According to a report at ESPN.com, promoters Bob Arum of Top Rank and Sampson Lewkowicz are looking at a legal battle over the contract of super middleweight titleholder David Benavidez, with Arum trying to sign the 21-year-old fighter, and Lewkowicz saying he’s got Benavidez under a deal through 2021.
Benavidez (20-0, 17 KO) won the vacant WBC 168-pound title last September in a Fight of the Year candidate victory over Ronald Gavril. In February, they rematched, with Benavidez winning a more decisive decision.
“We signed him. We want to give him big fights. But I don’t really want to talk about it right now because there’s going to be some litigation.”
Lewkowicz is a lot more animated:
“I am not naive and I am not weak. I never had a problem with Bob Arum before. We had a good relationship but no more. Arum is trying to steal the work I did. With David, I took him from nothing to world champion. But with money you can destroy any contract. It’s so unspeakable what Arum did. It’s a disgrace for an old man to do something like this. It’s savage. I hope he can sleep at night because what he did was totally wrong.”
For fight fans, the real news here is probably less where Benavidez ends up going forward than how long it will take him to get back into the ring. Lewkowicz believes Arum is “destroying a young man’s career,” as Benavidez likely would not be able to fight anyone with litigation going on.
Benavidez was, until this news, expected to fight on July 28 against Matt Korobov on the Garcia-Easter Showtime card.