Former champion Regis Prograis returns to the ring soon after his first loss. He’s not happy that his name isn’t receiving enough credit.
Regis Prograis had an amazing run in the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS) junior welterweight tournament but lost in the final round to Josh Taylor. Prograis is anxious to retake the division and isn’t happy that his name doesn’t share the love that other top boxers are receiving.
Prograis (24-1, 20 KOs) gained entry into the WBSS by stopping Juan Jose Velasco in 2018. He defeated Terry Flanagan and Kiryl Relikh, earning the WBA junior welterweight title against Relikh, but he didn’t enjoy it very long.
Prograis lost to Taylor in October of 2019, by a close majority decision. Since then, Taylor has successfully defended his WBA and IBF titles once against a badly overmatched Apinun Khongsong. He’s in prime position to fight WBC and WBO champion Jose Ramirez in a full unification contest.
Title contender Jose Zepeda also earned a mandatory WBC shot by knocking out Ivan Baranchyk in a Fight of the Year candidate.
Prograis prepares to meet Juan Heraldez (16-0-1, 10 KOs) on the Oct. 31 undercard of the Gervonta Davis vs. Leo Santa Cruz main event. It’s his first bout back since losing to Taylor. The names Taylor, Ramirez, and Zepeda are receiving lots of attention, while Prograis isn’t getting the accolades he’s used to, and he’s not happy about it.
“Yeah, it pisses me off. It pisses me off a lot,” Prograis told FanSided during a recent press conference. “I was number one at 140 for a long, long, time. I got a subscription to The Ring magazine. I used to open it every time, and my name was the number one at 140. I miss those days. I feel like I have to get it back.”
Regis Prograis is ready to make waves in the junior welterweight division, and he starts with Juan Heraldez.
Yes, Prograis lost to Taylor, but it could have easily gone the other way. According to BoxStat (via thegruelingtruth.com), Prograis threw and landed more punches than Taylor at a higher connect percentage. Statistics don’t tell the whole picture of the fight, but they’re a metric that helps evaluate performances.
Taylor had the crowd in his corner. The Scottish boxer fought close to home at the O2 Arena in London. Prograis had to fight Taylor and his fanbase simultaneously and performed admirably despite not receiving the decision. He feels like he’s still undefeated.
“No, just like I say, I feel like I won,” said Prograis. “I’m not gonna lie. I fought in a whole different country in front of 20,000 people. When I was over there, it was literally, y’all know about big crowds, it was 20,000 people. Everybody was against me. I came over there, and I don’t feel like I lost the fight. It was close. I won’t say I got robbed, of course not, but I still don’t feel like I lost the fight.”
Heraldez is a tough opponent to face for Prograis after being dormant for a year. The pandemic hasn’t helped, and Prograis amicably split with his former promoter DiBella Entertainment. Prograis and Lou DiBella remain friends, as Prograis now fights under the PBC banner for the first time. He’s on a one-fight deal but hopes a strong performance will open the doors to a long and prosperous relationship.
Prograis has all the talent to take over the division. He just needs a shot. He’s confident that a win over Heraldez will be the start of his climb back up the junior welterweight mountain.
Regis Prograis fights Juan Herladez on the undercard of Gervonta Davis vs. Leo Santa Cruz main event on Showtime pay-per-view on Saturday, Oct. 31. Coverage begins at 9 p.m. ET.