Jermell Charlo was scheduled to face Demetrius Andrade on Saturday, December 13 in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was Charlo’s first (and long awaited) world title opportunity.
But Andrade, the WBO junior middleweight champion, pulled out of the fight last week, saying he was suddenly “unavailable” for the bout.
According to ESPN.com’s Dan Rafael, Andrade was unhappy with his proposed $300,000 purse and the lack of communication between he and his promoters.
Charlo is now scheduled to face Mario Alberto Lozano. The bout will be aired on Showtime Extreme.
“It’s crazy disappointing,” said Charlo of missing out on the WBO title shot. “I was so upset, but I had to continue to train and focus…Right now, we’re still training, and I don’t want to mentally let it beat me.”
Charlo, 24, said 2014 was his best year to date. He defeated Gabriel Rosado in January and Charlie Ota in May. Both wins were by unanimous decision.
While Andrade’s team indicated through a press release that the bout with Charlo could possibly be rescheduled at a future date, Charlo said he wasn’t solely looking for a fight with Andrade any longer.
“Because of the way he pulled out before, I’m not putting all my eggs in one basket any more. I’m going to continue to shop around and continue to get other fights if I have to. If this fight comes through for me, I’ll accept it.”
Charlo said Andrade pulling out of the fight surprised him, but that he suspects it comes down to Andrade, the champion, being offered less money for the bout than Charlo, the challenger.
“If I was the champion, I wouldn’t want the challenger making more money than me.”
But Charlo said he wasn’t buying that Andrade was “unavailable” to fight him on December 13.
“In reality, he was available, but it’s all about the [money]. And I have to respect the business aspect of it.”
Charlo is sharp. He knows how the economics of boxing works.
“It has to be money. It’s probably an issue between him and a promoter because the network was good, my promoter was good, my manager was good, my team was good—it was 100 percent done to me. I think something else happened and it ruined that process, so that’s why they came out of nowhere and said he’s unavailable.”
Still, Charlo expects big things for his career in 2015 and beyond. He said he wasn’t looking past Lozano, but that he had worked hard all year for big fights to come around and that he’d be ready to fight on December 13 no matter who showed up to fight him.
Charlo is gym rat. He and his brother, Jermall, train at Plex in Houston year-round whether they have fights scheduled or not. The two are very competitive with each other, and it helps push them forward during long training sessions.
(Jermall is scheduled to face Lenny Bottai on December 13 on the same card. It’s a IBF junior middleweight title eliminator bout and will be televised on Showtime before Amir Khan vs. Devon Alexander.)
Charlo said 2015 would be his year.
“If I could get back in the ring in January, I would. I’m really looking forward to a world title in 2015 and big fights, period.”
I asked Charlo who he’d fight next year if he could pick any fighter in the world.
“I would fight Canelo [Alvarez]. Because Canelo is a big name. We’re both young. It’s a great fight and it’s right around the time I should be back in the ring.”
Still, Charlo said he’d be ready for whatever 2015 brings him.
“I’m down for whatever, whoever has titles.”
Charlo-McCarson Fundraiser Update
Before Charlo faces Lozano though, he’ll face me in the ring. The bout will take place at Plex in Stafford, Texas (just outside of Houston) at 10 am on Saturday, December 6.
My beatdown at Charlo’s hands will not be open to the public, but Boxing Channel will video the spectacle and post it soon after.
So don’t worry, you will see it.
We will spar for three rounds, each round three minutes long. I am in Week 5 of my six-week training camp. My ankles are trashed. Both my knees hurt. My legs are sore. My hands are mauled. My knuckles are swollen. Everything on my body hurts.
But I’ve gotten into the best shape of my life training with the fighters over at Plex. It’s been difficult but I’ve been given a first-hand experience of what it’s truly like to live as a fighter.
Charlo calls it torture. He’s right.
I’ve not cheated in one way during camp. I’ve done every single workout every single day. I haven’t eaten one bad thing. I’ve not had one sip of alcohol or one puff of a cigar. Hell, I didn’t eat one piece of candy on Halloween, and our Thanksgiving meal is paleo-diet approved.
I’m all in.
But if you care for such things, please remember I’m not all in for just me. I’m all in for a kid named Corbin Glasscock from Tyler, Texas who was diagnosed with bone cancer just last month. Jermell is all in for him, too. And the only reason either of us agreed to do this was to help raise money for the family.
When I fight Charlo next weekend, Corbin will be coming off his third straight week of chemotherapy. Doctors gave Corbin a 50 percent chance to beat cancer, which if you think about it is a lot better than my chance of beating Charlo.
But Corbin needs expensive treatments to have his best chance, so please spare whatever you can to help his family pay for them. Whatever you can give is appreciated. No donation is too small. Together, we can do big things for Corbin.