A “heavyweight champion” despite not beating anyone in the top 100

World Boxing News has never shied away from calling out the boxing organizations for their unfathomable decisions. The heavyweight division is a particular bone of contention.

Firstly, in recently derecognizing the WBA, WBN has kept a close eye on things to see if any mistakes get rectified, or any functional changes come to the fore.

Sadly, things are seemingly getting worse. One of the significant factors new boxing fans would rather watch YouTubers is the belt situation.

There are too many belts. At present, five men can call themselves a heavyweight champion of sorts.

Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua remain the only two ‘real’ rulers in the top division. But Dillian Whyte, Mahmoud Charr, and Trevor Bryan all hold secondary straps.

Whyte is the WBC interim champion. Charr the WBA “Champion in Recess” and Bryan the WBA “Regular

Bryan is of particular interest. The American earned his shot at the ‘interim’ WBA strap by defeating two fighters with just four wins in 48 bouts between them.

Previously claiming that version by defeating BJ Flores, an-ex cruiserweight contender who had been inactive for fourteen months, Bryan was then out of action himself for two and a half years.

That’s one fight in over three years.

Despite this mass of inactivity, Bryan was put forward for the vacant WBA ‘Regular’ belt and duly defeated Bermane Stiverne to claim it.

As WBN had pointed out tirelessly, Stiverne hadn’t won a contest in five years plus change. He should not have had the chance.

Charr, who was the champion at that time, was stripped of the title for visa issues. A reason unimaginable during a pandemic.

Trevor Bryan Don King Heavyweight
Don King


Nonetheless, Bryan is now second in line to Joshua’s throne and will one day gain the chance to be the mandatory challenger.

This scenario is without the WBA considering that Bryan hasn’t defeated anybody in the top 100 during his entire career.

Some rankings moves seem to have a basis on the promotional outfit involved. As we all know, Don King has a long-standing history with the WBA.

Kings is one of several favored promoters. Highly controversial and a huge reason why WBN refuses to acknowledge their sanctioning of ‘title bouts.’

Until this changes, that will remain in place and be a danger to boxing ever gaining a solid reputation back to compete with the social media influencing generation.

Furthermore, it could be a long road back.

The views expressed in this article are that of the Editor, Phil Jay. WBN is the top-visited independent boxing news website in the world.

Phil Jay is the Editor of WBN. An Auxiliary member of the Boxing Writers Association of America since 2018. And a member of the Sports Journalists’ Association. Follow on Twitter @PhilJWBN.