Fresh off his recent third-round stoppage of Sylvera “Sly” Louis in their rematch, World Boxing Council (WBC) No. 1 rated bridgerweight Oscar “Kaboom” Rivas (27-1, 19 KOs) is on a special mission to not only become the first bridgerweight world champion but capture the world heavyweight crown as well.
A 2008 Colombian Olympian, Rivas is currently rated as the WBC’s No. 1-rated contender in the bridgerweight division (-224 lbs.), and No. 9 in The Ring magazine’s heavyweight rankings.
Prior to his rematch with Louis, Rivas hadn’t fought in 20 months due mainly to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions. Never-the-less, “Kaboom” remained professional, training throughout his ring absence, and now he’s positioned to fight for the inaugural WBC bridgerweight title.
“I love this sport,” Rivas said from his Montreal home. I dedicate my life to boxing. I never stopped training because I love it and I can’t live without it. I am an athlete! The pandemic didn’t make things easy for me or anybody else, especially for a natural heavyweight like me.”
“In the ring, I am having fun, and that’s what drives me. After I was able to knockdown my opponent (Louis) in the first round, my coach asked me to take advantage of the opportunity to box because I hadn’t fought in 20 months. I hadn’t stepped in the ring and that’s what I enjoy every minute of.”
Even though he’s on the precipice of winning his first world title, as a bridgerweight fighter, Rivas will not be fully satisfied without becoming a 2-division world champion.
“I want to be the bridgerweight and heavyweight World champion without a doubt,” he explained. “My mission is timeless. For some reason, the big boys in the heavyweight division don’t want to fight me. There would have been good reasons for Dillian Whyte to give me a rematch, to clear any doubts! I love Tyson Fury but when he was looking for a dance partner last December, my name was dropped first even though we had the same promoter. I can only assume that they consider I am too dangerous for them. By becoming the WBC bridgerweight World champion, I assume that those big boys will be more intrigued to fight me, and I can’t wait. Now, more than ever.”
“I am a heavyweight and I always tried to stay under 235 pounds throughout my career to exploit my speed, so the bridgerweight class became a natural fit for me. Now, I am aiming to become champion of the world in two divisions. Bring them all on!”
Rivas’ most likely will know who his opponent will be for the WBC bridgerweight title fight in June in the coming days. The names often mentioned are No. 3 rated Bryant Jennings (24-4, 14 KOs), 2-time world heavyweight title challenger, or built-up South African cruiserweight, No. 2 ranked Kevin Larena (26-1, 13 KOs).
“My team has been working very hard during this unbelievable time (pandemic) to organize a significant fight for me.” Rivas noted. “I just can’t wait to step back into the ring with anybody.”
Rivas still has unfinished business with Whyte, who is the only pro to defeat Rivas, albeit under questionable circumstances. Last August, Whyte won a 12-round unanimous decision, after been knockdown with an uppercut in the 9th round, in their vacant WBC Interim heavyweight title fight, but prior to their fight, unbeknownst to Team Rivas, Whyte had apparently tested positive for a banned substance during training camp. A UK Anti-Doping investigation somehow later cleared Whyte of any wrongdoings.
Last August, Whyte was knocked out in the fifth round by Alexander Povetkin in their WBC Interim title fight and Povetkin will defend his title this weekend in Gibraltar versus Whyte.
Oscar Rivas can’t wait to let his fists go “Kaboom” on his next opponent, whomever and whenever that is, as he continues his special mission.