WBA rules Yordenis Ugas must defend against Eimantas Stanionis next, has 30 days to negotiate
By Jeff Aronow: Yordenis Ugas must defend his WBA ‘Super World’ welterweight title against #1 Eimantas Stanionis next after the World Boxing Association ordered the fight on Wednesday during their meeting.
Ugas and Stanionis have 30 days to negotiate a fight between them before a purse bid is ordered.
This is part of the WBA’s four-fighter tournament to consolidate the titles with their organization at 147.
Ugas (27-4, 12 KOs) had tried arguing that shouldn’t take part in the WBA’s 4-fighter tourney, as he had plans of facing IBF/WBC champion Errol Spence Jr. in a unification fight.
Nevertheless, with Spence (27-0, 21 KOs) out of action with an eye injury, there’s no chance of Ugas fighting him anytime soon. In other words, there’s nothing preventing Ugas from defining against the unbeaten #1 WBA Stanionis (13-0, 9 KOs).
If Ugas gets through the fight with Stanionis, he’ll face the winner of the fight between WBA ‘regular’ 147-lb champion Jamal James and #4 Radzhab Butaev in March 2022 to decide who will be the sanctioning bodies’ welterweight champion.
Jamal James is already scheduled to defend his title in his ordered fight against Radzhab Butaev on October 30th on Showtime in a Premier Boxing Champions event from the Michelob ULTRA Arena at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.
#UgásStanionis After listening to the parties involved: We ratify that Yordenis Ugás and Eimantas Stanionis have 30 days to negotiate. We watch over the public perception of our sport.
— Gilberto J Mendoza (@GilberticoWBA) October 20, 2021
As the WBA ‘Super World’ welterweight champion, Ugas obviously wants to make sure he gets the biggest fights possible. He’s coming off of a huge 12 round unanimous decision victory over Manny Pacquiao on August 21st, and he’d like to continue the momentum from that fight.
Pacquiao initially spoke of wanting to face Ugas in a rematch, but he changed his mind and retired suddenly.
For Ugas, it’s a tough adjustment to go from having the possibility of facing Pacquiao in a lucrative rematch to making far less money in a risky title defense against the young 27-year-old Lithuanian Eimantas Stanionis.
There’s arguably just as much risk for Ugas fighting the talented Stanionis as there would be against the 42-year-old Pacquiao, but less money.
The WBA has made their decision and Ugas will have to go along with the program and try and win these next two fights to be the sole champion with their organization.
The good news is, if Ugas wins the tournament, he’ll be in a great position to face IBF/WBC 147-lb champion Errol Spence Jr. or the winner of the November 20th fight between WBO champion Terence Crawford and Shawn Porter in 2022.
There’s money to be made for Ugas as long as he beats Stanionis and the winner of the James vs. Butaev contest.
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