By: Hans Themistode
For as much as both Demetrius Andrade and Jermall Charlo don’t like each other, they share a considerable amount of similarities.
The pair turned pro in 2008 just a mere two months apart. Andrade (30-0, 18 KOs) captured his first world title at 154 pounds in 2013. Charlo (32-0, 22 KOs) quickly followed him one year later to win his first world championship one year later in the same weight class. Charlo would then bring home his second world title in as many weight classes in 2018 when he nabbed the WBC middleweight title. Following the same pattern, Andrade would do the same six months later, winning the WBO middleweight championship against Walter Kautondokwa.
At the moment, both Charlo and Andrade are considered the best that the 160-pound division has to offer. To end all debate on who should be crowned the best fighter in the weight class, fans have urged both men to step into the ring with each other. However, according to Ronnie Shields, trainer of Charlo, he advises that fans don’t hold their breath.
Simply put, the fight isn’t going to happen.
“It goes back years before to when Andrade signed a contract to fight his brother Jermell and Andrade was champion,” said Shields during an interview with Fight Hub TV. “Andrade backed out of the fight. Once he did that, they said they’ll never give him an opportunity to make money with them, in the sport of boxing.”
In 2014, a matchup between Jermell Charlo and Andrade was thought to be signed sealed and delivered. Their contest was set to be the co-feature to Amir Khan vs. Devon Alexander at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. Team Andrade was perturbed with what they believed was a low-fight offer to face Charlo.
According to Andrade’s father, Paul, his son was offered a contract of $250,000. Those numbers, however, were deemed unsatisfactory. Instead of pulling out of the fight immediately, team Andrade waited until the week of the fight to do so. Their thought process was that they wanted to give both sides more than enough time to increase the initial offer. Once team Andrade realized that more money was not coming down the pike, they opted to remove themselves from the card.
Although Charlo was found a replacement opponent, he lost a then, career-high payday and the opportunity to fight for a world title. Both Jermell and Jermall have pointed to that infamous incident as the main reason why a showdown between them is unlikely to ever occur.
But while fans believe Jermall Charlo and his team should move past those issues of the past, Shields doesn’t have that same thought process. With a chance to set the record straight on what exactly happened nearly a decade ago, Shields pulled back the curtain on everything that took place behind the scenes.
“Of course everybody wants to see it but some things are unforgivable,” explained Shields. “To me, that’s one of those things. You denied his brother an opportunity to fight for a world title, for no reason. Well, the reasoning was, he left his promoter and went to Jay-Z. Jay-Z didn’t like the fight and told him not to take it so he didn’t take it. That’s something he has to live with for the rest of his life.”