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WBA strips Alexander Besputin, orders Yordenis Ugas-Abel Ramos for vacant title

Radzhab Butaev, who narrowly lost to Besputin for the vacant belt, gets first crack at the winner

Vasiliy Lomachenko v Anthony Crolla - Weigh-in Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images
Patrick Stumberg is a freelance writer for SB Nation, first joining the network in 2011 before linking up with Bad Left Hook in 2015.

Two weeks after WBA “world” welterweight champion Alexander Besputin’s ‘B’ sample from his December bout with Radzhab Butaev tested positive for ligandrol, the sanctioning body has officially stripped Besputin of the belt. Rather than give Butaev another shot at the title, however, they’ve ordered #1 Yordenis Ugas to face #6 Abel Ramos for the belt with the expectation that the winner face Butaev in his first defense.

This is stupid an overcomplicated, but this is the WBA, whom we’ve established are total cretins.

Ugas (25-4, 12 KO) seemingly outboxed Shawn Porter in a bid for the WBC belt in March of last year, only to walk away empty-handed after a questionable split decision. He’s since run roughshod over Omar Figueroa and Mike Dallas Jr., stopping the latter this past February in a PBC main event.

Following a majority decision loss to Jamal James in 2018, Ramos (26-3-2, 20 KO) spent some time in Mexico crushing such pugilistic luminaries as Jorge Luis Babuca (5-27-2), Hector Mendoza (5-14-3), and “unknown” (?-?). Since returning to the States, he’s beaten Francisco Santana by decision, knocked out Jimmy Williams, and scored a literal last-second comeback stoppage of fellow PBC vet Bryant Perrella.

Ugas-Butaev would have been a much better fight, but after seeing Ramos’ struggles with Perrella, odds are that’s the fight we’ll ultimately get once this one’s done.

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