Robert Helenius believes he’s the WBA mandatory challenger to the winner of Usyk vs Joshua 2 despite links to Deontay Wilder.
The big Finn is in the form of his life after two victories over Adam Kownacki and has tied to Premier Boxing Champions for another fight.
Deontay Wilder fight
Speculation that he’s to be in the opposite corner to Wilder this fall could be troublesome for Helenius, though. It would divert him from a possible world title shot.
A loss against Wilder negates any chance of facing champion Oleksandr Usyk or challenger Anthony Joshua. Something Helenius thinks should be a given.
“I am rightfully the WBA mandatory. So, of course, I am interested in the Usyk vs Joshua winner,” Helenius told Sky Sports.
He continued by stating nobody else should get a shot before him.
“I definitely should be next. Every elimination bout after mine is bulls***. At this point, if we are not designated the mandatory after Usyk’s next fight, we will only have one option.”
That option would be to go down the legal route, which the WBA is familiar with at this point.
“My lawyers are very confident that the WBA has bungled this whole thing, so I am confident in my position.
“For now, I will stay focused on training and see how Usyk vs Joshua and my WBA situation play out.
“But I remain in a great position for something very big in the coming months for sure.”
Robert Helenius’ mandatory claim
That ‘something big’ could well be Wilder as WBN sees Helenius’ claim to be mandatory as one that could be challenged.
As the holder of a fictitious title that should never have existed in the ‘WBA Gold Championship,’ Helenius faces a problem.
The WBA quickly scrapped the belts from their belt list after massive criticism. The WBA Gold is meaningless regarding a title or title shot.
Helenius only earned the number two spot by winning the belt and is behind Michael Hunter in the rankings.
Hunter or Joyce
Therefore, Hunter would undoubtedly get the first option if it was the WBA’s turn. However, the WBO also sees Joe Joyce as next in line.
The IBF currently doesn’t have a mandatory after Kubrat Pulev got his chance against Joshua in 2020.
In a nutshell, the order will consist of Hunter or Joyce, possibly followed by the IBF. This scenario means Helenius would have to earn his shot again.
A fight against Hunter would be the order of the day to secure the mandatory position completely. But even that isn’t clear as the WBA put Hughie Fury above Helenius when ordering an eliminator that fell apart due to an injury to Tyson Fury’s cousin.
It’s all a mess right now. So Helenius should consider whether Al Haymon’s reported offer to fight Deontay Wilder is the better option.
The views expressed in this article are the opinions of Phil Jay.