Jose Lopes

Jose Lopes
David Haye has some outstanding achievements in his career - notably unifying the cruiserweight division and picking up a version of the world heavyweight title.  These days his career is more about will he or won't he make a comeback.  He doesn't need to in the eyes of trainer Don Charles, who is convinced that he has the new David Haye under his charge.  "I look up to David Haye" Lopes tells me.  "He unified the cruiserweight division, that's my aim.  My all time favourite though - Ali."
Lopes is only 3 fights in to his professional career already carrying 2 KO victories.  The London bas, Angolan born fighter has an idea though of how he sees his career route going.  "I'm out again in September.  That's going to be against my toughest opponent yet.  Then maybe again in December, and this first fight of next year I want to be for the Southern area belt."  An impressive aim in what would only be his 6th fight.  Lopes does have plenty of amateur experience though - 40 fights before turning pro.  What triggered the turn over the paid ranks? 
"I had 40 amateur fights with about 30 wins and 10 knock outs.  I thin the pro game will suit me more.  I've boxed since I was 15 years old - I've got a bronze medal from the African Championships.  It was the right time for me, I know I will be suited to professional boxing.  It's more about getting to hurt other people - and I know that if I land that right hand I will hurt people.  I love it."
Goodwin Promotions is who Lopes has entrusted to start his professional career.  With a stable of promising fighters as well as some old heads it seems a natural fit.  Lopes may sounds like a lot of brawn, but there's a brain to back this man up.  He's currently got 2 years left of a university degree in Electrical Engineering.  "It's hard - I had to cancel 3 fights this year because of exams".
Brains, brawn.  The lad has it all.  Turns out that he is multi talented in the sports arena too - alongside his youth boxing days at Dagenham ABC he was also on the books at West Ham Football Club.  The football was in his blood - his dad was a professional in Portugal.  "I got bored of the football in the end, I wanted a change."
It seems the change has worked out well for him.  At six foot four, Jose is a big cruiserweight with natural attributes to back up the training and skill.   He's also getting the best training possible working with Don Charles, and sparring seems to have been going well. 

"I met Don at the end of last year - it just clicked with him straight away.  We got along so well and now he makes me feel like I can't be beaten.  I'm in the gym sparring the likes of Cleverley, Camacho and Conquest and I've been holding my own, more so than they expected!"
Mixing with such experienced fighters will only serve Lopes well.   Whether he can emulate Haye's achievements will be seen in time,but with his natural size, world class training team and a brain to back it up, it could be a bright future for Lopes.

Follow Jose on Twitter @lopesboxing