By Rick Reeno
Event organizers have informed BoxingScene.com that Saturday's fight between heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko (62-3, 52KOs) and challenger Kubrat Pulev (20-0, 11KOs) will only have the IBF championship at stake. Pulev is the IBF's mandatory challenger.
Besides the IBF crown, Klitschko also holds the IBO/WBO/WBA world titles. If Pulev pulls off the upset at the O2 Arena in Hamburg, he will only walk away with the IBF crown.
No reason was specified for the sole title being at stake, but it is believed that neither Pulev or his team had any interest in paying sanctioning fees to four separate organizations.
Pulev's position, which is obviously a cost-cutting measure, is not the first time (or the last) where a boxer refused to pay multiple sanctioning fees in a fight. In one of the more high profile cases, Carlos Baldomir refused to pay sanctioning fees to the IBF when he challenged then welterweight champion Zab Judah in 2006. Baldomir pulled off the upset and captured the Judah's WBC title, while Judah remained the beltholder of the IBF.
However, BoxingScene has confirmed that a Klitschko victory will count as a defense of all four titles, because the champion is paying the sanctioning fees to all four organizations.