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Frankie Gomez, Jason Quigley, Erickson Lubin make the list

Frankie Gomez (L), Jose Ramirez (C), Jason Quigley (R)

A look at five of the world's best young fighters who are yet to earn the exposure to match their promise.

Frankie Gomez

Frankie Gomez impressed against Mauricio Herrera
Image: Gomez (R) impressed against Mauricio Herrera


Age: 24
From: East Los Angeles
Division: Welterweight
Record: 21-0-KO13

The man known as 'Pitbull' is still tender in years but has experience far beyond. Despite a spotless record, Gomez has already been through some of the downs to go with his ups; a scheduled 'breakout' fight against Humberto Soto on a Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez undercard was cancelled because he weighed in at a colossal 6.5lbs over the agreed limit.

Golden Boy Promotions paid a hefty price to sign up Gomez upon turning professional, with Oscar De La Hoya asserting: "Gomez is one of the best amateur boxers I've seen in a long time. He's a true blue chip prospect and he has all the tools to become a world champion and a star in this game." High praise indeed.

Since the debacle over the Soto bout, Gomez has wisely stepped up to welterweight and looked full of class in easily outpointing Mauricio Herrera in Las Vegas in May. Some were critical of his inability to convert his superiority into a stoppage win, but they may have overlooked the fact that Herrera has beaten the likes Ruslan Provodnikov and taken the likes of Danny Garcia and Mike Alvarado the distance.

Jose Ramirez

Jose Ramirez is heading for world titles
Image: Ramirez is heading quickly for world level


Age: 23
From: Avenal, CA
Division: Super-lightweight
Record: 18-0-KO13

Having represented the United States at the 2012 Olympics as their top-ranked amateur lightweight, Ramirez turned professional and stopped six of his first eight opponents inside the very first round. Four years and no defeats later, his promoters at Top Rank are ready to step him up towards the big time.

Sparring sessions with WBC world champion Viktor Postol are already firmly under his belt, and Ramirez is demanding a clash with a former world champion or fellow undefeated prospect before the year is out. He's yet to fight a 12-rounder and only his last two have been scheduled for 10, but Ramirez's knockout percentage of 72% suggests he's ready for serious assignments.

Postol and Terence Crawford do battle for divisional supremacy on July 23. Ramirez is already ranked by the WBC and the winner of that potential classic plus more recently-crowned champions Eduard Troyanovsky and Ricky Burns are likely to find him fast-advancing in their rear-view mirrors sooner rather than later.

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Erickson Lubin

Erickson Lubin celebrates his latest victory
Image: Erickson Lubin celebrates his latest victory


Age: 20
From: Orlando, FL
Division: Super-welterweight
Record: 15-0-KO11

The youngest fighter in our list by some distance, Lubin has earned the nickname of 'The Hammer' as he continues to seize all opportunities to let his power shine. A southpaw possessing explosiveness in both hands, he presents a towering and athletic threat to any opponent.

Lubin had been favoured to win a gold at this summer's 2016 Rio Olympic Games but opted instead to turn professional. He had begun boxing at the tender age of four and with dreams of emulating the likes of De La Hoya, Floyd Mayweather Jr and Meldrick Taylor, appears to have everything he needs to make the decision a successful one.

There's certainly no shortage of ambition in the youngster. He's already expressed a desire to face divisional big guns such as Alvarez, Jermell and Jermall Charlo and Erislandy Lara. How ready he is to challenge for world titles at this very moment is open to discussion (and it would be foolish to rush), but the likelihood of him winning one eventually certainly appears high.

Murat Gassiev

Murat Gassiev is a cruiserweight on the rise
Image: Murat Gassiev is a cruiserweight on the rise


Age: 22
From: Vladikavkaz, Russia
Division: Cruiserweight
Record: 23-0-KO17

It's a warm heat given the likes of Oleksandr Usyk, Ievgen Khytrov and Artur Beterbiev are all surging towards the top - but Gassiev has youth firmly on his side in the argument over the east's brightest prospect. Nicknamed simply 'Iron', he may be just about the last name on the wish-lists of cruiserweight world champions.

In a twist that may prove an unfortunate one for Denis Lebedev, the IBF have ordered their belt-holder to begin talks to fight Gassiev. Furthermore, although he won his ranking title in his hometown, Gassiev has already begun building his name in the States with a quartet of impressive knockouts.

Should Gassiev end up dethroning Lebedev and thereby adding the weight of two world titles to his growing reputation, a colossal unification clash with WBC king Tony Bellew becomes a genuine possibility. With natural talent so clear and such a huge amount of improvement possible, he could well enter the pound-for-pound reckoning a few years down the line. 

Jason Quigley

Jason Quigley
Image: Quigley (L) has the blessing of Oscar De La Hoya


Age: 25
From: Donegal, Ireland
Division: Middleweight
Record: 11-0-KO9

Another snared by Golden Boy at the outset of his move into paid boxing, Quigley is a man on a mission and has outlined an intention to earn clashes with Chris Eubank Jr and WBO world champion Billy Joe Saunders. Premature that may be, but the Irishman has done little wrong so far.

After a solid amateur career, during which he earned three European golds and a silver at the 2013 World Amateur Championships in Almaty, Quigley entered the professional ranks as hot property. De La Hoya beamed: "You can tell immediately that he's someone who knows the game, and his amateur background is serving him well as a professional. I have no doubt that he will be a world champion one day."

Quigley stepped up to a 10-rounder for the first time in May and produced a flowing shutout points victory over James De La Rosa (23-4-KO13). Following a debut in Mexico, Quigley may be yet to venture far from his Los Angeles base but don't be surprised if an Irishman trained in America soon visits England and blasts to prominence.

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