“He’s going to get revenge on whoever fired him last time, and what’s more, you saw the interview later. Leigh said: “Yeah, City Ground on. This is what he wants.’
“If Leigh Wood didn’t fight and win, you’re not a two-weight world champion. If he didn’t win and fought someone else, a guy named (Otabek) Kholmatov is mandatory for this belt. I like Leigh Wood and he’ll probably resent me.
“I don’t think Leigh Wood hits Chołmatow. He’s an Uzbek warrior. 11-0 with 10 knockouts, killer. Killer! This is what the next scheduled fight would look like.
“If Leigh Wood fought Kholmatov and lost, people don’t know who Kholmatov is. It’s a bad loss of your fortune. They know who Lara is. It’s weird. In the end, all ended well for Leigh. He gets a City Ground fight that will be seven figures.
“He’s 34; he’ll be 35 in a few weeks, Leigh Wood, and it looks like he’ll be fighting Josh Warrington. I think he will also beat Josh Warrington. So, Wood, what an Indian summer. Can Xu, Michael Conlan, Mauricio Lara and potentially Josh Warrington. Incredible. He’s the guy who lost to Jazza Dickens three years ago.
“They knew that Mauricio Lara who was coming in had trouble making weight. So they thought, “If we can make it past the sixth round, his anger and energy will start to subside,” and it did. His energy dropped significantly after the sixth round,” said Ade.