A purse bid hearing will be required to determine promotional rights to the ordered WBA junior lightweight title fight between Roger Gutierrez and Chris Colbert.
The 30-day negotiation period ended without a deal in place, as representatives for Gutierrez and Colbert were unable to come to terms by Wednesday’s deadline. The fight will now become the subject of a purse bid hearing scheduled for September 27 via Zoom conference call, WBA president Gilberto Jesus Mendoza informed BoxingScene.com.
The session will be open to all WBA-registered promoters, with the minimum acceptable bid set at $120,000. Gutierrez will be entitled to 55% of the winning bid, with the remaining 45% to go to Colbert as the mandatory challenger.
Gutierrez-Colbert was the first title fight formally ordered by the WBA following its (forced) commitment to reduce its number of recognized titles, coming two days after Gutierrez’s repeat win over Nicaragua’s Rene Alvarado on August 14 in Frisco, Texas. At the time of the August 16 order, the pairing served as a title consolidation fight as Gutierrez (26-3-1, 20KOs) was the recognized WBA “World” junior lightweight titlist and Colbert as the sanctioning body’s “interim” titleholder.
Colbert’s status was moved to mandatory challenger after the WBA scrapped all interim titles on August 25, inserting the majority of claimants as the number-one contender for their respective division. The stakes were raised for this particular matchup after Gutierrez was deemed as the sanctioning body’s titlist at the weight after Gervonta Davis agreed to relinquish his WBA “Super” title earlier this month.
It still wasn’t enough to get the two parties to come to terms. Venezuela’s Gutierrez is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions banner while Colbert fights under the Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) banner and was represented in talks by TGB Promotions, who handles the majority of PBC-branded events.
Gutierrez will attempt his second overall title defense and first since being upgraded in title status. He won the “World” title in a thrilling twelve-round decision over Alvarado in their January 2 rematch, scoring three knockdowns including one in the twelfth and final round to pull off the upset win. The feat avenged a stoppage loss from earlier in his career, while their rubber match this past August proved less entertaining than its predecessors.
Colbert (16-0, 6KOs) last fought in July, earning a twelve-round decision win over Mongolia’s Tugstsogt Nyambayar at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California.
Neither party can commit to another fight with this one having been ordered. Should Colbert opt to not proceed with the fight—regardless of forthcoming purse bid results—he will be dropped from the mandatory position and ineligible to challenge for the title through his next fight. Should Gutierrez so refuse, the title will be declared vacant.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox