Lawrence Okolie Wants Mairis Briedis Title Unification Bout

Lawrence Okolie and Mairis Briedis

  • Lawrence Okolie knocked out Kzysztof Glowacki last Saturday to win the vacant WBo cruiserweight title.
  • Okolie is the first fighter from Anthony Joshua’s 258 Management firm to win a world title.
  • The 28-year old’s journey from flipping burgers at McDonalds to flipping jaws inside the boxing ring is documented in a book entitled “Dare to Change Your Life” which he wrote during the start of the pandemic.

Lawrence Okolie knocked out Krzysztof Glowacki on Saturday night to become a world champion for the first time. But before everything has sunk in for him, he is already calling out a fellow champion for a title unification.

Per Okolie:

“I feel like I would like to fight someone like Briedis next. I think out of the champions, Briedis is the one that I would most like to go in next with. That would be unified in 17 fights and 42 career fights. Obviously any champion that Eddie can get, but the one I would be looking for is Briedis.”

Briedis is Mairis Briedis, the 36-year old Latvian fighter who is currently the IBF cruiserweight world champion and Ring cruiserweight champion. Briedis has not fought since winning the WBSS cruiserweight tournament in September 2020 and has been contemplating a move to the heavyweight division. But with a star in Okolie born on Saturday night, he might change his mind.

From Flipping Burgers to Flipping Jaws

Okolie entered Saturday’s bout against Krzysztof Glowacki as a big betting favorite in the best boxing betting sites. Walking out to his own rap single titled “TKO”, he lived up to that billing by knocking out former world champion Glowacki in the sixth round to capture the WBO cruiserweight championship in just his 16th professional fight.

The 28-year old from Hackney pushed Glowacki back with strong jabs in the early rounds. Glowacki, who was shorter by five inches, could not close the distance as Okolie looked content to box from afar. In fourth round however, Glowacki suffered a cut by his right eye after the British boxer started to unload. In the sixth, Okolie delivered a thunderous right hand that dropped Glowacki flat on his back, forcing referee Marcus McDonnell to wave off the fight at the 0:46 mark of the 6th round.

With the victory, Okolie joins the likes of Tony Bellew, David Haye, and Johnny Nelson as British boxers to hold a world title in the 200lb weight class. He is also the first client fighter from Anthony Joshua’s 258 Management sports company to win a world title. Not bad for someone who has gone from flipping burgers to flipping jaws.

Dare to Change Your Life

Okolie was working at McDonalds when he was inspired to take up boxing watching Anthony Joshua win Olympic Gold in London back in 2012. That story is documented in a book he wrote during the start of the pandemic when sports was halted for three months. The book entitled “Dare to Change Your Life” will be released next month, on April 8th.

Indeed Okolie has changed his life, in such a short period of time. He turned pro in 2017, won the Commonwealth and British cruiserweight titles the following year, and the European cruiserweight belt in 2019. After beating Glowacki’s countryman Nikodem Jezewski last December, he became WBO international cruiserweight champion and set up a title fight for the vacant world title.

Known as “The Sauce”, Okolie’s call-out of Briedis is just the first step in his monumental goal to unify the cruiserweight championships. After that, he wants to follow in Oleksandr Usyk’s footsteps by moving up to the heavyweight division. It’s an ambition plan, really. But Okolie hopes that the best chapters of his boxing life have yet to be written.

Shane Acedera / Author

Shane grew up watching the Magic & Bird rivalry but ended up rooting for Detroit's Bad Boys team in the 1990s NBA. He loves to tell sports stories and has been writing about sports since high school. When Shane isn't busy jotting down his thoughts, he's just chillin' at home with his wife Rocelle and their two dogs named Horry and Fisher. He recently added a new family member, adopting a handsome retired K-9 named Ranger.

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