Josh Kelly comeback begins on May 13, but big fights and world titles remain the ultimate goal for ‘Pretty Boy’.
Having signed with Wasserman Boxing the 28-year-old’s first fight under their banner will be shown live on Channel 5 from Indigo at the O2, London.
The super-welterweight’s new chapter will aim to banish the memories of his last bout, a stoppage loss to David Avanesyan 14 months ago.
“We all know Avanesyan is a top fighter, world level,” Kelly’s promoter Kalle Sauerland told Boxing Social’s Ryan Elliott.
“I don’t think he was necessarily pushed too far. You take those risks and sometimes you come off worse, but you got to break a few eggs to make an omelette.”
Sauerland’s ability and openness to work with other promoters could pave the way for some big domestic fights for Kelly. The 2016 Olympian, an avid Sunderland supporter, would be keen on a North-East derby with Newcastle fan Lewis Ritson.
“That’s huge,” Kelly said of a fight against the Geordie super-lightweight.
“If he’s willing to go to 147 and I come down that fight sells out St James’ [Park] and Stadium of Light twice. That’s how big the support is, that’s how big the rivalry is. That’s how loyal the supporters are. I’m red and white he’s black and white. Course it’s a fight that can’t happen.”
And Kelly says he would have no problem going into Newcastle to take on Ritson.
“A little away day? We haven’t had a derby in a while. It can happen.”
One name that had been regularly linked to Kelly before the Avanesyan loss was Conor Benn. The Londoner often called for a showdown with his then Matchroom stable-mate but their careers have now taken different paths. Benn is on course for a world title shot at welterweight while Kelly is attempting to get his career back on track. But could a Benn fight still happen one day?
“I can’t see why not. 147 or 154, I think we will cross paths 100%. I’m here to make big fights happen, that’s definitely a name we’ll come across in the future.”
Watch Boxing Social’s interview with Josh Kelly here.