Emanuel Navarrete has been granted “super champion” status by the WBO at 130 lbs, closely following the same ruling in favor of Teofimo Lopez at 140.
The reasons to name Navarrete “super champion” are similar to the Lopez ruling — he’s very good, he’s a star, he fights on ESPN, etc.
A reminder that this is the WBO, not the WBA, who have for years had the “super world” and “world” champion debacle. The WBO could, potentially, go in that direction, but in this case, the “super champion” status basically amounts to granting a fighter extra leeway in terms of mandatory defense orders, and the ability to be considered a mandatory challenger if moving up or down in weight.
In other words, it’s not something boxing fans will really notice all that much, unless they’re mandatory defense fanatics.
Navarrete (38-1, 31 KO) has won WBO titles at 122, 126, and 130, which played a big role in the ruling, claiming the 130 lb belt this past February in a vacant title fight against Liam Wilson.
The 28-year-old “Vaquero” successfully defended against Oscar Valdez on Aug. 12, and is slated to return in a defense against Robson Conceicao on Nov. 16, As of Sept. 15, Conceicao had been inserted as the WBO’s No. 11-ranked contender. When the fight was announced, Conceicao was not ranked in the published top 15 by the organization.
Other current WBO super champions are Oleksandr Usyk at heavyweight, Canelo Alvarez at super middleweight, Jermell Charlo at junior middleweight (that ends soon), Terence Crawford at welterweight, the aforementioned Teofimo Lopez at 140, Devin Haney at lightweight, and Naoya Inoue at 122.
Lopez and Navarrete are the only names in the group who are not undisputed or unified champions.