The WBC Position Regarding Unification Bouts
There has been a very unfortunate misinterpretation and miscommunication with regards to the WBC position concerning unification bouts between champions of different organizations.
The WBC has always held very good and respectful relationships with the other boxing organizations, and the WBC recognizes as world championships the ones sanctioned by the WBA, IBF, and WBO.
Over the years, there have been unification fights and unified champions who have given great performances and created interest among the fans around the world.
The WBC fully supported the heavyweight tournament in the 1980s, which led to Mike Tyson unifying all the titles. The WBC supported the middleweight tournament in which Bernard Hopkins became the unified champion. The WBC supported the heavyweight unification between Lennox Lewis and Evander Holyfield and the Showtime Super Six tournament, as well as other examples that can be found in the history of the sport.
The WBC fully supports those events which are made to create interest among the boxing industry and give benefits to the boxers and excitement to the fans.
On the other hand, it is a fact that each sanctioning organization has different rules to govern championship fights. It is also a fact that each organization has commitments and obligations to enforce regarding mandatory challengers, which often will cause such unified champions to lose recognition when those commitments are not fulfilled.
Whenever good fights between champions or unification tournaments are planned for the promotion of the sport, the industry and the common benefit for the boxers and fans, the WBC has always participated.
There have been cases where these fights between champions are signed with the intention to avoid the obligations of a champion and hurt the rights of third parties. There are also examples of these types of fights which create confusion and have no reason whatsoever.
The WBC will continue to be open to participate in well-organized programs, and with solid agreements between the organizations to avoid mishandling any case in which third parties are hurt.
The WBC is planning to meet with the WBA, IBF, and WBO to try to reach agreements with respect, reciprocity, and honorability in those cases that could lead to global interests and benefits to the boxing industry. There have been several meetings in the past that have found empathy and reciprocity to move forward.
This will be a priority for 2014.