Arum promises World title fights for Belfast trio

The only thing Jamie Douglas can predict about his debut on Celtic Clash 8 this 

Belfast could be the proud home of three reigning world champions by this time next year according to Bob Arum.

The Top Rank boss is now working with Michael Conlan, Carl Frampton and Ryan Burnett and believes he can secure world shots for all three.

Arum was in Belfast last week to officially announce Conlan’s Rio revenge clash with Vladimir Nikitin and also took time to address the futures of the more recent Belfast names to join his books.

In terms of former two weight world champion Frampton, Arum is confident a WBO world title fight at featherweight will be secured this side of the New Year.

frampton top rank

Oscar Valdez is the reigning champion and faces a June 8 defense, if he wins and remains at feather then a fight with ‘The Jackal’ is easily made. If as predicted he moves up in weight then Arum is confident the oldest of this three Belfast fighters will fight for the vacant title.

“Oscar could well move up a division after his fight on June 8 and that would mean that Carl might well fight for the vacant world title. I would see that happening before the end of the year,” Arum told David Kelly of the Belfast Telegraph. 

“Carl will have his next fight on August 10 or 24 and then we will see what happens after that. Carl’s a big name in the States because of those two fights he had with Leo Santa Cruz and he’s an exciting fighter.

Michael Conlan will be on the world title pathway once he over comes Nikitin at the Feile in Falls parks predicts the long serving promoter.

Arum suggests a world title shot at Madison Square Garden on St Patrick’s Day 2020 is ideal and a possibility.

“After this fight with Nikitin we will put Michael into more significant fights than he has been in and get him pushed up the world rankings. I would think early next year he will be fighting for a world title,” added Arum.

The latest Belfast fighter to agree terms with Top Rank is Ryan Burnett and he too isn’t far of a world title tilt suggests the respected promoter.

The former unified bantamweight world champion fought at super bantamweight last weekend and is said to be exploring options at that weight.

However, Arum has the winner of the World Boxing Super Series at bantamweight in mind meaning Burnett could face the winner of recent foe Nonito Donaire and big puncher Naoya Inoue.


“It won’t be long before Burnett is back in the world title mix. We have just signed Inoue, who I believe will win the World Boxing Super Series final and we could then put Burnett in with him.

“There’s also the possibility of a rematch with Donaire, which I think the fans would like to see because it’s a case of unfinished business because Burnett lost his title due to a freak injury.”


Jonny Stapleton contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: