A massive shake up has occurred in the Featherweight division which 2011 ESPN prospect of the year, Gary Russell Jr pulling out of his IBF eliminator with Luis Franco.
BoxingScene.com reported that Golden Boy Promotions wanted the fight on their Showtime card on June 30th, but Franco’s promoter, Gary Shaw who won the purse bid had other plans and was looking to place the fight on HBO.
It’s not the first fight that Russell has declined in 2012 with his promoters contacting Billy Dib’s management team to organise a fight with the Australian IBF world champion which they accepted, only for Russell’s promoters to cancel the fight citing that their undefeated star isn’t ready for the title fight.
Russell is expected to still fight on the June 30th card but will face a lesser opponent in a bid to fight more regularly. The IBF is yet to announce their next move but it is expected that Franco will become Billy Dib’s mandatory challenger for later this year.