John Joe Nevin backs ‘dream’ opponent to stop Santa Cruz

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Their careers have taken different paths since they turned pro, but John Joe Nevin would like to bump into Carl Frampton before he finishes his boxing journey.

Indeed, the London 2012 silver medalist claims ‘The Jackal’ represents his dream opponent.

Compare the pair’s amateur career and Nevin comes out on top, in fairness, the Mullingar native would probably defeat any Irish amateur in a Top Trumps style battle.

However, while Frampton is preparing for his second massive fight of 2016 and has banked Celtic, Commonwealth, European,and World honours, Nevin’s paid career hasn’t taken off as of yet.

A double leg break set the 27 year old back but despite recovering to fight again he hasn’t been in the ring since last November. He is expected to return in August and, like most fighters around the featherweight mark, is targeting a future fight with Frampton.

Speaking to the Irish News Nevin was asked what opponent would be his dream fight and he coyly replied: “A very good friend of mine, he’s a world champion, he’s from Belfast.”

“We used to have good spars and he gave me a good write-up in The Irish News when he went pro – he said he went pro because of John Joe Nevin. Carl’s the one I’d love to box.”

The former amateur standout also thinks Frampton can defy the bookies when he challenges Leo Santa Cruz for the featherweight WBA World strap in New York on July 30th.

The Mullingar Shuffler thinks ‘The Jackal’ could have too much power for the three-weight World champ.

“I think he can – and I think it mightn’t go the distance either,” he predicted.

“I think Carl can get him early. That power will come up. Carl has tremendous power, take it from me and when he gets in the ring with Santa Cruz, he’s going to feel that.”

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Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years