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Stephen Fulton To Move Up To 126 Lbs On Davis-Martin Undercard, May Fight For A “World” Title

Stephen Fulton To Move Up To 126 Lbs On Davis-Martin Undercard featured image
Stephen Fulton has set his sights on becoming a world champion in the 126 lbs division as he gears himself to face Luis Reynaldo Nunez on June 15th. (Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images)

Stephen Fulton will be returning from the shadow realm following his stoppage loss to Naoya Inoue last year that saw him lose both his WBC and WBO super bantamweight titles to the Japanese superstar on July 25th last year. Fulton is expected to face Luis Reynaldo Nunez from the Dominican Republic at featherweight on the undercard of the June 15th Davis-Martin event, setting the stage for the Philadelphia-born fighter to conquer a new division.

During an interview with The Ring Boxing Magazine, the former top 10 pound-for-pound fighter revealed his upcoming plans to return to the ring on June 15th, as well as a change in trainers.

I am still with my man Wahid, people need to know that, but Bozy will be training me,Fulton told The Ring. “Wahid [Rahim] is my manager. I trust him. We both think this is what is best for me.

I wanted to come back at 130 [lbs] but will come back at 126 [lbs] and the plan is for the WBA title. That’s my understanding, it will be against [Luis Reynaldo] Nunez for the vacant WBA title. I have been around Bozy a lot and we know each other really well.

I have been training and been around Bozy and Boots through the years. I know how they work and maybe there are some things that they see in me that I haven’t seen in myself yet.

By joining Bozy Ennis’ stable, the father and trainer of Jaron “Boots” Ennis (31-0, 28 KO’s), the former unified super bantamweight champion appears to be aiming to improve his lack of strength which turned out to be a glaring detriment during his 2023 match against Naoya Inoue (26-0, 23 KO’s). Under Bozy Ennis’ tutelage, IBF welterweight champion Jaron Ennis has become one of the most skilled yet hardest-hitting punchers; a trait well reflected through Ennis’ KO ratio of aprx. 90%.

A matter of convenience might also have played a role in Stephen Fulton choosing Bozy Ennis as his new trainer, with both individuals known to hail from, and reside, in the city of Philadelphia. Wahid Rahim, Fulton’s previous trainer, is still working with the former unified champion but solely in the role as a manager rather than trainer/manager as before.

Whilst reflecting on his devastating defeat to Inoue last year, Fulton revealed a rather redundant issue that may have played a role in his loss as he remarked on his troubles to make weight.

I learned a lot from that fight. I should have trained harder than I did. Other than that, I do not want to say too much about that. I think my mindset is more different. I have added to my arsenal. I am over it,” Fulton continued. “I am just completely comfortable with speaking about it. I feel like I could have done far better than I did. People pushed a narrative on me that do not know what they are talking about. I was killing myself to make 122.

I could not throw the way I wanted to throw. I will not take anything away from Inoue; he won fair and square. He is a great fighter, and he gave me an opportunity. I am just mad at myself because I know I could have fought better. I do not give a damn and too focused on anything than having fun.

I was killing myself three years ago to make the Brandon Figueroa fight. I want Bozy [Ennis] and get my guy Steve Maltepes involved. He helped me for the Paulus Ambunda fight.

With his aims now set towards the featherweight division, Stephen Fulton stated his intentions on becoming a world champion as soon as possible.

This is a huge year for me. I plan on being a three-time world champion this year,” Fulton said. “That starts June 15. That is what I was told. I can’t wait. The only one who can stop me is me. I feel like that about my last fight, too.

I could have trained and worked harder for my last fight than I did, but there is no sense in crying over spilled milk. I am ready to step into those uncomfortable spots and work hard again.

Though Stephen Fulton indicated he would face the undefeated Dominican Luis Reynaldo Nunez (19-0, 13 KO’s) for the vacant WBA featherweight title, the current holder of the title is acknowledged to be Raymond Ford (15-0-1, 8 KO’s) who will be defending his belt against Nick Ball (19-0-1, 11 KO’s) come June 1st.

Supposedly, this might mean the WBA will interject the 126 lbs division with the confusing “regular” and “super” titles, with the most likely prospect to occur being the winner of Ford-Ball becoming the WBA “super” champion, while the winner of Fulton-Nunez is set to become the WBA “regular” champion.

As usually comes paired with the WBA’s decision to create the “regular” and “super” distinctions, their motive appears steeped in corruption with WBA known to have a behind-the-scenes relationship with Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) that has led to many PBC fighters benefitting in some manner. In this case, Fulton―who fought in the 126 lbs division several times prior to establishing himself as a super bantamweight champion, appears to be maneuvered rapidly into a position to contend for a world title, despite losing rather soundly in his last fight.

Regardless of the questionable circumstances surrounding the instant world title opportunity for Stephen Fulton to enable him to become a two-division world champion, he will first have to make it past Luis Nunez―who may potentially compete in his first world title fight on June 15th.