Michael McKinson believes a victory over Chris Kongo will prove his status as a top welterweight contender & vows to seize on this “golden ticket” opportunity.
McKinson (19-0, 2 KOs) looks to become WBO Global champion when he collides with fellow unbeaten Brit, Kongo (12-0, 7 KOs) on the undercard of Dillian Whyte’s crucial rematch with Alexander Povetkin in Gibraltar on Saturday night, live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and Ireland and DAZN globally.
‘The Problem’ has won all 19 of his professional fights and has long-desired a meeting with his domestic rival and firmly believes he has the beating of everyone in the country, in a division which also includes the likes of Conor Benn and Josh Kelly.
“It’s a great time to be in the mix of great names in the welterweight division domestically,” Mckinson told proboxing-fans.com.
“But, I believe with beating Chris Kongo puts me towards the top of that tree, like I believe the top, but obviously there are some top fighters in here.
“But, I think once I beat Chris Kongo I’ve proven I’m definitely top tier.
“He’s very tall, he’s very athletic, he’s very strong and he’s fit as well, all round he’s a very good fighter.
“But, if you look at it there’s only one problem in that division and that’s me. I’m a problem for absolutely anyone and I really do believe a well-prepared Michael McKinson beats them all domestically.”
‘2 Slick’ claimed the WBO Global crown with a ninth round stoppage win over Luther Clay in a career-best victory on the undercard of Whyte’s first meeting with Povetkin in August.
The Londoner, who has won all 12 of his professional bouts has been sparring with unified super lightweight world champion, Josh Taylor in preparation for this showdown, however McKinson, who landed three knockdowns on route to a unanimous decision win over Martin Harkin in October believes his experience will prove crucial.
“I’ve got the experience on him in a professional ring,” said the 26-year-old.
“If you look at it my last five opponents have a combined record of 72 wins and three losses. People don’t give my record enough credit.
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“He’s fought 11 no-ones and Luther Clay, so if you want to compare records I win all day long.
“I’m experienced enough to know I’m going to win without a shadow of a doubt.
“I’ve put in the work. Whatever he wants to bring let him bring it. If he wants to walk through me let him, he won’t. 100% he won’t.”
The Portsmouth man is managed by MTK Global and fights on a Matchroom bill for the first time.
McKinson is ranked at #6 by the WBO in pursuit of WBO welterweight world champion, Terence Crawford and says he can cement his position on this kind of platform with a win.
“Beating Chris Kongo is my golden ticket.
“Not fighting him, I’ve got to beat him and beating him is my golden ticket and it’ll be just the platform I’ll need to push my career on.
“This is my seventh year as a professional, its took me 20 fights to get on this stage.
“So, I’ve done it the long and the hard way, but we’re finally here. Beating him is my golden ticket to stay here.”
Watch the full interview with Michael McKinson below: