The young veteran plans to make a strong case for another world title shot against the unbeaten Sebastian Fundora when the two super welters face off Saturday night in a PBC on SHOWTIME main event.
Erickson Lubin is ready for his title fight.
Lubin will take another major step toward that goal Saturday night, when he faces undefeated Sebastian Fundora in a high-stakes main event for the WBC Interim Super Welterweight title at the Theater at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas.
The bout tops a stacked trio of 154-pound matchups in a PBC event on SHOWTIME (10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT).
After knocking out former unified champion Jeison Rosario last June, Lubin (24-1, 17 KOs) feels he’s already done more than enough to deserve another shot at the super welterweight title.
“I wanted to fight the Jermell Charlo-Brian Castano winner,” Lubin said. “But with that fight being a draw, I wasn’t going to wait in line, just sit here, and waste my time while they figure it out.”
With Charlo-Castano 2 set for Saturday, May 14 – a battle for the undisputed crown – Lubin opted to keep busy and take the next in line, Fundora, a spindly 6-foot-5 slugger nicknamed “The Towering Inferno.”
“I’ll beat top contender after top contender, doing a champion’s job,” said Lubin. “So, by the time it's time for me to become world champion, which I will be, it'd just be big fights lined up. They may overlook me or underestimate me now, but by the time it's all said and done, I’ll be in the history books.
“I'm fine with Sebastian being the next dude in line. He’s beaten who he’s had to beat, but I’m number one in these rankings and I plan on keeping my spot. My job to run him over on Saturday night.”
Certainly, Fundora (18-0-1, 12 KOs) isn’t a pushover, with his unprecedented height in the weight class, unbeaten record, and tarantula-like 80-inch reach. The two crossed paths when they were younger.
“His dad used to take me to a few tournaments as an amateur a decade ago,” Lubin recalled.
Lubin says he was never close to Fundora. Nor is he intimidated by his dimensions. “Everybody is fascinated by his height. I'm not. I've had sparring partners in this camp as tall as 6-foot-4, 6-foot-5. He's vulnerable to getting hit a lot. He's not one of those tall fighters who uses his reach. He’s not a slick fighter.”
Lubin has only fought orthodox fighters in his pro career yet he’s not concerned with the 24-year-old Fundora being a fellow southpaw, either.
“He's not like one of those crafty southpaws who trick you into something,” Lubin added. “He's not a setup artist. He is a very basic fighter who comes forward. We’re going to make him scared to throw a lot of shots, because he’s definitely going to pay for it. If he makes one false move, it’ll cost him. I'm not underestimating the kid because he's worked his way up, but Saturday night is going to be my highlight. I'm there to make a statement—and I will.”
“ I'm there to make a statement—and I will. ” Super Welterweight Contender - Erickson Lubin
It’s been a long climb back to this position for the Orlando, Florida native. Lubin was only 22-years-old when he fought for his first world title back in October 2017. The aforementioned Charlo turned back his challenge in one round, a loss that would have sent many careers into a tailspin.
Not Lubin. “I've learned a lot. I was three years in the game when I fought Charlo. It just came so quick because I just pretty much ran through the division real early.
“Since then, I’ve learned on the business side and more as a fighter – patience, maturity, training camps, different preparation, all that type of stuff. It's really helped me out a lot. I'm still getting better. I'm not even my prime. Yeah, I'm 26. I'm just about to reach my prime and I see myself getting better every camp.”
The biggest change was enlisting the help of respected trainer Kevin Cunningham, who guided Cory Spinks and Devon Alexander – both southpaws like Lubin – to multiple world titles.
“I'm more disciplined, especially being with Kevin,” Lubin said. “He like a military type in training, zero tolerance. You’ve got to be there with him or he's not going to fool with you. If you're not serious about the game, he's not following you. That’s definitely helped me help me as a fighter, as a father, and as a man.”
Lubin typically trains out of Cunningham’s West Palm Beach gym. For this fight, the duo moved their camp to Las Vegas, a refreshing change for the fighter.
“I go for a walk and it’s a lot different from Florida,” said Lubin. “I usually see the beaches, but now I’m around mountains and the desert. I’m not doing much else. I’m starting to feel like a caged animal and I’m ready for the fight.”
With another world title shot at stake, the plan is to put on a show under the Las Vegas lights.
“I'm going to figure this boy out early,” Lubin declared. “If I get the stoppage, that would be lovely. But if I don't, I’m going to beat him up for 12 rounds.
“I was built for this. Pressure makes diamonds. I’m going to go out there and I’m going to shine like a star.”
For a closer look at Erickson Lubin, check out his fighter page.