IBF featherweight champion Luis Alberto Lopez has vowed to shatter Michael Conlan's world title ambitions at the SSE Arena on Saturday night.
'El Venado' has been oozing confidence in the build-up and perhaps that is to be expected considering he went to Leeds and dethroned Josh Warrington in December, so travelling into hostile territory for his maiden defence holds no fears.
He was given a warm welcome to Wednesday's public workout at the Kennedy Centre, but it is likely to be a lot less cordial on Saturday at an almost sold-out arena with Conlan eager to make his reign a short one.
However, the 29-year-old from Mexicali believe's he has Conlan's number and expects to finish the job before the second half of the fight.
"I didn't expect to fight here in Ireland but I'm very excited and ready to go," he said.
"I'm just looking at the work I have in front of me and that's Michael Conlan. I'm here to win the fight early and to do my job, so I'm ready to go.
"Since I started to prepare for the fight, I turned the switch on and as I've said, I'm here to win early.
"He is going to try to take advantage of the distance, but we are working on closing that and putting hands to the body.
"I'm here to press the fight from the very first round and end the fight in the middle rounds."
Across the pond we go 🔥🏆#LopezConlan | MAY 27 | @ESPNPlus pic.twitter.com/7QVxrGiFUG— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) May 22, 2023
The SSE Arena is not the only venue for a world featherweight tangle on Saturday as immediately after the Belfast battle that is due to start as early as 9pm, Mauricio Lara and Leigh Wood will meet for the second time after the Mexican dethroned Wood for the WBA belt three months ago.
Throw in another Mexican, WBC king Rey Vargas, and Cuba's Robeisy Ramirez and the 126lb division is red hot.
Of course, Lopez has ambitions of being considered number one, but to do that he knows he must triumph on Saturday and then face his peers.
"There are a lot of good fighters at 126 lbs like (Mauricio) 'Bronco' Lara, Robeisy Ramirez and Rey Vargas, so I can't say I'm the best until I face them," he insists.