What's Next For Charlo Brothers? Potential Opponents For Jermall, Jermell

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Saturday night went remarkably better for the Charlo twins than the previous evening they fought on the same card.

In their pay-per-view debuts, the polarizing champions were equally excellent while producing perhaps the most impressive victories of their respective careers. A few hours after Jermall Charlo convincingly conquered relentless Ukrainian challenger Sergiy Derevyanchenko in their 12-round middleweight title fight, Jermell Charlo took Jeison Rosario’s hardest shots, dropped him three times and surprisingly stopped him with a jab to the body early in the eighth round of their 154-pound championship unification match.

When asked afterward what they’d like to do next, Jermell Charlo said he’d fight any 154-pound opponent willing to get in the ring with the IBF/WBA/WBC champ. Jermall Charlo replied “Benjamin Franklin,” a reference to making as much money as possible for whoever he faces in his next defense of the WBC middleweight championship.

Below are five potential opponents, some more realistic than others, for each of the 30-year-old Charlos. Their options are listed alphabetically.

JERMALL CHARLO (31-0, 22 KOs)

Canelo Alvarez (53-1-2, 36 KOs): Boxing’s biggest star obviously is the most appealing opponent for Charlo. Unless his legal issue with DAZN leads to the termination of his long-term contract with that streaming service, it is highly unlikely that Alvarez-Charlo could happen next. If Mexico’s Alvarez, Golden Boy Promotions and DAZN can repair their professional partnerships, Alvarez probably will fight Gennadiy Golovkin a third time within the first half of 2021. Nevertheless, Ronnie Shields, Charlo’s trainer, told BoxingScene.com following his win versus Derevyanchenko that Charlo would move up to 168 pounds or even 175 for the opportunity to square off against Alvarez, whose next fight seemingly will be contested at the super middleweight limit.

Demetrius Andrade (29-0, 18 KOs): Facing Andrade would afford Charlo a chance to add the WBO 160-pound championship to his WBC belt. Andrade would be a difficult assignment for any middleweight because of the tall, skillful southpaw’s style. But based on the type of money DAZN is willing to spend now, as opposed to when Andrade signed a four-fight contract extension with Matchroom Boxing USA and DAZN before his last bout, Charlo-Andrade might be easier to make now if Showtime or FOX were willing to pay for it. Andrade is expected to partake in a non-title fight against a nondescript opponent sometime in November. Charlo-Andrade probably wouldn’t be as fan-friendly as Charlo-Derevyanchenko, but it’s an interesting option.

Chris Eubank Jr. (29-2, 22 KOs): England’s Eubank was the front-runner to challenge Charlo next after they won fights on the same Showtime card December 7 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Getting a shot at Charlo was one of the primary reasons Eubank signed with Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions. He hopes that it happens next, but American consumers will want a more tempting opponent if Charlo’s next fight is on pay-per-view. Eubank’s popularity in the United Kingdom could be a factor, however, because it would create another revenue stream from TV rights in the UK.

Gennadiy Golovkin (40-1-1, 35 KOs): Like Andrade, facing Golovkin would present Charlo with a chance to add another middleweight title to his WBC crown. If Golovkin successfully makes a mandated defense of his IBF title against Poland’s Kamil Szeremeta (21-0, 5 KOs), though, he almost certainly would battle Alvarez a third time in his following fight. Based on what Golovkin saw when Charlo defeated Derevyanchenko (13-3, 10 KOs), who gave Golovkin the roughest fight of his career last October 5, facing Charlo might not be something that interests Golovkin as he heads toward his 39th birthday. Golovkin-Charlo also would be very expensive and a complicated fight to make because of their network/streaming service affiliations. 

Jarrett Hurd (24-1, 16 KOs): The former IBF/IBO/WBA 154-pound champion hasn’t committed to moving up to middleweight, but Hurd has been mentioned as a potential opponent for Jermell Charlo and Jermall Charlo. A more tactical Hurd showed some defensive improvements in his last fight, his first bout with trainer Kay Koroma in his corner. The Accokeek, Maryland, native, defeated Francisco Santana (25-8-1, 12 KOs) by unanimous decision in that 10-rounder January 25 at Barclays Center. Either Charlo brother would represent a steep step up from Santana, but Hurd figures to want another big fight sometime in 2021.

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JERMELL CHARLO (34-1, 18 KOs)

Brian Castano (16-0-1, 12 KOs): The unbeaten Argentinean is the mandatory challenger for Patrick Teixeira’s WBO junior middleweight title. Castano, who fought to a debatable draw with Erislandy Lara in March 2019 at Barclays Center, clearly could beat Brazil’s Teixeira in the strong southpaw’s first title defense. If that happened, a title unification bout with Charlo probably would be easier to put together than Charlo-Teixeira because Castano and Charlo are PBC fighters.

Erislandy Lara (27-3-3, 15 KOs, 1 NC): The Cuban veteran would be a considerable underdog against Charlo at this point in his career. Lara is 37 and his legs aren’t what they once were, but the WBA world super welterweight champion is smart and skilled enough for this to be a reasonable bout to put together. It has been discussed for several years, but Lara might be tempted to accept this dangerous assignment if the money is right because he wants another sizable payday in the twilight of his career. Regardless, Lara needs to fight a top opponent after defeating huge underdogs Ramon Alvarez (28-8-3, 16 KOs, 1 NC) and Greg Vendetti (22-4-1, 12 KOs) in his past two appearances.

Erickson Lubin (23-1, 16 KOs): Charlo has made it clear that he doesn’t see any reason to box Lubin again. That’s an understandable stance when you consider Charlo’s one-punch, first-round knockout victory over him when Lubin was the mandatory challenger for his WBC super welterweight title in October 2017 at Barclays Center. Like it or not, Lubin has won five straight fights since Charlo stopped him and the Orlando, Florida, native again is the mandatory challenger for Charlo’s WBC belt. Their rematch might have to happen, unless Charlo is willing to give up one of his three titles, which would allow Lubin to fight another contender for that WBC belt. If they do fight again, their rematch clearly couldn’t headline a pay-per-view show.

Patrick Teixeira (31-1, 22 KOs): The Brazilian southpaw told BoxingScene.com this week that he gladly would face Charlo next if the WBO would grant him an exception to postpone his mandatory defense against Castano. Even if the WBO accommodated him, Charlo-Teixeira would be a difficult fight to make because of the contentious history between Golden Boy Promotions, which represents Teixeira, and Haymon, who works with Charlo. Still, fighting Teixeira would offer Charlo a chance to become the 154-pound division’s fully unified champion. Teixeira has yet to defend the WBO crown he won when he out-pointed the Dominican Republic’s Carlos Adames (18-1, 14 KOs) by unanimous decision last November 30 at The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas.

Julian Williams (27-2-1, 16 KOs, 1 NC): The former IBF/IBO/WBA champ has publicly stated that he was assured, presumably by Haymon, that he would fight the Charlo-Rosario winner next. He wants to redeem himself following his surprising, fifth-round TKO loss to Rosario (20-2-1, 14 KOs) on January 18 at Liacouras Center in Philadelphia, Williams’ hometown. Williams could’ve fought Rosario in an immediate rematch, but he declined to exercise that contractual clause in favor of having plastic surgery to repair scar tissue above his left eye. Williams would be an underdog against Charlo, but Hurd was a 6-1 favorite over him when Williams upset him by unanimous decision in their 12-rounder in May 2019 at EagleBank Arena in Fairfax, Virginia. 

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.

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