Luis DeCubas Jr., the manager of junior middleweight contender Erislandy Lara, had hoped that his fighter would be treated like the winner of his controversial majority decision loss to three-time titlist Paul Williams on July 9 at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.
But nearly two weeks later, DeCubas said Lara still does not have an opponent, much less a television date on a network.
“We spoke to [Golden Boy CEO] Richard [Schaefer,] and he’s said that there are no HBO dates available. I told them that he would be ready to fight in September if something opens up,” said DeCubas.
“We’re just trying to see what the best options are. We’ll see what Golden Boy puts together in the next week or two, and, hopefully, move forward.”
Williams (40-2, 27 knockouts) was awarded an unpopular decision over the Lara (15-1-1, 10 KOs) by three ringside judges who were subsequently suspended by the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board.
HBO’s unofficial scorer Harold Lederman had it for Lara, 117-111, close to the consensus of the general ringside media.
“Everybody knows who won the fight, and we just want him to be treated like the winner, but we don’t feel as if he’s being treated like the winner. I mean, Victor Ortiz beat Andre Berto, and now he’s fighting Floyd Mayweather,” said DeCubas.
“If Paul Williams would have come out of that fight and won clearly, you know, they would have found him an HBO date. So now, we’re just trying to figure it all out.”
DeCubas said that he would like to see Lara back in the ring in September, perhaps against titleholders Cornelius Bundrage (31-4, 18 KOs) or Sergei Dzinziruk (37-1, 23 KOs), respectively, of the IBF and the WBO.
“We’d love Bundrage. I think that Bundrage would be a good fight for him, coming off of the way Lara has looked,” said DeCubas. “Sechew Powell and all of those guys that Bundrage beat, none of them compares to Paul Williams. So Lara definitely would deserve that opportunity.”
Dzinziruk’s promoter Gary Shaw said that a clash of southpaws with Lara would become viable “Only if HBO’s going to give us the money.”
“We approached Golden Boy. We spoke, and everybody liked the fight. Great fight for pay per view,” said Shaw. “But there’s not enough money pay per view unless HBO can make a deal with us. That’s the whole story.”
Asked where the Dzinziruk-Lara fight stood, Shaw said, “I don’t know,” adding, “You would have to ask Richard Schaefer. He’s dealing with HBO.”
Schaefer could not be reached.
“We’d fight any one of those guys on HBO or Showtime, you know? The kid’s got to get back in the ring,” said DeCubas. “He deserves it, you know, off of the way he performed against a pound-for-pound fighter.”