The World Boxing Association (WBA) obliged the unified world cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Uysk (16-0-0) to defend his WBA “Super” title vs. Russia’s Denis Lebedev (32-2-0).
— World of Boxing Promotions (@worldofbox) August 14, 2017
Lebedev is the mandatory challenger for the belt, but there is a good chance this fight won’t materialize, as the Ukrainian intends to move up to the heavyweight division. According to the rumors, Usyk will be making his highly anticipated debut in the blue ribbon division on May 18 in Chicago.
If that is the case, Usyk will be stripped of his belt and Lebedev will face the Brit Lawrence Okolie (11-0-0).
— BoxingScene.com (@boxingscene) January 10, 2019
Still, Usyk and Lebedev’s camps were given 8 days to negotiate and if nothing happens there, a purse bid was scheduled for March 28 in Panama City. As a champion, the 32-year-old southpaw from Kyiv is entitled to 75 percent of the winning bid and Lebedev 25 percent.