Big punching Carl Frampton has sent a stark warning to all his rivals that he is hitting harder than ever before.
On the back of his four minutes 38 seconds demolition of WBC World number one Hugo Cazares at the Odyssey Arena, Frampton is now looking ahead to a showdown with World super-bantamweight champion Leo Santa Cruz within the next six months.
WBC super-bantam king Santa Cruz has said that he wants to face Frampton next and the Belfast man is relishing the thought of testing out his frightening power on the chin of the USA-based Mexican.
"I think I am getting more powerful – you can see that with the weights that I'm lifting in the gym, leading up to this fight I was breaking my PBs. I did a squat of 120kg which for someone of my size is pretty good I think," said Frampton.
"You know I don't usually get rid of people so early. I suss them out and have a look and stop in the second half of fights but I got Cazares out inside two rounds, which sends out a massive statement because the guy hadn't been stopped since 1999.
"I thought I would have stopped him after eight or nine rounds but it just shows you the power that I have. If you keep knocking people out it just allows your confidence to grow. I'm a big believer in my power and no matter how hard a fight gets I always know that I can end it because I have knockout power.
"It looked good when I watched it back because he threw a jab and I slipped it and landed the left hook, I can't really remember it – it was just instinctive.
"The punch I knocked out Kiko Martinez out with was good too and again it was instinctive – just like this one."
Cazares tried to make an issue out of the timing of the stoppage, as he sat on one knee while counted out by referee Victor Loughlin but that was just dismissed by Frampton, who given another opportunity would have done some serious damage to the proud Mexican.
"I know he doesn't speak English but he's been around this game long enough to know how to count to 10!" said Frampton.
"The fact is the referee counted to 10 and he was still on one knee and that means the fight is over, simple as that.
"Now it's about Santa Cruz. He wants to be in blockbuster fights and me against him would be huge. It is the most exciting fight out there right now and I think he will want it even more now.
"If I have to go to America to fight him I am up for that. I will go to America at some stage, it has always been my dream to fight in the States, places like Madison Square Garden and Las Vegas.
"Nowhere can be as noisy as Belfast, the atmosphere just gets bigger and better and as soon as I got on to the ramp, I was just busting to get fighting. I was just trying to imagine what it will be like for a World title.
"The support has been fantastic. I have the loudest bunch of supporters in Europe without doubt.
"I chose the song 'You're love lifts me higher' for my ring entrance especially for them, because that's what they do – they inspire me to go on and give performances like that and without the people coming out you can't become a big star, so I have to thank them for their support."
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