After a lengthy partnership with Top Rank and Zanfer, WBO featherweight champion Emanuel Navarrete took to Instagram today to announce his free agency.
Navarrete (35-1, 29 KO) has worked with Arum and Co. since his star-making duology against Isaac Dogboe, maintaining an extremely busy but not always challenging schedule. Having dispatched Christopher Diaz and mandatory challenger Joet Gonzalez this year, he presumably has free reign to pursue big-name fights for a while.
Arum had previously revealed his desire to make a mini-tournament at 130 pounds, starting with Navarrete against Oscar Valdez, but “Vaquero’s” options at 126 have now grown considerably. PBC has WBC champ Gary Russell Jr and WBA “super” champ Leo Santa Cruz, while Matchroom has WBA “world” champ Leigh Wood and access to freshly crowned IBF titlist Kiko Martinez. Unification looks far more likely than it did yesterday, and pretty much every matchup on that list has the potential to be an absolute banger.