Luzoho promised the most impressive debut in the history of Irish boxing on the ‘Rise Again’ card and, while it’s hard to rank or quantify first pro appearances, ‘The Butcher Boy’ certainly did his best to deliver.
The ring walk alone stood out. There was masks, flags, a severed head, an entourage, a party atmosphere and possibly the first ever performer, Rablo Luccii, to successfully rap a fighter to the ring.
Then there was a debut stoppage win over a fighter with an impressive 6-1 record.
Granted some detractors might point out that Sam Jones, with no amateur background couldn’t labelled a typical prospect, but he certainly wasn’t the typical journey man opponent that even the most gifted of fighters are allowed as debutantes.
It was an eye-catching introduction to the game in every aspect but, for St Michael’s Inchicore man, it wasn’t perfect.
“I would have preferred if he was unbeaten and I was the one to put that ‘1’ in the loss column on his record but you can’t ask for everything,” Luzoho told Irish-boxing.com in a dressing room that had to be cleared of his supporters post the win.
The response was typical of the Irish-Congolese welter, whose eventual aim is light welter. The switch hitter wants tests so he can impress.
Indeed, when he found out at relatively late notice he was going to debut against a fighter with a winning record instead of a journeyman, rather than feel nerves or pressure, he instantly sent thanks to heaven.
“When Conor [Slater, Assassin Promotions] told me I was facing this guy, honestly, I swear on everything I hold dear, I looked up to the sky and said ‘thank you God for this opportunity’.”
“I really wanted to test myself and god gave me a tough opponent, an opponent that allowed me to show my skill set.”
The Steven O’Rourke-trained fighter believes Jones granted him the chance to make an impression. In fact, some are suggesting the single victory may push him toward the top half of the top 10 in one of Ireland’s best divisions.
It’s a great start, but is just that, a start claims Luzoho, who has big ambitions.
“Hopefully I made a debut that no one will forget that’s what I wanted to do. Look it up, I don’t think anyone has done it like that. I do plan to be the next black star of Ireland.”
“I want to represent Ireland. Ireland and Congo gave me everything and I want to put Ireland on the map. I want to be the face of boxing. It’s not easy to achieve, but I am aiming high, why not?”
While those in the know will hold up Jones and the manner of the victory over him to point out the Assassin fighter’s prospects, there will be those who attended that will be full of ring walk talk.
Just 24 hours after Josh Kennedy’s attempt to go large ahead of his fight with new WBO European super bantamweight champion Tyrone McCullagh backfired, Luzoho went bigger and it paid off.
“I told you I was planning to make history and that is what I tried to do,” he said.
“There is no point in being a pro boxer if your not going to entertain. I feel like most fighters are forgetting that you have to entertain the people coming to see you.”
“People pay hard earned cash to come and watch you fight. I know my fans would support me anyway but I want them to feel they got their money’s worth,” he continued before expressing real gratitude to the following he brought.
“I want give a massive thanks to all those who supported me. Those who came from Coolock and Blanchardstown. Honestly, they helped me make tonight what it was. You can’t do this without fans they are part of the team really and we are on this journey together.”
“We will have more nights like this and I promise it will get bigger and better.”
There are those who have suggested that matching Luzoho will now prove difficult after such an eye-catching win – and there are no doubts Assassin won’t be keen to take another early big risk with a potential ticket seller and star.
So, in that regard, the 23-year-old may have to get used to a spell of learning fights but that, he claims, won’t affect his approach both in or out of the ring.
“I will listen to Assassin I will listen to Steven [O’Rourke]. If they say I need to slow it down a bit and take a testing journeyman this win won’t have a negative effect.”
“As long as I am representing Ireland and representing the Congo I will always be motivated to perform.”
Photo Credit: Ricardo Guglielminotti – The Fighing Irish (@ThefIrish)