Newly crowned IBF cruiserweight world champion Jai Opetaia, once healed, will be hunting for the biggest fights possible in his weight class.
On Saturday night at the Gold Coast Convention Centre in Australia, Opetaia came in as a big underdog and shocked the world by outboxing Mairis Briedis over twelve rounds to secure a unanimous decision to capture the IBF strap.
Entering that fight, Briedis was regarded as the top cruiserweight in the weight class.
During the action, Opetaia suffered a fractured jaw. The jaw was broken on one side in the second round and further injured in the late rounds of the fight.
"Opetaia would have to be considered the toughest fighter on the planet after continuing on from round two with one side of his jaw broken, then the other side broken late in the fight and still winning rounds against a vicious puncher in Briedis," Opetaia's promoter Dean Lonergan told Sky Sports.
Once that injury is fully healed, Opetaia may target WBO cruiserweight champion Lawrence Okolie.
"When his injury is healed, I have no doubt he will want to fight and beat the best in the world to build his legacy," the promoter said.
"I'm exploring options. Jai's goal after winning this fight is to win the WBO belt and if the deal is right, and all parties are on the same page, it's a fight Jai wants. Jai has the ambition to unify the division, and given he is now rated the best cruiserweight in the world, that is a reality."
Once Briedis was defeated and a new champion was crowned, Okolie called for a unification bout with Opetaia.
"I want that work immediately," Okolie stated.