Richard Commey's first IBF lightweight world title defense has been officially announced.
Top Rank announced that Commey will defend his title against former world champion Raymundo Beltran on June 28 at the Pechanga Resort Casino in Temecula, California. The fight will headline a Top Rank on ESPN card.
Commey won the belt back in February after it was vacated by Mikey Garcia in the aftermath of his win over Robert Easter Jr. back in 2018. Commey previously challenged for the title back in 2016, but was unsuccessful, losing a split decision to Easter. After losing a second consecutive fight to Denis Shafikov later that year, Commey won three straight before his title win over Isa Chaniev.
Originally, Commey was supposed to face unified WBA and WBO champion Vasiliy Lomachenko on April 12 in a three-belt unification, but Commey suffered an injury during the win over Chaniev and was unable to get ready in time to face Lomachenko. Since then, Lomachenko defended his titles against Anthony Crolla and was recently ordered to face Luke Campbell for the vacant WBC title which was also previously held by Garcia.
Beltran once held the WBO lightweight title last year, but in his first title defense, he lost a unanimous decision to Jose Pedraza in Glendale, Arizona. Since then, Beltran moved up to junior welterweight, defeating Hiroki Okada to win the WBC Continental Americas and WBO Intercontinental titles in February.
While Commey will be preparing for his fight against Beltran, there is a fight reportedly in the works between Teofimo Lopez and Masayoshi Nakatani taking place in July. The planned Lopez vs. Nakatani fight is an IBF lightweight title eliminator where the winner would be the mandatory challenger to the Commey vs. Beltran winner.
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