Back in May, Artur Beterbiev signed a contract to face Germany's Enrico Koelling in an IBF final eliminator, with July 29 in Quebec City as the working date and location.
During that period of time, Beterbiev filed documents with the court to break his promotional agreement with Yvon Michel of GYM.
Michel told outlets in Canada that a date and venue for Beterbiev-Koelling was not fully finalized as they are looking to see what works best for the television networks in the United States.
Beterbiev (11-0, 11 KOs) confirmed that the fight with Koelling (23-1) has now fallen through due to his legal battle with GYM.
"It is with great regret that I learned today that GYM has decided to cancel my fight against Enrico Koelling, notwithstanding repeated assurances that the fight would take place. This news comes right in the middle of my training camp and it is very upsetting. This is made worse by the grossly misleading report coming from GYM that the fight was cancelled because I could not get a visa to fight in the United States," Beterbiev stated.
"The truth is that GYM refused to go ahead with the fight, notwithstanding the fact that all the necessary contracts have been signed, unless I dropped my lawsuit seeking a confirmation of the termination of our agreement. When I refused to do so, GYM made sure to pull the plug on the fight."
Michel is legally fighting Beterbiev's move to get out of his contract. Michel also promotes two other two light heavyweights - WBC world champion Adonis Stevenson and undefeated Eleider Alvarez. Beterbiev moved from Russia to Canada and has spent his entire career with GYM. All three fighters - Beterbiev, Alvarez and Stevenson - are advised by Al Haymon.
GYM fired right back at Beterbiev's claims regarding the background of the Koelling fight being put off.
"It is with regret today that GYM had to make that decision [of cancelling the fight], but we believe Team Beterbiev is trying to put the guilt on GYM and is posting inaccurate facts. At that time [that he signed the contract] it had been mentioned to Beterbiev's team, his trainer and Sauerland Event that it was a tentative date subject to changes depending on the economic viability of the event," GYM stated.
In his legal documents, Beterbiev claims that GYM failed to meet the contractual number of fights that were promised per year and also says the promoter has violated their agreement by not paying his purses within the ten days of his fights.