Kessler v Froch winner to vacate IBF belt for Stevenson
IBF mandatory contender Adonis Stevenson has been promised a shot at the vacant title belt in the immediate aftermath of the Mikkel Kessler v Carl Froch unification contest on May 25th in London, GYM promoter Yvon Michel has told WBN today.
Stevenson, 35, has been patiently awaiting the outcome of current champion Froch’s next move and has now been assured that he will wait no more after the Nottingham fighter tackles the Dane for a second time at the O2 Arena.
“We have announce yesterday that Adonis Stevenson, after an agreement made between us, Froch’s team, Kessler’s team and the IBF, will fight for the vacant IBF super middleweight title between June 8 and 25th,” Michel told World Boxing News.
“The unification was a must for Froch/Kessler for British TV and for the prestige of their encounter. We also were in accord, us and Adonis, that this fight was great for the 168lb division and for boxing at large.
“Their target date was May 25th to optimize the promotion and maximize the revenues even though the IBF had ordered the fight to be done by April 27th and the winner had to confirm his intention of fighting the IBF mandatory contender next, which is Stevenson.
“We knew the winner had no real intention of fighting Stevenson for now and since the IBF does not allow an Interim title, we had to find a solution to please everybody within the IBF rules.
“We proposed to the IBF to grant the unification fight on May 25th and In return, Froch and Kessler have confirmed they will vacate the IBF title immediately after the unification title fight.
“We will be allowed by March 25th to seek the highest available contender and to put up a fight against Stevenson for the vacant title that will be held between two weeks and one month after the unification. That way we will be able to launch the promotion in April and everybody is happy!
“In the meantime, Adonis last fought in October, the TKO win ove Donovan George and since then he has always been in the gym. He has never stopped training after his fight, including in the holiday season. We have a window until March 25th to give him a fight that will lead him to the title fight with the best possible preparation.”
Stevenson is now set to meet Darnell Boone, the only fighter to record a victory over him in twenty contest after the 33 year-old stopped him in two rounds in 2010. Michel explained how his fighter had asked for the chance to overturn the result and head into a world title shot with victories over all opponents faced.
“In the fall 2009 the contract of Adonis expired with GYM after his win against Jermain MacKay,” explained Michel. “After spending time away, he then re-signed with us in 2011 after a disaster in 2010 against Boone in the USA. Since he is back with us, he has asked me one big favour – to eventually provide him the opportunity to avenge his only loss against Darnell Boone.
“Adonis has since accumulated six consecutive KO wins against opposition with a cumulated record of 130-10-1 and moved up to the mandatory position.
“The timing was never good before and since I believe he will be world champion by June, the time to redeem the loss will be gone. So we have contacted Boone, who has agreed to give a rematch to Stevenson.
“It will be held on our Series Fast and Furious on March 22nd card at the Montreal Bell Centre. Stevenson will carefully prepare for the fight and will move to Detroit next week with Javan Hill to hold his training camp.
“We all know this is a risk because if he loses the fight again, he would be out as mandatory contender, but we believe it is a calculated risk and we are in a business of perpetual risks!”
Youngstown-born Boone has won just two fights from eight since upsetting ‘Superman’ three years ago, with 20-losses now on his record and will go into the fight as a huge underdog to derail Stevenson’s hopes of claiming the world championship in the summer.