Kevin Cunningham Wants Danny Garcia For Erickson Lubin: “If We Can’t Get The Charlo-Castaño Winner, We Would Be Willing To Welcome Danny Garcia To The 154-Pound Division”
By: Hans Themistode
Kevin Cunningham, head trainer of 154-pound contender Erickson Lubin, has successfully helped his young fighter pick up the pieces of his shattered career. After suffering a shocking first round, one-punch knockout loss at the hands of Jermell Charlo in October of 2017, Lubin has gone on to win six straight.
His most recent ring appearance though, may have produced his most impressive performance yet. Just a few weeks ago, Lubin took on former unified champion, Jeison Rosario. Despite being shaken by a right hand in the fourth round, Lubin shrugged off those difficult moments and went on to stop his man in the sixth.
Considering that the Florida native was already made the mandatory challenger to Charlo’s WBC title, Cunningham believes that his fighter deserves credit for continuing to take tough assignment after tough assignment. As for what could be next, outside of a title shot, the long-time trainer doesn’t want to see any fight offers come across his desk unless there’s a big name associated with it.
“I think Hammer made a huge statement,” said Cunningham during an interview with Boxingscene.com. “He’s cut from the throwback fighter’s cloth. Most guys that are sitting in the #1 mandatory spot would look for a soft touch until they get the title shot. Hammer’s only interested in fighting the best in the division. So while he’s waiting for his shot, he’s willing to fight the other top names in the division.”
Speaking of top names in the division, Danny Garcia, a former unified champion at 140 pounds and a one-time belt holder at 147, is ready to move up in an attempt to be considered an elite 154-pounder.
“I really want to go to 154 pounds,” said Garcia during a recent interview with FightHype.com. “I really do.”
If the decision was solely up to Cunningham, he would much rather Lubin take on the winner of the undisputed showdown between Charlo and Brian Castaño on July 17th. Believing that his man has done everything necessary to warrant a title shot in his next bout, Cunningham desperately wants Lubin to get another crack at a world title.
But, as is the case at times in boxing, mandated title challengers are made to wait far longer than they would like. If the same fate awaits Lubin, Cunningham would have no problem preparing his man to take on a decorated fighter who is looking to make a mark in his new division.
“We only want a marquee fight next. If for some reason we can’t get the Charlo-Castaño winner, we would be willing to oblige Danny Garcia and welcome him to the 154-pound division.”
Erickson Lubin Violently Stops Jeison Rosario In The Sixth
By: Hans Themistode
Both men desperately wanted it. For both Erickson Lubin and Jeison Rosario, it was a chance to move past the shadow that has been cast over their careers by Jermell Charlo. With the current unified champion holding wins against both men, they attempted to move past their one-sided knockout losses and get on the championship track.
For Erickson Lubin, he did just that.
As the crowd began filling the State Farm Arena, in Atlanta Georgia, they could barely stay in their seats. Both men walked to the center of the ring and attempted to take control. In the opening two rounds, it was clear that Lubin had the clear edge in terms of overall boxing. The Florida native seemingly breezed through the first two rounds before dominating the third round. On several occasions, the highly-rated contender landed several flush shots which had Rosario on shaky legs.
As Rosario walked back to his seat at the end of the round, the former unified titlist at 154 pounds was visibly shaken. He stumbled mightily and breathed in deeply as he took a seat. As the crowd at State Farm Arena rose to their feet in the following round in anticipation of a knockout win for Lubin, Rosario had something to say about. The Dominican Republic native stormed back in the fourth round and took clear control.
Much like Lubin’s shot at the end of the third which had his man visibly rattled, he was now on the receiving end of a similar blow. Rosario landed a clean right hand which had Lubin shaken.
Trainer Kevin Cunningham tore into Lubin once he returned to the corner and implored him to follow the game plan. As the start of the fifth began, he did just that, Lubin went back to his jab which was effective for him in the early going.
In the sixth, after attacking Rosario’s midsection several times over, Lubin finally found the shot he was looking for as Rosario crumbled to the floor. While he managed to return to his feet, Lubin went right back to the well and attacked the body again. No longer able to withstand the punishment, Rosario fell to his knees once again, this time for good.
With the win, Lubin will officially move into the mandated title position for the WBC.
Erickson Lubin: “This Been The Best Camp Of My Whole Career, There’s No Doubt In My Mind That I’m Ready For A Title Now”
By: Hans Themistode
The fun part is truly about to begin for Erickson Lubin. After a grueling training camp that lasted over 12 weeks, the highly rated 154-pound contender is only a few hours away from stepping back inside the ring.
Standing across from him will be former unified champion, Jeison Rosario, in the co-main event at State Farm Arena in Atlanta Georgia. Although he’s always been willing to put in the work, Lubin believes that he took things up a level for his preparation. And while he could have spent the next few minutes breaking down the exact details of why he’ll be in the best shape of his life, the Florida native would much rather let his performance do the talking for him.
“This been the best camp of my whole career and I think this is going to be my best performance,” said Lubin during an interview with Ray Flores. “I’m locked in, I’m ready to rock and show the world.”
For Lubin, the road to a world title has been both relatively easy and excruciatingly difficult. After blasting through the competition at a young age, a flamboyant Lubin screamed from the mountain tops for a shot at a world title. Answering the call, was Jermell Charlo.
The two clashed in the main event slot at the Barclays Center, in Brooklyn, New York on October 14th, 2017. While fans were just getting comfortable in their seats to watch what many believed was a 50/50 sort of matchup, Charlo sent everyone home early as he landed one punch in the final few seconds of the opening round which ended the night.
Since then, Lubin has been forced to grind his way back up from the bottom. He’s reeled off five straight wins against several notable names and most recently, took care of business against Terrell Gausha in September of 2020, winning a close unanimous decision.
Looking back, Lubin smiles as he admits that he may have been a bit too quick in his bravado for a world title at a young age. That said, with the plethora of experience he has now, he believes he’s ready for the next step.
“I went for the title a couple days after turning 22. I made a mistake and went in there a little bit too early and got caught with a good shot. Now, I feel like I’m more seasoned and way more ready. I like the steps that we’re taking now. We’re fighting these significant opponents. The top guys in this weight class. These are definitely the fights that I needed under my belt to mature in that ring and get the experience that I needed. There’s no doubt in my mind that I’m ready for a title now.”
Before Lubin receives another crack at a world title, however, he’ll have to deal with an aggressive, heavy-hitting, former unified titlist who’s anxious to relive his championship moments. The Dominican Republic native was stripped of titles in violent fashion at the hands of Jermell Charlo in September of 2020.
In the mind of Rosario, his loss to Charlo was nothing more than a “fluke” and is motivated to get back on track with a knockout against Lubin. His brazen threats are something that Lubin isn’t taking lightly. All training camp long, the highly-rated contender has used Rosario’s words as a form of motivation. Now, with their showdown just a few hours away, Lubin is foaming at the mouth as he patiently watches the seconds tick off the clock.
“I’m expecting the best Rosario to be out there. That’s what keeps me motivated and keeps that fire in me. I’m looking forward to this.”
Erickson Lubin: “I Want The Best (Jeison) Rosario So I Can Show The World That I’m The Best At 154 Pounds”
By: Hans Themistode
Quietly, Erickson Lubin has put together quite the run. After suffering a first-round stoppage defeat at the hands of Jermell Charlo in October of 2017, Lubin has gone on to win five straight. In his most recent contest, the Florida native picked up a close unanimous decision win against fringe contender Terrell Gausha.
With each victory, Lubin continues to build his already stellar resume. In an effort to reinforce it yet again, the highly rated 154-pound contender will take on former unified champion Jeison Rosario. The two are slated to be the co-main event to Gervonta Davis vs. Mario Barrios at the State Farm Arena on June 26th.
As his fight date creeps closer and closer, Lubin simply can’t wait to add another quality scalp to his already impressive collection.
“I’m excited to be facing another ex-world champion,” said Lubin during an interview with FightHype.com. “It’s a good look on my resume. June 26th, expect fireworks.”
Rosario, 26, is looking to jump back onto the title scene after losing in blowout fashion to Jermell Charlo in September of last year and losing his 154-pound titles in the process. Rosario would hit the deck on three separate occasions before ultimately getting stopped in the eighth round. Before his untimely demise, Rosario made a name for himself as he stomped into the backyard of former unified champion Julian Williams and stopped him in front of his hometown crowd in five rounds.
Ultimately, Lubin is hoping that the same Rosario that showed up against Williams, is the one who’s standing across from him come fight night.
“I want the best Rosario. I want the Rosario that upset Jrock (Julian Williams) so I can show the world that I’m the best at 154 pounds.”
In terms of respect, Lubin has the utmost for Rosario and what he brings to the table. With that said, he views a win over the former world champion as a formality. If Lubin does in fact pick up the win, he’ll turn his full attention to July 17th. On the date in question, Charlo takes WBO belt holder, Brian Castano. The winner of their showdown will become the first undisputed champion at 154 pounds since Winky Wright in 2004.
While he doesn’t want to look too far ahead, Lubin has an eye on how things will shake out.
“I feel like after this victory right here, we’ll be for sure in line for that title. I know he got a test in front of him in Castano but I want the winner. After I take care of business here, we’ll definitely be in the talks for that.”
Gervonta Davis vs Mario Barrios and Erickson Lubin vs Jeison Rosario Headline Showtime Pay-per-view Event June 26th
By: Hans Themistode
Gervonta Davis will no longer drain his body in order to make weight.
The former two-division world champion has long been rumored to take on current WBA “Regular” super lightweight world champion Mario Barrios. Now, with Showtime Boxing officially releasing their spring/summer schedule, those rumors have been confirmed.
Outside of his most recent contest against Leo Santa Cruz, Davis (24-0, 23 KOs) has a long history of struggling to make weight. In August of 2017, the Baltimore native failed to make weight for his showdown against Francisco Fonseca and was subsequently stripped of his title at the weigh-in. Davis would still go on to stop Fonseca in the third round of their contest.
In December of 2019, Davis opted to move up to the 135 pound division to take on long faded title contender Yuriorkis Gamboa with the vacant WBA “Regular” title on the line. Despite making the move five pounds north, Davis failed to make weight on the first try. He would then strip down to make the 135-pound weight limit. Regardless of his issues on the scale, Davis went on to stop Gamboa before taking on his toughest test to date in Leo Santa Cruz, starching him in the sixth round of their contest that took place at a contracted weight of 130 pounds.
Although Davis has shown an ability to walk right through his opponents, he’ll face several disadvantages when he takes on Barrios (26-0, 17 KOs). The San Antonio Texas, native will walk into their contest with a four-inch reach and five-inch height advantage.
With both men slated to square off on a Showtime pay-per-view event on June 26th, they’ll receive a major boost in the form of an action packed co-main event.
Former unified 154-pound champion Jeison Rosario will take on streaking contender Erickson Lubin. Both are looking to jump back into the championship mix with a win come fight night.
For Rosario (20-2-1, 14 KOs), he burst onto the scene following a stunning fifth-round upset win against Julian Williams in January of 2020. The win for Rosario may have netted him both the WBA and IBF world titles but his reign at the top of the mountain was truncated in his next ring appearance against Jermell Charlo. The aforementioned Charlo would go on to drop Rosario in the first and sixth-round before ultimately stopping him in brutal fashion in the eighth.
In the case of Lubin (23-1, 16 KOs), he’ll look to place even more distance between himself and his own knockout defeat at the hands of Charlo. The two battled it out in a highly anticipated contest in October of 2017. While it was thought to be a closely fought contest going in, Charlo ended things early with a one-punch knockout. Since then, Lubin has reeled off five straight wins.
Currently, the Florida product occupies the number one ranking in the WBC sanctioning body and looks to further solidify his title shot come June 26th.
Jeison Rosario and Erickson Lubin Set To Square Off
By: Hans Themistode
Jeison Rosario will have an opportunity to jump right back into the title hunt in his next contest. As first reported by boxingscene.com, the former unified Jr middleweight titlist has agreed to terms with contender Erickson Lubin.
Currently, no date or venue has been revealed as of yet but the pair are officially heading towards a showdown in the coming months. For Lubin, a matchup with Rosario is exactly what he’s called for as he continues to rehabilitate his image following a knockout loss at the hands of Jermell Charlo in October of 2017.
Since the stunning one punch defeat, Lubin (23-1, 16 KOs) has dusted himself off and handled his business in the ring, winning five straight. The 2016 ESPN prospect of the year added former Olympian Terrell Gausha to his win column as the two battled it out in September of 2020. Lubin easily outboxed his man during the first half of the fight before struggling down the stretch to eke out the close decision win.
As for Rosario, his time at the top of the division proved to be transient. After upsetting the odds by punishing former unified Jr middleweight champion Julian Williams via fifth-round knockout, Rosario’s title reign was immediately truncated in his next contest against Jermell Charlo.
No matter how hard he tried, Rosario (20-2-1, 14 KOs) simply found himself outgunned on the night. The Dominican Republic native peeled himself up off the canvas in the first and six rounds. While he proved to be resilient, Rosario was ultimately sent to the canvas for the third and final time in the eighth round.
Presently, thanks to his five consecutive wins, Lubin occupies the number one spot in the WBC rankings. He’ll look to solidify his status in the division with a win over the former belt holder.
Erickson Lubin: “I Definitely Feel Like I Took The Sport For Granted”
By: Hans Themistode
Erickson Lubin has placed a lot of time between himself and the worst night of his boxing career.
After winning ESPN’s prospect of the year in 2016, Lubin found himself standing across the ring from Jermell Charlo. Everything seemed perfect for the Florida native. With one more win against the aforementioned Charlo, and Lubin would have completed a lifelong dream of becoming a world champion.
However, what was supposed to be his dream moment turned into a nightmare as he was laid out within minutes of the very first round.
Before the loss to Houston’s Charlo, Lubin (23-1, 16 KOs) went from a quiet, hardworking, low-key boxing talent, to someone who became full of himself. The Jr middleweight contender looked to his left and heard fans screaming his name, then looked to his right and listened to the pundits as they crowned him as one of boxing’s brightest stars.
Nevertheless, the consistent praise went straight to his head and Charlo took full advantage.
“I definitely feel like I took the sport for granted because of the hype and everything,” admitted Lubin to former world champion Cornelius Bundrage. “I needed that transition from taking a loss and having to face adversity. That Charlo loss definitely taught me how to be patient. I was lacking in patience like I wanted to be a world champion so fast. I saw the light and I was like I was young and I wanted to be the youngest to do this and the youngest to do that. It kinda humbled me, I won’t take boxing for granted ever, ever again.”
The price for Lubin’s lack of focus as he alluded to, was a painful one. Gone were the mentions of him becoming a household name as his stock to a major hit. While Lubin could have returned to the ring much earlier than he actually did, the now 25-year-old took the time to evaluate his skills and the team surrounding him.
After being completely honest with himself, Lubin realized he needed to make changes. Not only would he make some adjustments to the manner in which he fought but he also enlisted the help of renowned trainer Kevin Cunningham. By all accounts, the combination of the two has been a sagacious decision.
“I had just turned 22 days before the fight. But I believed in myself since I was 18 and I believed that I could’ve became world champion anytime they gave me the opportunity. I feel like I just needed to be a better pro and just learn more of the pro-style. You can see it in my game now. I’m a whole better fighter. Moving away from home and getting with Kevin has been a big help. I just knew that he could take my game to the next level.”
Although the loss may have been excruciating, Lubin has pushed forward and is now in the midst of a five-fight win streak. Now, he finds himself in a familiar position as he is once again the mandatory challenger to Charlo.
Looking back on their first fight, it’s difficult to peel away anything good from the results. To many, the abrupt ending of their first showdown appears fluky. Anyone can get caught with a big shot, especially early. But for Lubin, he refrains from calling Charlo’s one-punch knockout win against him lucky. He simply gives Charlo the credit he deserves but vows that the second time around he’ll be more than ready.
“I don’t look at it as a lucky punch. Other people might say it was a lucky punch to keep me happy but I know boxing. It was a nice placed shot. He set me up with a nice shot. When it’s time, I’ll definitely be ready for my mandatory which is Charlo.”
Under The Radar Fights Fans Should Be Hoping For This Year
By: Hans Themistode
The big fights are easy to identify. Even the most casual fans will tune into matchups headlined by Terence Crawford vs Errol Spence Jr. or Tyson Fury vs Anthony Joshua. While those fights are undoubtedly huge, discussing them has become incredibly repetitive.
The sport of boxing doesn’t revolve around those obvious big fights, and more times than not, those marquee matchups either take years to materialize or fail to happen at all. The anticipation would go through the roof if Canelo Alvarez agreed to take on Jermall Charlo or if Manny Pacquiao and Terence Crawford came to a bout agreement. But there are a ton of other possible matches that are floating under the radar. One’s that would make fight fans and even casuals run to their television screens. Let’s take a look a look at some of them now.
Luis Ortiz vs Andy Ruiz Jr
When it comes to the heavyweight division, much of the attention is on unified champion Anthony Joshua as well as WBC/Ring magazine belt holder Tyson Fury. There is little doubt that their showdown would entertain. However, a contest between former champion Andy Ruiz Jr. (33-2, 22 KOs) and multiple time title challenger Luis Ortiz would possibly produce even more fireworks.
Both big men know how to box but more importantly, they know how to bang and enjoy doing it. Outside of his defeats to Deontay Wilder, Ortiz (32-2, 27 KOs) has never come close to losing a fight. The now 41-year-old is fresh off a first-round knockout win against Alexander Flores in early November. Ruiz Jr., on the other hand, is still searching to get back on track following his one-sided loss against Anthony Joshua in late 2019. Both men hit hard, have sturdy chins and need a big fight.
This one has fight of the year candidate written all over it.
Jermall Charlo vs Chris Eubank Jr
WBC middleweight belt holder Jermall Charlo (31-0, 22 KOs) has been described in a variety of ways. Brash, brazen, loquacious and even arrogant. In many respects, so has WBA interim titlist Chris Eubank Jr.
Charlo, 30, has done his best to quiet his doubters with his most recent performance, an easier than expected win against perennial contender Sergiy Derevyanchenko. Eubank Jr. though, is in a similar position. Sure his world title win was a bit fortuitous considering his opponent in Mat Korobov dislocated his shoulder in the second round of their matchup, Eubank Jr. (29-2, 22 KOs) proved in his prior fight that he can not only compete with the elite but beat them convincingly. That much was proven after sending former champion James DeGale into retirement.
In terms of Charlo and Eubank Jr., both men have expressed plenty of interest in facing each other. With nothing set in stone for either man at the moment, both should look to make this showdown happen next.
Erickson Lubin vs Jarrett Hurd
Has there ever been a boring fight involving Jarrett Hurd? Of course not. The former unified Jr middleweight champion was once viewed as the class of the division. Those thoughts however, have mostly dissipated following his surprising defeat to Julian Williams in mid-2019.
Still, with only one loss plastered to his record, the Maryland native is far from done. A possible matchup with Erickson Lubin would prove just that, provided he wins.
Lubin, much like Hurd (24-1, 16 KOs), saw his stock take a considerable hit the moment his head bounced off the canvas courtesy of a Jermell Charlo left hand in 2017. He’s rebuilt himself nicely since then reeling off five straight wins. If he wanted, Lubin could sit back and await his second crack at a world title but the 25-year-old loves a good fight. Ironically enough, Hurd loves himself a good scrap as well. It’s a matchup made in boxing Heaven.
Terence Crawford vs Keith Thurman
No not Manny Pacquiao and no not Errol Spence Jr. Terence Crawford (37-0, 28 KOs) should pick a fight with former unified welterweight champion Keith Thurman. By all accounts, Spence Jr. is the top name in the division and the one Crawford should continue to lure into the ring. With that being said, Thurman (29-1, 22 KOs) was Spence Jr. long before he broke into the championship mix.
The biggest wins on the Dallas native’s resume came at the expense of Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter. While they were impressive victories, Thurman took care of business against both men in 2016 and 2017 respectively.
Injuries, of course, have held back the 32-year-old Thurman. And despite his loss to Pacquiao in his last ring appearance, he proved that there’s still plenty left in the tank.
Fans have grown tired of begging and groveling for a matchup between Crawford and Spence Jr. Instead, they should switch their focus and hope that Crawford faces Thurman. The former champion may have lost countless fans due to his inactivity in the ring but he’s still one of the best fighters in the world.
Erickson Lubin Eyeing Matchups With Jarrett Hurd And Julian Williams If No Charlo Rematch Says Head Trainer
By: Hans Themistode
The risk often outweighs the reward. That’s frequently the case when a fighter finds himself in a mandatory position.
Too many times have we seen fighters scratch and claw their way to the number one ranking in a specific sanctioning body, only to lose everything in the blink of an eye due to one bad night at the office.
The options are usually reduced to two at that point. Either said fighter sits back and waits a protracted amount of time for his shot, or he takes on an heralded opponent with little to no chance of an upset happening.
Jr middleweight contender Erickson Lubin isn’t a fan of either option. And while he’s already ranked number one in the WBC for Jermell Charlo’s title, that doesn’t mean he isn’t willing to risk it all.
“We are hoping for the mandatory shot at Charlo next,” said Lubin’s head trainer Kevin Cunningham to BoxingScene.com. “If Charlo isn’t next, I’m sure the fans wouldn’t mind seeing Erickson Lubin versus Jarret Hurd or Erickson Lubin versus Julian Williams. Most fighters that get in mandatory position sit until they get the title shot. Hammer wants to stay busy. He is willing to face the other top guys until he gets a shot.”
Lubin, 25, has a second chance at a first impression. After winning ESPN’s prospect of the year in 2016, the Florida native was fast tracked to a world title shot against the aforementioned Charlo one year later.
The hype train surrounding him was quickly derailed as a Charlo right hand left him down and out in the first round. He’s since bounced back in a huge way, winning five straight and finding himself in the mandatory position once again.
If Lubin gets his wish, he’ll be facing Charlo in his next fight with revenge on his mind. But he’ll find his man a bit heavier this time around thanks to several additional world titles due to his eighth round stoppage win over Jeison Rosario.
As much as Cunningham would love for his man to begin his own title reign, he knows that Charlo has a bevy of options in front of him.
“Hammer’s sitting in a good position and we’re waiting to see how things play out. Big props to Jermell Charlo for his KO win over Rosario. I agree with Max Kellerman, Charlo is the undisputed junior middleweight champion. Hammer’s Charlo’s WBC mandatory but Charlo has mandatories with the WBA and IBF also. There’s also talk of a Charlo-Teixeira unification for the WBO.”
Erickson Lubin: “Jermell To Me Is A True Champion But I Don’t Feel Like He’s Better Than Me”
By: Hans Themistode
The world titles in the Jr. middleweight division have found themselves on a never ending merry-go-round.
The first stop for the IBF and WBA titles was at the feet of Jarrett Hurd. The Maryland native would see his title reign last roughly a year and a half until his championship belts decided it was time to make another trip, this time to Philadelphia.
Julian Williams found himself next up on the merry-go-round, winning the titles from Hurd in May of last year. Yet by the time the Philadelphia native reached out to put the world titles on his mantle, Jeison Rosario snatched them away from him, stopping the now former champion in the fifth round of his first title defense.
The most recent stop on the merry-go-round was in Detroit where Tony Harrison gladly took his turn. Much like Williams though, Harrison saw his title reign truncated the moment he attempted to defend his controversially won belt against Jermell Charlo.
Even with the numerous short title runs, the record books will always say that fighters such as Harrison and Williams were once world champions, but for contender Erickson Lubin, their title runs shouldn’t even count.
“A lot of what’s been going on is these champions will win the belt one time and then they fight again and lose it. To me their not considered a true champion,” said Lubin on the Premier Boxing Champions podcast. “Like yeah they won the belt and that’s cool and all but when I win the belt I’m looking to keep the belt until I retired. A true champion in my book is someone who gets the belts and defends them. They defend the belts, keep winning the belts and go up in weight classes and win more belts.”
Lubin (22-1, 14 KOs) has his own chance to place himself in front of the championship line. This weekend, the former amateur standout will take on former Olympian Terrell Gausha in a WBC eliminator contest. Should he win, Lubin will find himself fighting for another world title.
Three years ago, Lubin was on the brink of etching his name as a world champion. Yet, he ran smack into the right hand of Charlo on the night which ended his dreams in the first round. Fast forward to today however, and the highly rated contender believes that he’s better than ever.
“I been grinding ever since I took my loss and I been improving ever since I took my loss. I was dangerous before I loss but now that I took that loss I got with Kevin Cunningham and we improving in everything.”
The trash talk leading up to Charlo and Lubin’s matchup was entertaining to say the least. At every turn both fighters would jaw off at one another to no end.
In short, there was no love lost. The two may not see eye to eye, but Lubin respects his skillset. With that being said, even with a knockout loss, he still doesn’t believe he plays second fiddle to anyone. Including Charlo.
“Jermell to me is a true champion. He was able to get that belt and defend it. Even though he loss to Tony Harrison he went back and made a statement. He proved that the first fight was controversial, so to me he’s a true champion. But I don’t feel like he’s better than me. He did beat me so he’s considered better then me to the fans and everyone else but I can’t wait. When the time comes we’ll definitely be ready.”
Not only does Lubin need to get past Gausha this weekend, but Charlo has some work to do as well. The current WBC belt holder will meet with unified champion Jeison Rosario in a FOX Pay-Per-View headliner on September 26th.
Lubin doesn’t expect it to be easy, but for the first time in his career, he’s on team Charlo.
“It’s a toss up but I’m thinking that Charlo is going to beat him,” explained Lubin. “Charlo is more of the seasoned veteran and he’s more athletic in my opinion. If he sits in there and trades shots with Rosario then that’s a bad idea in my opinion. But he moves his feet way more and he has some punching power. With Rosario I feel like he’s never been on this stage before.”
Ranking Premier Boxing Champions Top 5 Fights to Watch From Their Recent Schedule Release on SHOWTIME
By: Hans Themistode
Grotesque mismatches were becoming the norm in this new COVID-19 boxing landscape. Financial issues and the lack of a live audience gave promoters the right to place uninteresting matchups on television screens across the world.
While it was appreciated, fans were grinding their teeth as they saw predictable fight after predictable fight. Compelling and interesting matchups would have to wait until the back end of 2020 or worse, sometime in 2021.
For Al Haymon and Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) however, they would hear none of it.
Earlier this week PBC announced their SHOWTIME schedule for the remainder of 2020, and it did not disappoint. Numerous championship matchups have now flooded boxing fans’ once desolate schedule. With so many interesting contests, we’ve decided to rank the best five from the group.
Every contest on the docket is worth watching, but here’s our choice for the best of the best of PBC’s SHOWTIME Boxing schedule.
5. Erickson Lubin vs Terrell Gausha
Erickson Lubin (22-1, 16 KOs) has been waiting to prove that he isn’t a hype job. The former ESPN prospect of the year looked to be the real deal during the early portion of his career. However, a right hand from Jermell Charlo in Lubin’s first crack at a world title in 2017, put an end to that notion. Since then, Lubin has been hard at work reshaping his image. The Florida native has picked up four straight wins with three coming via stoppage, and now finds himself in a WBC title eliminator against Terrell Gausha.
Much like Lubin, the former Olympian has done some reshaping of his own, although not as successful. After losing a one sided contest in his own bid to win a world title contest against Erislandy Lara in 2017, Gausha (21-1-1, 10 KOs) has been both inactive, fighting only once a year, and lackluster, scoring a draw against Austin Trout in his last ring appearance.
Not only are these two fairly evenly matched, but with the next title shot up for grabs, there is plenty on the line.
4. Nonito Donaire vs Nordine Oubaali
The retirement train was thought to have long left the station with Nonito Donaire onboard. Yet, it appears that the 37 year old isn’t ready to pack up and leave just yet. After suffering losses to Jessie Magdaleno and Carl Frampton, Donaire (40-6, 26 KOs) received a bit of luck in reaching the finals of the World Boxing Super Series in 2019.
Meeting him there, was pound for pound star Naoya Inoue. The easy win that was predicted for Inoue was anything but that as Donaire gave him the toughest fight of his life. He may have come out on the losing end, but his performance has earned him a crack at WBC belt holder Nordine Oubaali (17-0, 12 KOs).
For most of his six year career, Oubaali has made it look easy. But while Donaire will walk into this one as an underdog, he has already proven that he has plenty left in the tank.
3. Jermell Charlo vs Jeison Rosario
Of all the matchups on this list, WBC titlist Jermell Charlo and his unification matchup against WBA and IBF champion Jeison Rosario, was the most surprising.
Rosario came out of absolutely nowhere last year when he ripped away the titles from Julian Williams. Instead of sitting back on his laurels and milking his belts for easy paydays, Rosario has decided to attempt to add even more to his hardware collection.
Charlo (33-1, 17 KOs) has gotten over his Tony Harrison saga and now finds himself fighting to become a unified champion. The betting public is already backing Charlo heavily, but they did the same when Rosario took on Williams, so he has no problem with the little amount of faith shown in him.
2. Gervonta Davis vs Leo Santa Cruz
For as explosive and dangerous as Gervonta Davis (23-0, 22 KOs) has looked during his career, fans were beginning to roll their eyes whenever a new unknown fighter stood across the ring from him. A highlight reel knockout is always waiting to happen, but resistance seldom followed.
On October 24th, however, Leo Santa Cruz (37-1-1, 19 KOs) will be looking to give Davis all he can handle when they face off. The four division world champion has grown tired of constant murmurs that he has eschewed the competition.
The storyline behind this one is simple. Davis has the punching power and speed on his side, while Santa Cruz is banking on his punch output and relentless pressure.
The winner of this one will have answered a ton of questions, while the loser on the other hand, will see their stock plummet.
1. Jermall Charlo vs Sergiy Derevyanchenko
Jermall Charlo (30-0, 22 KOs) has gained a reputation. He’s a big puncher, aggressive personality and an unknown commodity. Even with wins over Julian Williams and Austin Trout, Charlo continues to hear the doubters. He’s asked for big name fights against the likes of Canelo Alvarez and Gennadiy Golovkin, but you can hear a pin drop from either of those fighters in regards to interest.
Sergiy Derevyanchenko (13-2, 10 KOs) may not be the opponent that he wanted, but he is without question his toughest test yet. With two razor close decision losses to Daniel Jacobs and the aforementioned Golovkin, many believe that the Ukrainian born contender should already hold a world title. Nevertheless, he’ll pick up his third chance against Charlo on September 26th.
The intrigue surrounding this one is huge. In a contest that can be essentially decided with the flip of a coin, it ranks number one on our list of the best fights to watch on the SHOWTIME Boxing schedule.
WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman Eyes Erickson Lubin vs Tony Harrison Title Eliminator
By: Hans Themistode
Jr Middleweight contender Erickson Lubin has been spending half of his quarantine time preparing himself the best way he can for whenever boxing restrictions have lifted. The other half has been spent calling out WBC titlist Jermell Charlo.
Lubin made a ton of noise from the moment he stepped onto the scene in 2013. He managed to parlay that noise and skill, into a matchup with Charlo but quickly found himself on the wrong end of a right hand that ended the night quickly. Still, even with the sour taste in his mouth, that hasn’t stopped his enthusiasm for a part two.
“He see what’s going on,” Lubin said during an Instagram live interview. “I know he sees what’s going on. He see that I’m with [trainer] Kevin Cunningham. He see what I’m doing to these fighters that, you know, most of the division is having trouble with. And, you know, he’s just trying to buy time. I feel like he’s trying to buy time. Or he’s trying to find a different route, or end up moving up or something. You know, I’m not ducking no smoke. Jermell Charlo’s a great fighter. I’m not taking anything away from him.”
At the moment, Lubin finds himself in the number one spot for the WBC and a second date with Charlo. But just because he is in the number one spot, it doesn’t quite mean that he will be challenging for a title in his next contest.
“He’s not the mandatory contender,” said WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman. “The WBC was going to order Lubin to have to fight [Tony] Harrison as a final elimination bout prior to everything that has happened. Charlo has no mandatory [due] because no one has won a final elimination bout. At this moment, Charlo is free to take any voluntary defense.”
Other than a matchup with Charlo, a possible contest with Harrison has to be music to the ears of Lubin. It wasn’t that long where he not only called out Harrison, but also gave him a deadline to respond.
“I want Tony Harrison,” said Lubin. “We gotta talk. Tony Harrison, you got 24 hours. Let’s talk.”
Lubin paced back and forth as his deadline came and went. It isn’t the first time that Lubin was forced to wait for his shot at the big leagues.
On the surface, three years may not seem like a long time. But for Lubin, it’s felt like a lifetime.
Since he picked himself up off the canvas three years ago, he has repeatedly placed his opponents there. Winning four straight contests with three coming via stoppage.
Going up against Charlo at the age of 21 may have seemed like a good idea. But now, at the age of 24, he realizes that it wasn’t the best decision he’s ever made.
“You know, I went in there pretty young,” Lubin said. “I do admit that, you know, it was probably a bit early. But, you know, just the way my skill set is and my mindset, I feel like I was ready for that fight. And I feel like, you know, I wanted to get in there so quick and become a star so soon. But, you know, God had different plans for me. You know, we bounced back. We still bounced back and right now I’m sitting at number one in the WBC, so a rematch is in the near future.”
Jermell Charlo Heaps Praise on Erickson Lubin: “He Will Win a World Title”
By: Hans Themistode
WBC Jr Middleweight champion Jermell Charlo left Erickson Lubin in a state of unconsciousness when the two met in late 2017. Lubin, 24, was the upstart. He went 143-7 during his amateur career and came flying out of the gate to the tune of an 18-0 record as a pro.
His night against Charlo didn’t go as planned but since then, he’s picked up four straight victories. Including three via stoppage. As for Charlo, he suffered a bit of a hiccup of his own when he suffered a decision loss, albeit highly controversial, to Tony Harrison. From there, Charlo bounced back, stopping Harrison in the 11th of their rematch.
With his WBC belt wrapped around his waist again, Charlo is looking ahead to bigger and better opponents. But that doesn’t mean he isn’t checking his rear view mirror. When he does take the second to glance at Lubin, he’s left very impressed.
“Lubin will win a world title,” Charlo told co-hosts Kenneth Bouhairie and Michael Rosenthal. “Lubin will knock out a lot of motherf–kers if he put his mind to it. Just leave me the f–k alone. I’m different. But I see him.”
The Charlo vs Lubin feud could be far from over as Lubin has fought his way back to the number one ranking within the WBC. And while Lubin foams at the mouth at the mere thought of a Charlo rematch. The Jr Middleweight champion seems to have bigger fish to fry.
“I haven’t thought about no rematch with Lubin because I have moved on,” Charlo said. “It’s a lot of fighters in the way. Why would I even think in my mind to go backwards? I don’t wanna fight Harrison again, I don’t wanna fight Lubin again, I don’t wanna fight none of them motherf–kers I went through. I wanna see if I can prove that I’m really the top dog, I wanna know myself.”
Erickson Lubin is Ready to Turn The Page: “I am The Best at 154 pounds”
By: Hans Themistode
Jr Middleweight contender Erickson Lubin is finally ready to put the past behind him, but he’s also ready to face it as well.
Lubin (22-1, 16 KOs) found himself on the fast track to stardom back in 2013. He was fresh off a spectacular amateur career where he went 143-7. From there, he needed just three years to add the ESPN Prospect of the year award in 2016.
In short, everything was going according to plan. Until everything went sideways as Jermell Charlo left him unconscious in the first round. When Lubin woke up, he noticed everything was gone. His undefeated record, his dream, at least temporarily, of becoming a world champion and the hype surrounding him. But while everything was falling down around him inside of the ring, it helped him get things in order outside of it.
“It didn’t just play a role inside boxing,” said Lubin to Premier Boxing Champions on Instagram Live. “It played a role outside too. It was like a character defining loss. When I lost, I was trying to see who was still with me and who was my friends so I was still trying to figure out things.”
Lubin, 24, walked into the ring at 22 years of age and lacked any real experience at the world class level. Charlo on the other hand, marched to the ring five years older and had the edge in terms of competition faced. At the time, many wondered out loud if Lubin was biting off more than he could chew. He scoffed at that notion and vowed to prove everyone wrong. Now, three years later, Lubin believes the confidence that has led him to receiving non stop praise, worked against him.
“I went in there pretty young. I admit that it was probably a bit early, but the way my skill set is and my mind is, I felt like I was ready for that fight. In actuality I wanted to be a star so soon but God had different plans for me. We still bounced back and now I’m number one in the WBC so a rematch is in the near future.”
Bouncing back is putting it mildly. Lubin took the indelible mark that Charlo left on him and turned it into a deleterious rage. Beating his last four opponents and with the exception of his most recent contest, his previous three didn’t see the final bell.
Now, Lubin finds himself in a familiar position. Number one in the WBC and mandatory challenger to Charlo again. A rematch shouldn’t be an issue for the champion. He already has a mental edge because of how easy he made it look against Lubin the first time. But that was 2017. In 2020, it’s a whole different story.
“He sees what’s going on. He sees that I’m with Kevin Cunningham and what I’m doing to these fighters that most of these fighters are having trouble with. I feel like he’s just trying to buy time. Or he’s trying to find a different route or end up moving up. I’m not ducking any smoke. Jermell Charlo is a great fighter, I’m not taking anything away from him, but I feel like I am the best at 154 pounds. My main goal is to be world champion and not just world champion but to be unified and undisputed.”