Jermell Charlo told Erickson Lubin that he wasn’t ready. It would take the WBC super welterweight title-holder less than three minutes to make those words true as he scored a shocking one-punch KO.
What looked to be a feel-out round with each fighter probing jabs evaporated when the southpaw Lubin ducked a jab and ran blindly into a right uppercut. The shot crumpled Lubin sideways on the canvas, where the former Prospect of the Year convulsed rigidly in an unsettling, arms-outstretched pose. The referee killed the count midway to give Charlo the second successful defense of his title.
There was a little drama afterward with Jermell claiming someone ringside threw a chair at his twin brother Jermall. In an emotionally-charged scene that resembled the aftermath of Jermall’s KO win over Julian Williams, Jermell yelled into the mic about taking on all comers and how Lubin was not in his league.
There are those who will be turned off by the Charlo’s “sore winner” antics. I’m not because it’s clear they take the prefight hype personally to fuel their fire inside the ring. You can’t argue with the results — both brothers are knocking out all comers, including wiping out fellow young guns that most observers predicted would give them tough fights (J-Rock, Lubin).
Like it or not, the Charlos are legit and a danger to any fighter competing from 154-160. You’ve been warned.
As for Lubin, this crushing defeat will start raising more questions about how the PBC has moved their prospects. For all his natural talent, Lubin didn’t have any competition to prepare him for a champion like Charlo. Not even a decent gatekeeper on the level of a Gabe Rosado or Vanes Martirosyan. He’s still young and probably more embarrassed than sustaining any significant physical damage, but you never know the psychological effects of that first defeat on a fighter.