Upcoming star Mick Conlan admitted his eyebrows were raised slightly when featherweight rival Josh Warrington rejoined Eddie Hearn at Matchroom Boxing last month.
Conlan, set to return to action on March 17 in New York, has been linked to facing Warrington at some point in the next year and a half.
To speed things up, Warrington could sign with Conlan’s promoters at Top Rank. Instead, Warrington returned to Hearn, whom he left for Frank Warren.
“I wasn’t too surprised,” Conlan said. “You could see the writing was on the wall with everything going on with Frank.
“I thought when he left Frank, he would maybe go to Top Rank, get into the American market. That would have been better for me.
“But it’s a good move, a smart move from him. He wants big fights, and Eddie Hearn has proof of getting big fights.”
Conlan feels he isn’t too far away from the champions like Warrington.
“Well, I’m ranked number one with WBO, number three with WBA, and number seven or eight with IBF. I know I’m very, very close. I feel I’m getting there. I’m almost there,” he added.
Belmar Preciado will be in the opposite corner as Conlan once again headlines at the world-famous Madison Square Garden in New York.
The Irish contingent will again be out in force as the 28-year-old pushes for a fourteenth career victory in the paid ranks.
For Warrington, a next title defense is being worked on as the 30-0 Leeds star bids to further add to his legacy.
Ex-opponent Kid Galahad recently won a final eliminator for a second crack at the IBF belt. It comes on the back of Galahad possibly claiming to win the first encounter.
Warrington squeezed through with his red belt intact. But Galahad will be confident of now being the champion’s boogieman.
That’s what’s potentially next, although some may wonder what might have been. Signing with Top Rank would have opened enormous doors for Warrington.
Fights against Conlan, Shakur Stevenson, Teofimo Lopez, and Vasyl Lomachenko could have been in his future.
Whatever happens, Conlan is firmly knocking on the door. The Irishman may be able to land his shot at world glory in 2021.