The World Boxing Council (WBC) had its 60th annual convention this week in Acapulco, Mexico – a gathering to discuss rulings, mandatories, ratings, and fighters.
We’ve compiled a list of some of the best and most intriguing fights ordered that should, in theory, move each division forward.
Deontay Wilder vs Andy Ruiz
Wilder and Ruiz facing off has been long rumoured. Now officially called for, fans should get the chance to see one of the most intriguing style match ups the heavyweight division has to offer.
With both coming off of solid wins, this battle between PBC fighters should be easy to make and puts a clear challenge in front of Tyson Fury once he has his business with Derek Chisora and Oleksandr Usyk settled.
Errol Spence vs Keith Thurman
Spence’s next fight was never going to be met with excitement given the fact that fans once again thought they were close to a Terence Crawford unification bout. Having said that, facing a former champion in Thurman isn’t the worst of match ups, assuming the challenger can stay injury free.
Whilst Spence will defend his WBC, IBF, and WBA belts against ‘One Time’ Thurman, his rival Crawford puts the WBO belt on the line against David Avanesyan. It would be great to write that fans will then see a unification bout, however we’ve learned that hope for those negotiations to go well is futile.
David Benavidez vs Caleb Plant
Benavidez and Plant made headlines recently by announcing that they had agreed terms for a fight and that formal details would be announced soon. In a sport where top contenders fighting each other is rare, and only tends to happen after a will-they-won’t-they negotiation period, it was refreshing.
The winner here will become the mandatory challenger for Saul ‘Canelo’ Álvarez’ super-middleweight belt. The Mexican champion will either face a new test in Benavidez – someone fans have been calling for him to face for a while now – or give Plant the chance at redemption in a rematch after knocking him out in their first meeting.
Shakur Stevenson vs Isaac Cruz
This will be Stevenson’s first test at lightweight since relinquishing his WBC, WBO, and Ring super-featherweight titles for failing to make weight in his last contest.
His move up adds even more excitement to a stacked division in which Devin Haney is undisputed champion, and expected to soon put that to the test against Vasiliy Lomachenko.
However, many fans are already disappointed with this one. Not because ‘Pitbull’ Cruz isn’t a good measuring stick for Stevenson – quite the opposite. They believe that they’ll be let down by the two promotional camps – PBC and Top Rank – failing to make the fight happen despite the sanctioning body’s ruling.
We wait to be proven wrong, but don’t be surprised if Stevenson’s first 135 bout is somebody else entirely.
Teofimo Lopez vs Sandor Martin
Lopez’ has his second fight at super-lightweight coming up in December when he’ll face off against Jose Pedraza. Pedraza has most recently lost to José Ramirez and drawn with Richard Commey, and represents a slow moving start to ‘Teo’s campaign in a new division.
It turns out he’s not happy with the Sandor Martin (40-2, 13 KOs) ruling, either. He tweeted WBC’s President, Mauricio Sulaiman, saying: I would like to inform you that my team and Top Rank tried to make a fight with Martin for MSG however he did not want to fight. He easily priced himself out to not fight, so please, let’s do better.
As negotiations go, it could be off to a better start…
Sebastian Fundora vs Tony Harrison
Fundora is super welterweight Interim Champion for the WBC, and this fight against Harrison will determine who is the mandatory challenger for the winner of Jermell Charlo (154lb Undisputed Champion) and Tim Tszyu, which will take place in January 2023.
For a full list of mandatories and ordered scraps, visit the WBC’s official website here.