Confusion as Vasyl Lomachenko denies requesting WBC Franchise status
Pound for pound star and competing legend Vasyl Lomachenko has denied asking the World Boxing Council to bestow Franchise status on him.
Reports suggested Top Rank’s Carl Moretti was an integral part of Lomachenko being elevated to the WBC’s top honor at the WBC Convention.
President Mauricio Sulaiman then stated in an interview, according to Lomachenko, that the Ukrainian had requested the title.
As confusion over the situation reigns, ‘Loma’ has now stated in a video that this wasn’t the case.
Lomachenko even went as far as revealing he never once asked to be given the WBC Franchise championship.
WBC chiefs made the move shortly after confirming Canelo Alvarez as the first Franchise honoree. This means Canelo is now a WBC champion for the remainder of his career.
The same will be said of Lomachenko, provided he still wants to keep the belt on the back of his recent discussion.
The 31 year-old did seem a little miffed at Sulaiman when explaining how things went down. A change-up which ultimately meant his ‘regular’ WBC lightweight belt was handed to Devin Haney.
It was only weeks prior that Lomachenko won the strap when beating Luke Campbell in London.
Lomachenko still wants to become the undisputed ruler at 135 pounds, something that now seems impossible in the eyes of the fans.
They, along with WBN on the current champions list, no longer regard Lomachenko as the WBC champion at lightweight.
So how can Lomachenko become fully unified if this is the case?
Several reports and guesstimations have suggested Lomachenko will be considered by the WBC to be undisputed regardless. This is because his new title counts in each and every division.
Should Lomachenko fight and beat IBF title holder Richard Commey in 2020, as expected, it will be interesting to see how the label is ratified.
If not Commey, Lomachenko has the potential option to drop back down to 130 pounds.
This could put Naoya Inoue, current at 122 pounds but aiming to move to 126 shortly, in the crosshairs for a huge meeting by the end of next year.
CURRENT LIGHTWEIGHT CHAMPIONS
VASYL LOMACHENKO – WBA / WBO Champion
RICHARD COMMEY – IBF Champion
DEVIN HANEY – WBC
Phil Jay is Editor of World Boxing News. Auxiliary member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay