Ugas-Stanionis: WBA schedules stock market hearing on December 9 in Miami

Yordenis Ugas is grateful for his title reign, if not the manner in which he is bound to maintain that status.

A tender hearing has been added to the schedule to determine the promotional rights of Ugas-commissioned WBA welterweight title defense against Lithuanian Eimantas Stanionis. The sanctioning body took the step after exhausting all options after a period of more than two months since the fight was first commissioned in September.

The session will take place on December 9 in Miami, open to all WBA-registered promoters who must bid no less than $ 200,000 for the fight. The winning bid will be split 75/25 in favor of Ugas as the reigning titlist.

The fight was first ordered on September 15 as a four-way box-off with the intention of reducing the welterweight division to a single titlist. Ugas-Stanionis was packed with a long-awaited WBA “World” title fight, which saw Radzhab Butaev (14-0, 11KOs; 1NC) dethrone Jamal James (27-2, 12KOs) via a ninth round stoppage on October 30 at Michelob ULTRA Arena in Las Vegas.

Butaev will face the winner of Ugas-Stanionis, assuming the fight progresses.

Ugas (27-4, 12KOs) – a 2008 Olympian for Cuba before moving to Miami and now Las Vegas – hoped for a more publicized fight in the wake of a twelve-round victory over legendary former eight-division titlist Manny Pacquiao (62-8-2, 39KO) on August 22 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The fight came on short notice, with Ugas replacing injured Errol Spence (27-0, 21KOs) with only eleven days’ notice.

Ugas’ convincing victory ended any debate over which title he held. Cuban export went from WBA “World” to “Super” at the start of the year at the expense of Pacquiao, whose inactivity and inability to inform the WBA of the belt’s defense plans resulted in a downgrade in WBA “Champion in Recess”.

The case was settled in the ring, with Ugas scoring his career best win, then enjoying a victory lap with the sanctioning body. A conference call was held in honor of Ugas, coupled with the announcement of the WBA’s plans to reduce its number of recognized titlists and abolish its interim titles.

It was the last time Ugas – and, quite frankly, Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) – received good news from the sanctioning body.

Several rulings were subsequently issued to the detriment of the PBC, which called for several more notable fights than those ordered by the WBA. A request has been denied for Ugas to face Spence in a three-belt unification fight next February in lieu of a no-interest mandatory title defense against Stanionis (13-0, 9KO; 1ND), a rising contender who could develop further.

With the rejected request came a 30-day negotiation period ordered by the WBA in October. Ugas was represented by TGB Promotions, while Stanionis, who has spent his entire professional career on PBC shows, is promoted by Richard Schaefer, who transferred the 2016 Olympian from his late Ringstar Promotions to the new company Probellum. Stanionis is also represented by veteran boxing manager Shelly Finkel, who, along with Schaefer, remained opposed to Ugas’ request to continue a title unification fight instead.

The negotiations did not go very far between the parties. The WBA broke the bad news during the Thanksgiving holiday season that the deal is now available to all WBA-registered promoters.

Stanionis hasn’t fought since a No-Decision with former titlist Luis Collazo last August, two weeks before Ugas won over Pacquiao. Earlier this year, Stanionis fended off determined former title challenger Thomas Dulorme to win a twelve-round decision last April.

Ugas won the vacant WBA “World” welterweight title in a twelve-round decision victory over Abel Ramos last September. The victory over Pacquiao marks his only title defense to date.

In accordance with WBA regulations, Ugas’ failure to comply with the ordained title fight will result in the declaration of the vacancy of the WBA “Super” title. Conversely, Stanionis’ failure to move forward with the fight will result in his loss of a mandatory title shot as well as his removal from a title eligible standings.

Ugas-Stanionis is one of at least two WBA tender hearings scheduled for December 9. A session is also scheduled to determine the promotional rights for the revamped secondary heavyweight title fight between WBA “World” title Trevor Bryan and “Champion in Recess” and former title claimant Mahmoud Charr.

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for Twitter: @JakeNDaBox

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