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Major Boxing Belts and Organizations (All the Belts in Boxing Explained)

Major Boxing Belts and Organizations

Understanding all the belts in boxing and their significance can be a little tricky…

There are four major sanctioning bodies in boxing:

  • World Boxing Association (WBA)
  • World Boxing Council (WBC) (most prestigious*)
  • International Boxing Federation (IBF)
  • World Boxing Organization (WBO)

You may have seen multiple different colored belts held by some of the greatest boxers of all time – different belts are awarded from different boxing organizations (usually 1 of the main four boxing sanctioning bodies).

So we put together this comprehensive guide that delves deep into the complex realm of major boxing organizations and boxing belts, providing a clear understanding of the prestigious titles awarded by organizations like the WBA, WBC, IBF, and WBO.

By the end of this post, you’ll definitely be able to tell how many belts are there in boxing, how they impact the sport, and why being an undisputed champion garners so much respect.

Major Boxing Belts Key Takeaways

  • Again, there are four major sanctioning bodies in boxing:
    • World Boxing Association (WBA)
    • World Boxing Council (WBC)
    • International Boxing Federation (IBF)
    • World Boxing Organization (WBO)
  • WBC titles are often considered the most prestigious among boxing belts.
  • There is a potential total of up to 68 world title belts across all organizations and weight categories in professional boxing.
  • These boxing organizations handle boxer’s rankings, match ups, and work closely with promoters
  • Undisputed champion refers to boxers who hold boxing belts from all the four main boxing organizations.
  • Different boxer’s rankings may be hard to follow across the different organization but if you are looking for a simplified understanding of a boxer’s ranking, I recommend checking out The Ring’s rankings (or you can follow their wins and consider quality of opponents)

All the Belts in Boxing (How Many Belts Are There?)

At present, there are mainly four primary organizations recognized in the sport of boxing:

  1. World Boxing Association (WBA)
  2. World Boxing Council (WBC)
  3. International Boxing Federation (IBF)
  4. World Boxing Organization (WBO)

In boxing, there are 17 weight classes, with each class having its respective world championship title for each organization (so, 17×4=68 total belts). Considering this, there could be up to 68 world title belts across all weight divisions and organizations if each institution awards belts for the same weight divisions.

Note: Occasionally, certain boxing organizations might also bestow “interim” or “regular” champion titles, which further complicates the number of belts awarded.

What Are the 4 Main Boxing Organizations?

Again, the four primary sanctioning bodies in boxing are:

  • World Boxing Association (WBA)
  • World Boxing Council (WBC)
  • International Boxing Federation (IBF)
  • World Boxing Organization (WBO)

Note: there is also a fifth pretty popular *independent* sanctioning body named, “International Boxing Organization (IBO)” which we will go over futher down this post

These organizations are responsible for upholding regulations, ranking fighters, and awarding championship belts across the 17 weight divisions in professional boxing.

They play a vital role in recognizing and crowning world champions, maintaining an environment of fair competition, and ensuring that the best fighters compete against each other.

However, each organization has distinct rules, approaches, and titles, which demonstrates the complexity and diversity of the boxing landscape.

Finally, many suspect that these major sanctioning bodies are highly political and have strong ties to lobbying from promotes and other sources.

What Is the Meaning of WBC WBA IBF WBO?

WBC (World Boxing Council): Founded in 1963, the WBC sought to create a unified regulatory system for international professional boxing fights. It has gained a reputation for being highly prestigious, overseeing numerous high-profile fights and boasting an impressive list of legendary boxing champions.

WBA (World Boxing Association): Established in 1962 as the National Boxing Association, the WBA is the oldest major sanctioning body in boxing. It has faced controversies due to corruption scandals, but it continues to be a significant player in the boxing world.

IBF (International Boxing Federation): The IBF was founded in 1983 as an international counterpart to the United States Boxing Association. Though it has experienced credibility issues, the IBF remains committed to fostering fair competition and establishing a sound regulatory framework for the sport.

WBO (World Boxing Organization): The youngest of the four major organizations, the WBO was founded in 1988 and didn’t achieve widespread recognition until 2004. Despite initial struggles, the WBO has become a respected and influential player in boxing, with its champions often holding titles in other organizations as well.

See below for further explanation of each boxing organizations

WBA – 1962 – Present

The World Boxing Association (WBA) is the oldest of the four major boxing organizations, established in 1962.

It has its roots in the National Boxing Association, which was founded in the United States in 1921. Over the years, however, the WBA has faced allegations of corruption and favoritism, which led to the formation of other organizations seeking to restore fairness in the sport.

Nevertheless, the WBA still remains a pretty influential influential force in boxing, responsible for regulating matches, ranking fighters, and awarding championship belts across various weight classes.

Some of the most famous WBA champions in history include legends like Sugar Ray Robinson, Muhammad Ali, and Mike Tyson.

How Many WBA Boxing Belts Are There?

There are four different WBA belts awarded to fighters in each weight division: Interim, Regular, Super, and Gold.

Each belt serves a distinct purpose, with different criteria and challenges associated with being awarded each title.

-Interim belts are awarded when the current champion is unable to defend their title for various reasons, such as injury or temporary inactivity. This temporary status allows a contender to claim the champion title until the regular champion returns to action.

-The Regular champion is the standard titleholder in a weight division, having won the belt through a sanctioned WBA match. However, when a champion simultaneously holds titles from other major organizations or defends the WBA title multiple times, they can be elevated to Super champion status, making the Regular title vacant for new contenders to pursue.

-Lastly, the Gold title is a recent addition to the WBA’s belt collection. Introduced in 2019, the Gold belt is awarded to select fighters who display remarkable talent but may not be ranked high enough to challenge for the Regular title. The introduction of this belt provides an opportunity for boxers to gain recognition and further advance their careers by pursuing other major titles.

WBC – 1963 – Present

The World Boxing Council (WBC), established in 1963 in Mexico City, has grown to become one of the most prestigious organizations in professional boxing.

With a rich history of sponsoring high-profile fights featuring legendary boxers like Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, and Sugar Ray Leonard, the WBC has cemented its position as a crucial player in the sport of boxing.

Its mission is to regulate, standardize, and promote boxing while prioritizing the safety, health, and fairness for all competitors.

How many WBC belts are there?

The WBC has a unique system of awarding titles to its champions. Unlike other organizations that may only confer a single championship belt for each weight division, the WBC actually has four separate classifications for its belts.

These are the WBC World Championship, the WBC Diamond Championship, the WBC Silver Championship, and the WBC Eternal Championship.

-The World Championship belt is the most recognized and sought-after title in the WBC, awarded to the champions of the 17 weight divisions.

-The Diamond Championship is an honorary title awarded to the winner of a historic fight, signifying the significance of that particular bout.

-The Silver Championship serves as a secondary belt, allowing for more opportunities for fighters to compete for a WBC title.

-Finally, the Eternal Championship is a special belt awarded to retired, undefeated fighters who have made significant contributions to the sport.

WBC Boxing Belts Explained (With Current Belt Holders)

In terms of current champions, across the 17 weight divisions, notable fighters holding WBC belts include Tyson Fury in the heavyweight class, Canelo Alvarez in the super-middleweight division, and Errol Spence Jr. in the welterweight class.

IBF – 1983 – Present

The International Boxing Federation (IBF) was established in 1983 as a response to internal disputes within the World Boxing Association (WBA).

Initially formed as the United States Boxing Association (USBA) in 1977, it gained international recognition after adopting the IBF moniker in 1983.

Known for its strict rules and transparency, the IBF has played a significant role in shaping the world of boxing and has been home to many renowned champions such as Oscar De La Hoya, Lennox Lewis, and Roy Jones Jr.

One notable achievement of the IBF is its commitment to fairness and transparency in rankings and mandatory challengers. Unlike some other organizations, the IBF rankings try to be clear and consistent, prioritizing the fighters’ skill and merit over politics or financial interests.

How Many IBF Boxing Belts Are There?

As one of the four major sanctioning organizations, the IBF awards a single championship belt for each of the 17 weight divisions in professional boxing.

In addition to the primary world championship titles, the IBF also awards several regional and youth titles within each weight class.

While these titles may not be as coveted as the world championship belts, they provide opportunities for aspiring boxers to advance their careers and progress towards the ultimate goal of becoming a world champion.

WBO – 1988 – Present

The World Boxing Organization (WBO) was established in 1988 in Puerto Rico, making it the youngest among the four major boxing governing bodies.

Initially struggling to gain widespread recognition, the WBO eventually achieved validation in 2004 when it was acknowledged by the World Boxing Council (WBC).

Although it initially faced credibility issues mainly in the United States, the WBO found early success in the lighter divisions.

The one thing that stands out for the WBO over its counterparts is its commitment to promoting young fighters, acting as a gateway for rising stars to make their mark in the boxing world.

How Many WBO Belts Are There?

There are 17 weight divisions in professional boxing, and the WBO awards one main championship belt in each division.

However, the organization also has a growing number of regional and secondary belts. While the major championship belts are the most coveted, the regional titles can be stepping stones for up-and-coming fighters looking to make a name for themselves on the world stage.

Some of these secondary belts include the WBO Intercontinental, WBO International, and WBO Latino championships. Each of these titles is designed to showcase and promote talented fighters within specific regions, helping them move up the WBO rankings and potentially earn a shot at the major championship belts.

Side note: The WBO also offers youth and NABO (North American Boxing Organization) titles, which can serve as career-boosting opportunities for fighters who demonstrate impressive skills in their respective divisions.

WBO Boxing Belts Explained (With Current Belt Holders)

At present, notable WBO titleholders include Terence Crawford (Welterweight), Demetrius Andrade (Middleweight), and Anthony Joshua (Heavyweight). Holding a WBO championship title is a significant accomplishment that leads to increased opportunities, promotional deals, and heightened prestige in the world of boxing.

What Is the IBO?

The International Boxing Organization (IBO) is a smaller, lesser-known boxing sanctioning body compared to the four major organizations (WBA, WBC, IBF, and WBO). Established in 1988, the IBO initially struggled to gain recognition in the boxing world as you would expect.

Unlike other organizations, the IBO uses a unique computerized ranking system that evaluates a fighter’s achievements based on factors like the quality of opponents, recent wins, and activity level. This method aims to eliminate any possible biases in the rankings.

Who Are the IBO Boxing Belt Holders

IBO titles have been held by prominent fighters such as Floyd Mayweather Jr., Wladimir Klitschko, and Gennady Golovkin.

Is IBO a major title?

There has been much debate as to whether the IBO should be considered a major title in boxing. The primary reason for the controversy is that the IBO is a lesser-established organization compared to the four primary sanctioning bodies (WBA, WBC, IBF, and WBO).

While some boxing enthusiasts argue for the IBO’s inclusion as a major title, many others still view it as a secondary or minor organization. However, we can get behind their goal of working toward a better ranking system for boxers that tries to avoid impartial evaluations.

What Are the Boxing Belts in Order of Prestige?

If we were considering the general perception among fans and experts:

the World Boxing Council (WBC) belt is often considered the most prestigious, followed by the World Boxing Association (WBA), International Boxing Federation (IBF), and World Boxing Organization (WBO).

So they would be ranked:

  • World Boxing Council (WBC)
  • World Boxing Association (WBA)
  • International Boxing Federation (IBF)
  • World Boxing Organization (WBO)

One reason for the WBC’s prominence is that it has organized several high-profile fights featuring legendary boxers such as Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, and Sugar Ray Leonard, to name a few. Besides, its green belt made of gold, silver, and jade, makes its just visually distinctive and further contributes to its allure.

History and Timeline of Boxing Organizations (And Why There Are 4 Boxing Organizations)

The origin of these governing bodies can be traced back to 1921 with the establishment of the National Boxing Association (NBA), which is now the World Boxing Association (WBA). As dissatisfaction grew with the WBA’s alleged corruption and unfair practices, the World Boxing Council (WBC) was established in 1963.

Over the next few decades, two other major organizations emerged: the International Boxing Federation (IBF) was established in 1983, and the World Boxing Organization (WBO) was founded in 1988.

The formation of these four organizations was driven by different motives, ranging from

  • dissatisfaction with existing bodies
  • the desire for greater international recognition

Despite operating independently, these organizations often collaborate to improve officiating standards, enforce regulations, and ensure the fair treatment of their respective champions.

The Functions and Roles of Boxing Sanctioning Bodies

These organizations engage in numerous activities:

  • including arranging title fights
  • establishing mandatory challengers for champions
  • ensuring fair competition

Each organization has its own unique process for managing its champions and title holders, resulting in a constantly evolving landscape within the boxing world.

One crucial aspect of sanctioning bodies’ functions is the imposition of penalties on champions who fail to meet their obligations. This may include stripping belts from fighters who dodge mandatory challengers.

The sanctioning bodies also work together in organizing unification bouts between champions of different organizations, which significantly raises the stakes and further tests the skills of the fighters involved.

How Do These Sanction Bodies Work with Boxers

When a boxer turns professional, they typically start with easier fights, gradually progressing to more challenging opponents.

After around 15-20 fights, the promoter decides which title to pursue, usually considering the easiest path and the best relationship with the sanctioning body.

Some promoters often focus on a specific organization, establishing a robust business relationship that facilitates the journey to the title for their boxers.

The essential element in securing a title shot is the boxer’s ability to draw fans, both to the venue and to television broadcasts. The boxer’s fighting capability is important, but with a skilled promoter, it’s possible to steer clear of the most dangerous opponents.

We get it – even though this might sound cynical, there are still exceptional fighters and thrilling fights. The importance of understanding the boxing landscape is critical since the advertising of a “World Title Fight” alone doesn’t guarantee quality.

Many boxing fans disregard the titles and rankings of various boxing organizations, focusing more on the boxer’s performance and reputation. A common adage among fans is, “The title doesn’t make the man, the man makes the title.”

How Do Boxing Sanctioning Bodies Make Money?

Simply put, boxing commissions exist to legalize fights.

Sanctioning bodies provide structure to the sport of boxing by establishing rankings and title belts, thereby dictating the legitimacy of matches and their outcomes.

Meanwhile, promoters are responsible for organizing the event. They handle venue negotiations, scheduling, safety measures, and general organization, all while generating revenue and ensuring the event’s accessibility and success.

Info to be Aware of about Belt Holders and Boxing Federations:

Lineal champion

The concept of a lineal champion in boxing stems from the idea of a continuous lineage of titleholders, tracing back to the origins of the sport.

Lineal champion is a boxer who defeats the previous champion

It is awarded to the boxer who, quite literally, becomes “the man who beat the man.” In other words, when a fighter defeats the previous lineal champion, they take on the title and continue the champion’s legacy.

The lineage of lineal champions can sometimes become murky due to retirements, lengthy absences from the sport, or controversies surrounding specific fights.

In such cases, boxing historians and organizations rely on reviewing past fights and records to determine the rightful holder of the lineal title.

Side note: The lineal championship transcends all boxing organizations and is not affiliated with any specific sanctioning body, making it an impartial and universally recognized title.

Unified champion

A unified champion in boxing is a fighter who holds two or more major titles from the different sanctioning bodies, such as the WBA, WBC, IBF, and WBO, simultaneously.

Achieving unified champion status is a testament to a boxer’s prowess and dominance in their respective weight division, as it demonstrates their ability to defeat multiple top-ranked opponents from different organizations.

Maintaining unified champion status can be very challenging, as fighters must contend with multiple mandatory challengers from each organization and navigate the complexities of boxing politics.

Undisputed Champion

An Undisputed Champion in boxing refers to a fighter who holds all the major championship belts recognized in a particular weight division. These are the rare, best of the best fighters.

These belts are generally awarded by the four main governing bodies of boxing that we’ve been discussing in this post( the World Boxing Association (WBA), the World Boxing Council (WBC), the International Boxing Federation (IBF), and the World Boxing Organization (WBO)).

Historically, only a few boxers have managed to become Undisputed Champions in their respective weight divisions. Greats like Bernard Hopkins (middleweight), Terence Crawford (super lightweight), and Oleksandr Usyk (cruiserweight) have all held this prestigious title.

What Is a Mandatory Challenger?

A Mandatory Challenger is a boxer deemed by a particular sanctioning organization as the next in line to fight for their world title. The purpose of a Mandatory Challenger is to ensure that the reigning champion faces the toughest and most deserving contenders within their weight class.

Every major boxing organization (WBA, WBC, IBF, and WBO) has a system of ranking boxers within each weight division. The ranking system is updated based on fighters’ performance, activity, and the quality of their opponents. Each organization has its unique methodology for determining rankings and identifying mandatory challengers.

Once a Mandatory Challenger is assigned, the reigning champion must agree to fight the challenger within a specified period, or they face the possibility of having their title stripped. As you can imagine, this can cause problems when a boxer holds titles from multiple organizations at once.

How Do Mandatory Boxing Championship Rules Work?

Each major sanctioning organization (WBA, WBC, IBF, and WBO) has its own set of mandatory rules, which push champions to take on the top challengers within their weight divisions.

To determine the mandatory challenger, sanctioning organizations compile their rankings based on fighters’ performances, records, and the outcome of their bouts. The ranking is crucial, as it identifies the contender designated to challenge for a given title. Once designated a mandatory challenger, a boxer is legally entitled to face the reigning champion, usually within a specific time frame.

Failure to comply with mandatory championship rules can lead to significant consequences for the champion. For instance, if a champion refuses to fight their mandatory challenger, they risk being stripped of their title. In some cases, this may result in further penalties or fines.

For Example: This situation was evident when Gennady Golovkin was stripped of his IBF middleweight title after failing to agree to a mandatory title defense against Sergiy Derevyanchenko.

How Often Does a Belt Holder Have to Defend their Title? (Title Defense Frequency)

Generally, a belt holder is expected to defend their title within a given time period, often ranging from six months to a year. This time frame may vary depending on specific rules and regulations established by each sanctioning body (WBA, WBC, IBF, WBO).

For example, the WBC mandates that champions must defend their title within a year, or they risk being stripped of their belt. However, there can be exceptions and extensions granted in cases of injury, illness, or other valid reasons.

What Are Boxing Boards?

Boxing boards, also referred to as boxing commissions or boxing associations, are regulatory authorities responsible for ensuring the fair and safe administration of professional boxing matches within their respective jurisdictions. They establish regulations, oversee licensing, and enforce adherence to protocols in areas such as equipment specifications, medical requirements, safety measures, and awarding of titles, among others.

National boxing boards, such as the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBoC) in the UK or the New York State Athletic Commission (NYSAC) in the US, set forth regulations and grant licenses for professional fighters, trainers, and referees.

These boards play an essential role in maintaining boxing’s integrity and protecting fighters by minimizing the risks associated with the sport. They also have the power to discipline those who violate their rules, including suspending or revoking licenses, or imposing financial penalties.

On a global scale, the Association of Boxing Commissions (ABC) acts as an umbrella organization for various commissions to promote cooperation and uniformity in boxing regulations.

Negotiation Period in Boxing

During this time frame, the representatives from both the champion’s and challenger’s camps engage in discussions to outline the specifics of the fight.

These negotiations cover essential aspects like

  • fight purse splits
  • venue selection
  • broadcast rights

In the event that the parties fail to reach a mutual agreement during the negotiation period, the boxing sanctioning body may order a purse bid.

A purse bid is a process where multiple promoters submit their offers to organize and promote the fight.

The highest bidder ultimately gains the right to stage the bout, with the champion and challenger sharing the purse according to a predetermined split ratio. For example, the WBC heavyweight purse split is typically 70% for the champion and 30% for the mandatory challenger.

The negotiation period can be heavily influenced by factors such as public interest, respective fighter reputations, and promotional tactics.

Example: A prime example of this is the much-anticipated bout between heavyweight champions Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua. Despite the public’s eagerness for this unification fight, negotiations for their undisputed title clash have been drawn out over a considerable period.

Weight limit

Boxers are categorized into 17 weight classes, ranging from minimumweight at 105 pounds (48 kg) to heavyweight, which is 200 pounds (91 kg) and above.

Each weight class has specific limits that boxers must adhere to in order to compete. It is common for boxers to adjust their weight through dieting, fluid intake, and exercise in preparation for a fight.

A fighter who fails to make weight for a bout may face several consequences, including being stripped of titles, fined, or ruled ineligible to compete.

Alternatively, fighters who successfully move between weight classes throughout their career(called “weight migration”) can increase their chances of winning titles in multiple divisions. One notable example is Manny Pacquiao, an eight-division world champion.

If you follow any famous, legendary fighters you’ll likely notice that fighters moving to different weight classes has become more and more common in the recent decades

Ring officials

In professional boxing, there are several key ring officials responsible for ensuring that fights are conducted fairly and safely.

These essential figures include

  • the referee
  • the judges
  • the timekeeper
  • the ringside doctor

*The referee is perhaps the most visible and influential of the ring officials, guiding the action during the fight and making critical decisions in real-time. Referees are responsible for enforcing the rules, maintaining the fighters’ safety, and intervening in various situations, such as separating clinching boxers or calling for a time-out in cases of fouls or injuries.

*The judges’ primary role is to score the fight objectively and determine the winner. There are usually three judges present at ringside who use a 10-point must system to award points to the fighters based on their performance in each round. Their combined scores are tallied at the end of the bout to declare the overall victor.

*The timekeeper is responsible for tracking round times and ensuring that the fight progresses at an appropriate pace. They signal the start and end of each round with a bell, and work alongside the referee and judges to ensure the fight adheres to the scheduled number of rounds.

*Finally, the ringside doctor plays an essential role in the fighters’ safety, regularly monitoring their physical condition throughout the bout. They have the authority to stop a fight if they believe a fighter is in danger or cannot continue due to injury, ultimately prioritizing the health and well-being of the athletes.

Major Boxing Belts and Organizations – Final Word

There are four total, recognized boxing organizations:

  1. World Boxing Association (WBA)
  2. World Boxing Council (WBC)
  3. International Boxing Federation (IBF)
  4. World Boxing Organization (WBO)

They present belts and titles to fighters in each division. Since there are 4 recognized boxing organizations and 17 weight classes, there are a total of 68 belts in boxing. With belts/titles from the WBC, generally, considered the most prestigious.

However, there are more recognized titles that you should be aware of such as lineal champion (fighter who beat the champion), unified champion (fighter who holds belts from more than 1 boxing organization), and undisputed champion (fighter who holds belts from all four organizations).

Some examples of undisputed champions are:

  • Bernard Hopkins (Middle)
  • Terence Crawford (Super Lightweight)
  • Oleksandr Usyk (Cruiserweight)
  • Josh Taylor (Super Lightweight)
  • Canelo Alvarez (Super Middleweight)

While boxing organizations are supposed to organize fights, determine rank of fighter, and work closely with promoters, they may not always be the best option for determining a fighter’s rank – plus some people believe some of their rankings are largely political.

I hope this post has provided you with a basic rundown of the major belts and boxing organizations as well as answered some related questions.

Thanks for sticking around – Zack

Frequently Asked Questions on Boxing Belts

How Many Boxing World Title Belts Are There?

In the intricate world of boxing, numerous belts and titles are often awarded, making it challenging to discern the exact number at any given time. This is because the sport encompasses various sanctioning bodies, each with its distinct world title belt across 17 weight classes. The four most recognized organizations in boxing are the World Boxing Association (WBA), World Boxing Council (WBC), International Boxing Federation (IBF), and World Boxing Organization (WBO).

Given this structure, it’s essential to understand that each organization typically awards multiple belts within each weight class, which may result in approximately 68 world title belts.

How Many World Heavyweight Belts Are There in Boxing?

The number of world heavyweight belts awarded largely depends on which specific commissions or governing bodies recognize the organizations. Each major organization (WBC, WBA, IBF, and WBO) can award up to four belts within the heavyweight division, leading to a potential total of four belts concurrently.

Which Boxing Belt Is the Best?

Among the major organizations, the World Boxing Council (WBC) is widely regarded as the most prestigious.

Boasting a long and storied history, the WBC has been involved in numerous high-profile fights and has been held by legendary boxers such as Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Sugar Ray Leonard, Floyd Mayweather, and Joe Calzaghe.

What Is the Highest Title in Boxing?

The highest title in boxing is the Undisputed Champion, a prestigious title awarded to a fighter who simultaneously holds all four major championship belts from the WBA, WBC, IBF, and WBO organizations.

This achievement is quite rare, as it requires a boxer to navigate through the complex landscape of the sport’s politics and compete against the best of the best in their weight class. Attaining this status signifies a fighter’s dominance in their division and often elevates their legacy as an all-time great.

One example of a recent undisputed champion is Oleksandr Usyk, who in 2018 became the undisputed cruiserweight champion by winning all four major belts.

Side note: Besides the major championship belts, boxing also recognizes the Lineal Champion title. This title is not tied to any specific organization but instead acknowledges the fighter who defeats the reigning lineal champion, following the adage “the man who beat the man.”

Can You Hold Belts from Multiple Boxing Organizations?

Yes, a fighter can hold belts from multiple boxing organizations simultaneously. This achievement is known as being a Unified Champion. To become a unified champion, a fighter must win two or more of the major world titles from the WBA, WBC, IBF, and WBO organizations in the same weight class.

Who Has the Most Belts in Boxing?

In the history of boxing, the fighter with the most prestigious belts across multiple weight divisions is Manny Pacquiao. He holds the unique distinction of being the only boxer to have won world titles in eight different weight classes, starting from flyweight all the way up to light middleweight.

Throughout his illustrious career, the people’s champ has faced and defeated some of the sport’s most notable fighters, such as Oscar De La Hoya, Ricky Hatton, and Floyd Mayweather Jr., among others, cementing his legacy as one of the greatest boxers of all time.

Is WBC or WBA better?

Both the WBC and WBA belts hold considerable weight in the boxing world, but many fans and fighters would argue that the WBC belt is more distinguished.

How Do the Boxing Organizations Relate to the UFC?

To put it simply the UFC is like an unregulated monopsony while boxing is a competitive free market.

While a fighter may be champion in UFC, they may not be ranked in other MMA fighting organizations like Bellator. This can be comparable to fighters beind ranked differently across different boxing organizations.

Finally, boxers tend to make way more money – partly related to the history of the sport but also to how it is setup as a free market.