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Arsen Goulamirian elevated to “regular” WBA champion, gets next crack at Denis Lebedev

Goulamirian stopped Mark Flanagan in October

SPORTEL Monaco Sports Media & Media Convention Day 2 Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images for Sportel

Don King does what the WBA doesn’t.

WBA “gold” cruiserweight champion Arsen Goulamirian is now the “regular” champion, displacing the now-stripped Beibut Shumenov and putting himself in position to challenge newly reinstated “super” champion Denis Lebedev.

From my limited understanding of French (and the work of superior polyglots), it seems as though Shumenov’s (18-2, 12 KO) promoter, Don King, utterly failed to put the fight between Shumenov and Goulamirian (24-0, 16 KO) together after winning the purse bid, offering three potential dates and locations (April 13th in Monaco, April 20th in Kazakhstan, and May 13th in New York) that all fell through. Shumenov subsequently developed respiratory issues that left him out of action for the immediate future, leading the WBA to upgrade France’s Goulamirian.

Lebedev (32-2, 23 KO) was champion-in-recess during Oleksandr Usyk’s run, and the WBA ordered Usyk to face him after his knockout of Tony Bellew. Usyk instead vacated and moved to heavyweight, leaving Lebedev to reclaim the belt. There were talks of him facing Lawrence Okolie, but nothing appears to have come of that.

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