Cunningham: Lubin “one of the elite guys” at 154

Erickson “Hammer” Lubin's trainer Kevin Cunningham says his fighter is looking to prove he belongs at the top of the junior middleweight division when he takes on Jesus Ramos (20-0, 16 KOs) on Showtime PPV in Las Vegas on September 30.

“I think that Hammer is looking at this as a fight to show that he's still one of the elite guys in the 154-pound division,” Cunningham told the Showtime Boxing Podcast. “And he's motivated to show that he's nobody’s steppingstone. And, you know, he's there to win a fight like this on a stage like this and move on to bigger and better things.”

Two fights ago, Lubin (25-2, 18 KOs) suffered only the second loss of his career when he was stopped in the ninth round of a titanic battle with Sebastian Fundora. But he rebounded in June to dominate and stop Luis “Cuba” Arias in five at the Armory in Minneapolis.

According to Cunningham, Lubin didn’t need any special encouragement or support after the Fundora loss.

“I stopped the fight because of obvious facial damage to his face,” he said. “He wanted to continue. And he was leading on all judges’ scorecards. But, you know, he's 26 years old, and with all of the swelling to his face, you don't know what's going on behind the swelling. So, I thought it was just best that that he didn't take any further damage. And he lives to fight another day, so. And he came back after a couple of months off, came back into the gym and was, you know, right back to normal. And he went to camp for the Cuba Arias fight and fought the fight. And he was the first person to ever stop Cuba Arias. And Cuba has fought some major names in the game. But he showed that, you know, he's still the same old Hammer.”

By the same token, he acknowledges Ramos’ talent and recognizes that the undefeated 22-year-old poses a major challenge.

“I think Jesus Ramos is a good, young, solid, strong fighter,” he said. “So, you know, you have to be on point you have to be focused and on point and be on top of your game. He's a guy that you have to be on top of your game to beat him, but that's the type of fight that you're gonna have at this level. Most opponents are going to be the type of guys that, if you don't come to the ring with your A game, it can be a problem. That's exactly how we look at Jesus Ramos.”