Josh Taylor will always take pride in becoming boxing’s second undisputed 140-pound champion of the four-belt era.

Ultimately, though, Taylor decided that paying so much money in sanctioning fees and making mandatory defenses in which he wasn’t interested wasn’t worthwhile. Scotland’s Taylor simultaneously defended the IBF, WBA, WBC and WBO belts once, but he has since given up three of those world championships.

Taylor will defend only his WBO junior welterweight title against Teofimo Lopez on June 10 in a 12-round main event ESPN will televise from The Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York.

He explained to Showtime’s Brian Custer during a recent episode of Custer’s “The Last Stand Podcast” why it didn’t make sense to him to keep all four belts.

“Well, it’s impossible,” Taylor said. “For one, you’ve gotta pay all these sanctioning fees as well. When I boxed [Jose] Ramirez, you know, 12 percent of my purse was [given] away to sanctioning fees. It’s ridiculous. You know, each sanctioning fee, each body, takes three percent of your purse. That’s 12 percent of your purse [taken] away, so I’m not gonna pay that kinda money. Why would I pay that kinda money if it’s not for a fight that I’m up for, you know, in terms of creating history and stuff? So, it started then becoming mandatories and stuff.

“So, the way for me to have that rematch with Jack, I had to let go of belts because the mandatories were coming in from all the different organizations. It’s almost impossible to keep all the belts and get the fights that you want, when you’ve got all the belts, because all the organizations start then calling in the mandatories. So, it’s impossible to then go the route you wanna go.”

The 32-year-old Taylor, who beat Ramirez by unanimous decision to become the fully unified champion in May 2021, planned to defend only his WBO belt against British southpaw Jack Catterall in a rematch that was postponed multiple times. Taylor’s split-decision victory over Catterall in February 2022 was considered controversial and Taylor wanted to beat Catterall more convincingly in their second fight.

A foot injury suffered by Taylor (19-0, 13 KOs) in mid-January caused an indefinite postponement of that rematch. The WBO later ordered him to make a mandatory defense of his title against Brooklyn’s Lopez (18-1, 13 KOs).

The three belts Taylor relinquished have since been won by Alberto Puello (WBA), Regis Prograis (WBC) and Subriel Matias (IBF).

The Dominican Republic’s Puello (21-0, 10 KOs) likely will be stripped of his WBA super lightweight title because he failed a performance-enhancing drug test last month, which caused him to withdraw from an optional defense against Rolando “Rolly” Romero on May 13 at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. North Las Vegas’ Romero (14-1, 12 KOs) will instead face Venezuela’s Ismael Barroso (24-3-2, 22 KOs) for the WBA’s interim championship in the main event of a “Showtime Championship Boxing” tripleheader that night.

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.