By Jake Donovan
Adonis Stevenson scored five knockdowns en route to a 12th round stoppage of Donovan George in their super middleweight title eliminator Friday evening in Montreal, Canada.
Both fighters brought the heat after a tentative opening round, but Stevenson proved to be too much for the visiting American fighter. Two body shot knockdowns in round five had George in serious trouble, only for the Chicago native to come roaring back to cap a Round of the Year contender.
George went for broke in the sixth round, but once again found himself on the canvas and on the verge of being stopped. Stevenson unloaded with left hands and body shots, but George did his best to remain upright for as long as his body would allow.
Two more knockdowns came in the final round. To his credit, erratic referee Marlon B. Wright gave the visiting fighter every chance to recover but finally waved off the bout after George doubled over in pain following the fifth - and final - knockdown of the evening.
The official time was 0:55 of round twelve.
Stevenson improves to 19-1-1 (16KO) with the win, his sixth straight - all coming inside the distance. George suffers his second straight loss as he falls to 23-3-1 (20KO).
The win puts Stevenson in line for a shot at the alphabet title currently in possession of Carl Froch. However, the Haiti-born southpaw - now based in Canada - shouldn't hold his breath in awaiting the opportunity to materialize anytime soon. Froch faces Yusaf Mack later this year and then has a mandatory rematch with Lucian Bute lined up for next March.
Whether Stevenson elects to keep busy in the ring or patiently wait, his future continues to look brighter with each fight. The win over George is by far the biggest of his still promising career, although his advanced age (35 years old) leaves his handlers with some serious thinking to do regarding his immediate future.
The co-feature offered a Knockout of the Year contender, as the middleweight matchup between David Lemieux and Alvaro Gaona proved to be every bit the mismatch as appeared to be the case on paper. Lemieux racked up his second straight knockout and win with a frightening first-round stoppage.
A left hook cracked Gaona hard enough to watch the journeyman fall and bounce off the canvas as he was sprawled out in center ring. The bout was immediately stopped at 2:48 of the opening round, as the referee could have counted to one hundred. Immediate attention was paid to Gaona, including genuine concern from Lemieux.
The win advances Lemieux' record to 27-2 (26KO), while Gaona falls to 11-2 (7KO). Lemieux resumes his winning ways on the fringe level after losing two straight in a deflating 2011 campaign.
Unbeaten light heavyweight contender Eleider Alvarez maintained his winning ways with a second round knockout over Daniel Regi (15-7, 7KO). Three knockdowns brought a halt to the contest at 2:20 of round two. Alvarez (10-0, 6KO) is now in line for a December showdown at this very venue against former middleweight contender Edison Miranda.
All three bouts aired live on
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter: