A TREMENDOUS OPPORTUNITY FOR ADONIS STEVENSON, DONOVAN GEORGE ON SATURDAY, AUG. 11, LIVE ON SHOWTIME
Winner Of IBF Elimination Bout Becomes Mandatory Challenger To Champ Carl Froch; Tavoris Clouds Risks IBF Light Heavy Belt Against Ex-Champ Jean Pascal in Main Event From Bell Centre In Montreal, Canada; SHOWTIME Telecast Begins at 9 p.m. ET/PT
NEW YORK— With a shot at International Boxing Federation (IBF) champion Carl Froch on the line, hard-hitting, world-ranked super middleweights Adonis “Superman” Stevenson, (18-1, 15 KOs) of Montreal, Canada, and Chicago’s Donovan “Da Bomb’’ George (22-2-1, 19 KOs) will clash in an IBF elimination bout titled “Shock Wave In Montreal’’ on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING on Saturday, Aug. 11, live on SHOWTIME® (9 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast).
The important 12-rounder at Bell Centre in Montreal, the SHOWTIME debut for both offensive-minded sluggers, will precede what is potentially the light heavyweight division’s best matchup in years between two young fighters in their prime when undefeated Tavoris Cloud (24-0, 19 KOs), of Tallahassee, Fla., defends his IBF crown against former WBC belt-holder Jean Pascal (26-2-1, 16 KOs) of Montreal.
The 5-foot-11, 34-year-old Stevenson, is one of the most feared and avoided super middleweights in the world and one of the most dangerous punchers in the sport. He’s won his last five rounds by knockout, including a second-round TKO over Noe Gonzalez last April 20 in Montreal.
The 6-foot-tall, 27-year-old George has won two of his last three, the loss coming in his most recent outing on a close, hard-fought 10-round decision against undefeated Edwin Rodriguez on March 17 at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
Stevenson, who was born in Haiti and moved to Montreal when he was five-years-old, turned pro at the age of 29 on Sept. 30, 2006, and won his first five starts by knockout. In his 14th outing and United States debut, he lost by shocking second-round TKO to Darnell Boone on April 16, 2010, in Salisbury, Md.
But since the startling setback, Stevenson has made a major impression on the division. Two outings ago, in his debut with Hall of Fame trainer Emanuel Steward, he produced an early candidate for Knockout of the Year by registering a devastating one-punch (straight left), 99-second, first-round knockout over Jesus Gonzalez on April 8, 2011, in Montreal.
The muscular, physically strong Stevenson, who credits Steward with improving his footwork and refining his technique, is primed to continue his assault through the division.
“People know what to expect from me,’’ said Stevenson, who was nicknamed ‘Superman’ in the amateurs. “They know I’m a power puncher, and that I’m fast, I have a good defense and I have skill. I fight aggressively. Fans like that. Fans want action. They want knockouts. That’s what I give them.’’
George leaped at the opportunity to face southpaw Stevenson, the IBF’s top contender and one of Montreal’s most popular prizefighters, after several notable super middleweights, including Andre Dirrell, Mikkel Kessler, Thomas Oosthuizen, James DeGale, Kelly Pavlik and Sakio Bika either withdrew after agreeing or just flat-out declined to face a power puncher coming off a series of sensational knockouts .
“This is a monster shot I’m getting,’’ said George, who figures to come out fast. “To be able to fight on the biggest stage is great and I’m thankful to all who made it happen. I know all about fighting on the road so it doesn’t matter that we’re fighting in Montreal. There should be a great atmosphere at Bell Centre.
“I know that this has been a tough fight to make after so many passed on the fight. But I’m glad to take the challenge. Stevenson is very talented, comes to fight, and has a big punch. But I’ll be very well prepared and willing to go to war in what is the biggest fight of my career. I know it’s going to be a grueling fight and I know it’s going to come down to conditioning and basically who can take the better punch. Adonis is a big puncher, but so am I, so I think it’s going to be a very explosive fight.
“There’s no secret to how I’ll fight. I’m going to throw big punches and I’m going to try to knock him out. I’ll try to add a little boxing to my slugging — I always try to do that — but when the bell rings, I forget about it. This is a big stage, a big audience, and I want to just look great. There’s no way it can’t be a great fight.’’
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