Erickson Lubin must win a WBC elimination match if he hopes to get another shot at that sanctioning organization’s super welterweight title.
Lubin is the WBC’s number one contender at 154 pounds, but he is not yet its mandatory challenger for champion Jermell Charlo. Mauricio Sulaiman, president of the WBC, has informed BoxingScene.com that Lubin must win an eliminator to become its mandatory challenger again.
Lubin was Charlo’s mandatory challenger when Charlo recorded a one-punch, first-round knockout of Lubin in October 2017 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
The 24-year-old Lubin (22-1, 16 KOs), a southpaw from Orlando, Florida, has won each of his four fights since Charlo beat him to move back into the WBC’s top spot at 154 pounds.
“He’s not the mandatory contender,” Sulaiman said. “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.”
Houston’s Charlo (33-1, 17 KOs) has repeatedly expressed in recent weeks his willingness to fight Jeison Rosario next. The Dominican Republic’s Rosario (20-1-1, 14 KOs) upset Julian Williams (27-2-1, 16 KOs, 1 NC) by fifth-round technical knockout January 18 in Williams’ hometown of Philadelphia to win the IBF, IBO and WBA belts.
Charlo regained his championship from Harrison in their rematch December 21 in Ontario, California. Charlo dropped Detroit’s Harrison (28-3, 21 KOs) three times on his way to an 11th-round knockout in a fight FOX aired from Toyota Arena.
Harrison upset Charlo by unanimous decision to win the WBC title in December 2018 at Barclays Center.
Harrison is ranked third in the WBC’s 154-pound ratings, behind Lubin and Spain’s Sergio Garcia (31-0, 13 KOs). A Lubin-Harrison elimination match still could be ordered by the WBC, according to Sulaiman.
“Yes, that is possible,” Sulaiman said. “But Harrison just lost his father, so that is something we’ll be taking into consideration.”
Ali Salaam, Harrison’s father and trainer, died April 20 from COVID-19.
Lubin, meanwhile, wants another shot at Charlo, who sees no reason why he should box Lubin again.
“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.”
Lubin beat contender Nathaniel Gallimore (21-4-1, 17 KOs) by 10-round unanimous decision in his last fight, October 26 at Santander Arena in Reading, Pennsylvania. Gallimore is the only opponent who has beaten Rosario, whom Gallimore stopped in the sixth round in April 2017.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.