Dennis Hogan wants to take on The Beast – but delay expected

Dennis Hogan [27(7)-1(0)-1] isn’t afraid of the monster and is ready to face Jaime Munguia if Liam Smith isn’t keen.

The giant Mexican announced himself as a potential star of the future by demolishing the man who beat fight legend Miguel Cotto, Sadam Ali, to claim the WBO light middleweight title in the most destructive of fashion last Saturday.

The manner of the win and 21-year-old’s sheer size caught fan attention around world, indeed social media was awash with so much talk of ‘a beast’ and ‘monster’ you’d be forgiven for believing King Kong or Godzilla had made another appearance in New York.

Irish world title hopeful Dennis Hogan was ringside to witness the massacre but wasn’t put off by what he saw.

Watching with a more educated eye than most, ‘The Hurricane’ saw things he could exploit and noted Ali would make most light middles look big.

It might be a script any future Munguia opponent may revert too but Hogan’s actions speak louder than words and directly after the fight they informed the WBO they are ready to step in and fight the new champion if Liam Smith can’t or won’t avail of his mandatory status.

“Listen, up close he looked like a monster, but Ali is 5’8″ and really only a welterweight so he [Munguia] will always look big against someone of that size,” Hogan’s promoter Paul Keegan told

“Dennis was picking his game from ringside and was very confident after he would out box him. Munguia looked very slow but very very powerful.”

“We told Golden Boy that, whoever wins, Dennis would face them next If Liam Smith can fulfil his mandatory. I wrote to the WBO to say the same too.”

Hogan may be willing, but it seems he will have to wait. Former champion Smith, who was meant to be Ali’s first defence but pulled out after an allergic reaction, is next in line, which pushes the Kildare man’s dream fight back that bit further.

“The WBO sent out instructions for the Smith-Munguia fight to be made in the next 30 days. I also received clarification on Dennis’s position and, because of Smith’s injury, it looks like Dennis won’t get his shot until the end of this year or early next year. Smith’s injury has put everything back six to nine months,” Keegan added explaining the current lay of the land.

“We will have to wait until that fight [Munguia-Smith] happens in September and then make an official challenge in writing to the winner. Should Liam win we would look at three options. If they are keen, UK, Ireland, or Australia but there might be a good possibility it could be in Ireland whether that be North or South remains to be seen.”

There was a slight chance ‘The Hurricane’ could have stepped in as a late Smith replacement and challenged Ali last week. Keegan admits there was regret the Australian based WBO #2 wasn’t in the ring Saturday, but reveals taking the fight at that notice wasn’t an option.”

“After a defeating two top 10 fighters in quick succession his team had ordered Hogan to take a break and the inquiry came while he was out of the gym and on holiday.”

“There was a little regret as Dennis would have put Ali away on Saturday but it was impossible. Dennis was on his first real break in nearly two years and needed to get away from boxing for a month.”

While Keegan went to New York to try and enhance Hogan’s world title hopes he did take time to explore further his Emerald Exiles idea.

The promoter managed to talk to Golden Boy’s Eric Gomez regarding a number of subjects and it seems they would be interested in a show that allows their Irish talent to fight at home.

“We also had a very productive meeting with Golden Boy president Eric Gomez, who stated he would love to be involved in a show in Ireland at some stage as they have Spike [O’Sullivan], [Jason] Quigley and [Aaron] McKenna under their banner now.”


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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on, Boxing News,, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: