By: Hans Themistode
In years past, the Heavyweight division revolved around one name, Klitschko. Whether is was Wladimir or his brother Vitale, the Klitschko’s dominated Heavyweight boxing. That era is now behind us. There are numerous fighters in the division who have something to prove.
New Heavyweight contender Otto Wallin has been viewed as one of the up and coming big guys. Standing six feet five inches and sporting an undefeated record of 20 wins with no defeats and 13 big wins coming via knockout, you can see why he is thought of so highly.
This Friday night on July 12th, Wallin will be taking on the biggest test of his career when he takes on BJ Flores (34-4-1, 21 KOs). The aforementioned Flores was last seen in the ring in August of 2018, when he went up against the undefeated Trevor Bryan. Flores was subsequently knocked out in the fourth round of that contest. Wallin is determined to make his own statement come Friday night.
“The main thing is to get the win, but I want to break him down and stop him,” said Wallin. “This fight is on Showtime so I want to show that I deserve to keep fighting on this network.”
For Wallin, he is hoping that his fight against Flores last a bit longer than his previous contest against Nick Kisner. That bout was ruled a no contest after a clash of heads in the opening round led to cut and vision problems for Kisner. Before that contest, Walling struggled with activity as he was roughly out for a year prior to that contest. His stretches of inactivity have not been through fault of his own. Concerns of ring rust have not entered the mind of Wallin, but he is hoping to become much more active this year.
“I’ve been inactive in the past because my contract with my promotor had expired. I had other bouts like fighting for the European title but it kept getting pushed back. When it was time to fight my trainer got attacked in New York and broke his jaw, so we had to cancel the fight. Thankfully all of that is behind us now and I just want to be active this year. As far as ring rust goes, in my last contest I would have liked to have gotten a few more rounds in of course but I’m not concerned about ring rust. I still got the experience from walking down that isle and getting in that ring. I just want to look at it in a positive light.”
His opponent BJ Flores, will have a major edge in terms of experience and level of opposition. Those factors don’t intimidate Wallin in the slightest. Instead, he is looking forward to the test so that he can prove that he what it takes to compete with anyone.
“He’s the most experienced fighter I’ve ever fought. He’s had several championship fights so he is definitely the best fighter that I’ve ever faced also but this is what I need. If I can put on a great performance then that will show that I belong with some of the best guys in the division.”
Wallin isn’t held in the same regard as fighters such as Adam Kownacki, Jarrell Miller and Dillian Whyte. However, with a win this Friday night that could all change. With the Heavyweight division having so much parity, Wallin is thrilled to be apart of this era of Heavyweight boxing. He is also patiently waiting on his own big fight to prove his worth.
“I think the division is great,” recalled Wallin. “It’s really booming right now, there are a lot of big fights to be made. I just need to keep working and keep improving so that when my time comes I’ll be ready for these guys.”
Wallin’s first step in his quest for Heavyweight glory starts this Friday night at the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, Washington. If he can make a statement, it won’t be long until he gets those big fights he is craving.