Ever since Jr. Middleweight Erickson Lubin (20-1, 15 KOs) lost to then WBC champion Jermell Charlo by first-round knockout in 2017 he essentially disappeared. He fought only time in 2018, easily dispatching of Silverio Ortiz via fourth-round stoppage.
That match did little to prove anything.
Lubin was once highly regarded in the boxing world and many wanted to see how he would perform against a credible opponent. Would he rise to the occasion and prove that his loss is behind him or would he falter underneath the pressure once again? On Saturday, February 9, 2019 at the Dignity Health Sports Park, in Carson, California we got our answer.
Lubin knocked out former champion Ishe Smith (29-11, 12 KOs) in the third round. It was a major statement by Lubin. Smith had been in the ring with some of the biggest names in boxing and although he often times fell short, he always made a good account of himself and was never stopped.
Lubin walked right through him. Lubin might be officially back as a major player in the division, but there is only one way to find out.
Let’s take a look at who Erickson Lubin should be matched up with next.
Sergio Garcia (29-0, 13 KOs) might not be the most well-known fighter, but one thing is for sure–he can fight. Garcia is fresh off a win against former undefeated Ted Cheeseman, capturing the EBU European Jr. Middleweight championship.
It may not be the most prestigious title, but it does hold some value. Garcia is rated No. 2 by the WBC. He seems to be on his way to a title shot very soon. Lubin must be itching to get another shot at a world title himself. He still needs to secure a few more notable victories. Garcia could provide him with a stiff test.
If you’re a champion or true contender then at some point you will find yourself in the ring with Austin Trout (31-5, 17 KOs).
What do Canelo Alvarez, Erislandy Lara, Jarrett Hurd and both Jermell and Jermall Charlo have in common? They are all elite fighters and they have all beaten Trout. They are also either current or former world champions.
Trout may not be a true title contender anymore, but he is far from a gatekeeper. He has only lost to some of the very best in his division. If Lubin wants to prove that he is truly back to being a title contender, then a match with Trout is his best bet.
A match between Trout and Lubin would be both tactical and explosive. This is the contest Lubin should be aiming for next.