Advertisement
Advertisement

Adonis Stevenson-Tavoris Cloud: Pre-Fight Report Card

By Cliff Rold

Matchmaking need not be magic. 

Sometimes, it’s pretty basic.

Take one pressuring, heavy-handed fighter with a good beard and mix with a genuine one-punch nuclear weapon whose chin remains a question mark.  Shake.  Stir.

Explode.

Two weeks after a great show, fight fans have a potentially great main event on Saturday night.  And in one of those funny boxing oddities, one fight after losing a belt in the class, the challenger has a chance to become history’s Light Heavyweight king. 

Let’s go the report cards.

The Ledgers

Adonis Stevenson
Age:
36
Title/Previous Titles: Lineal World/TBRB/Ring/WBC Light Heavyweight (2012-Present, 1st Attempted Defense)
Height: 5’11
Weight: 173.8 lbs.
Average Weight – Last Five Fights: 169.4 lbs.
Hails from: Longueuil, Quebec, Canada (Born in Haiti)
Record: 21-1, 18 KO, 1 KOBY
Record in Major Title Fights: 1-0, 1 KO
Current/Former World Champions/Titlists Faced: 1 (Chad Dawson KO1)

Vs.

Tavoris Cloud
Age:
31
Title: None
Previous Titles: IBF Light Heavyweight (2009-12, 4 Defenses)
Height: 5’10
Weight: 174.6 lbs.
Average Weight – Last Five Fights: 174.65 lbs.
Hails from: Tallahassee, Florida
Record: 24-1, 19 KO
Rankings: #3 (Ring), #4 (ESPN), #5 (Boxing Scene), #6 (TBRB, BoxRec)
Record in Major Title Fights: 5-1, 1 KO
Current/Former World Champions/Titlists Faced: 5 (Julio Gonzalez TKO10; Clinton Woods UD12; Glen Johnson UD12; Gabriel Campillo SD12, Bernard Hopkins L12)

Grades
Pre-Fight: Speed – Stevenson B+; Cloud B
Pre-Fight: Power – Stevenson A; Cloud B+
Pre-Fight: Defense – Stevenson C+; Cloud C
Pre-Fight: Intangibles – Stevenson B; Cloud B

Cloud comes into this fight knowing his back is against the wall.  How will the Hopkins loss affect him?  Does he dig deep and go for broke?  Or has a career mired in inactivity over the years already passed him by?

We know, at the least, that he doesn’t have the same style issues he had against Hopkins.  Stevenson is there to punch.  He does it as well as anyone in boxing.  Stevenson appears to have the sort of pop you only see every once in a while; Earnie Shavers or Julian Jackson kind of pop.

And his pop carries.  The Dawson win that gave Stevenson the Light Heavyweight crown came in the first.  He’s also scored knockouts in the 6th, 9th, and 12th in his career.  He’s dangerous all night.  He may be vulnerable all night too.  That’s part of the fun.

While he has rebounded well, Stevenson was stopped in two by journeyman Darnell Boone in 2010.  Cloud has at least enough power to turn the same trick.  He had Gabriel Campillo down early and started his career with a slew of knockouts over subpar competition.

What Cloud’s done since moving up in competition against Julio Gonzalez says it’s not the same kind of power as Stevenson.  Cloud is heavy handed, with a puncher’s mentality, but he’s had to dish out an accumulation of punishment to scores stops.  Glen Johnson and Clinton Woods both took him the route, though he rocked Johnson as good as anyone has in recent recall. 

If Stevenson gives Cloud angles, he can make it hard to the shorter man, by about an inch, to get inside.  Cloud is best just coming forward.  Stevenson will have chances to walk him into shots off his long jab.  And Stevenson can deliver those shots suddenly; he has deceptive, explosive speed. 

What the champion doesn’t have is Cloud’s experience.  Cloud has seen a range of tested veterans at the world-class level even given his sporadic ring appearances.  Stevenson has Dawson and a lot of the fringe.  The Dawson fight was so sudden we never got a chance to see what happens when Stevenson gets drug into a scrap with a real world-class guy.  Cloud has never shown a bad chin and forces everyone to work.

And what of size?  Stevenson certainly fills out at Light Heavyweight, but he spent most of his career at Super Middleweight.  He hasn’t faced an aggressive, career Light Heavyweight like Cloud yet.  If Cloud finds success getting inside, who will be the stronger man?      

It could be what decides the fight.

The Pick

This is a fascinating match.  Cloud has looked befuddled his last two outings, but both came against masterful boxers.  So he can be outboxed; no one has outfought Cloud yet.  His chin has always been good and Stevenson will test it again.  He’s got the power to test it in on a whole new level.  But Cloud will test Stevenson's chin as well and it’s been dented before.  The Dawson win was great but he's got a different man to deal with here, and one with much to prove. Cloud's shorter shots and infighting will be a match for the crackling power of Stevenson.  It’s a classic puncher's duel and with suspense before the opening bell and more to come.  Experience is hard to ignore.  While Cloud hasn’t seen something like the power of Stevenson, he’s seen a wider range of styles.  He’ll have more answers as the fight heats up.  When the suspense is finally broken, the pick here is Cloud getting inside and wearing Stevenson down over time, winning by knockout any time after the eighth round.   

Report Card Picks 2013: 36-21

Cliff Rold is the Managing Editor of BoxingScene, a founding member of the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, and a member the Yahoo Pound for Pound voting panel, and the Boxing Writers Association of America.  He can be reached at [email protected]

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by dan_cov on 09-29-2013

[QUOTE=reflex+speed=me;13790082]you couldnt possibly believe this'll happen? or do you? will rebump later[/QUOTE] No lol that is what Cloud said on his Twitter.

Comment by crold1 on 09-28-2013

[QUOTE=El Angel;13791775]Should be a war, thinking Adonis stronger punch and faster hands beat Cloud in around 8.[/QUOTE] What he said

Comment by El Angel on 09-28-2013

[QUOTE=El Angel;13791775]Should be a war, thinking Adonis stronger punch and faster hands beat Cloud in around 8.[/QUOTE] Missed it by a round... :lol1:

Comment by RawDawgHasSpokn on 09-28-2013

Cloud Whack

Comment by torosboxing75 on 09-28-2013

[QUOTE=crold1;13790079]I'm close to the only guy in the press picking him. It was like 18-1 among the guys Ring asked for picks. LOL[/QUOTE] Much respect to you for going with your gut and not being a follower but Stevenson's scoring…

Post a Comment/View More User Comments (16)
Top Headlines Dela Torre Injures Right Hand, Admits Improvement is Needed Photos: Orlando Salido Closes Camp For Francisco Vargas War Mosley-Avanesyan: Winner To Receive WBA Title Shot? Parker's Promoter Vows: We'll KO Joshua, Haye, Chisora, Fury! Kauffman Rips Wilder: Took The Easy Way Out, I Beat Arreola's Ass! Jarrell Miller Demolishes Nick Guivas, Dela Torre Struggles in Win Photos: Shane Mosley, David Avanesyan - Face To Face at Weighin Video: Shane Mosley vs. David Avanesyan Official Weighin Photos: Rances Barthelemy Putting in Work For Mickey Bey Defense Chavez Jr. Says Training Pact With Freddie Roach is Stronger Now Donnie Nietes Very Happy With Casimero's World Title Victory Photos/Weights: Miguel Vazquez vs. Erick Bone, More Avanesyan's Coach: Mosley Has Declined, We'll Take Advantage Hearn: I Told Loeffler, Eubank Will Sign For Golovkin Right Now Teddy Atlas: McGregor Needs 5 Years of Training For Mayweather Povetkin's Promoter: WBC's Investigation Will Take a Few Months Casimero: I Can Drop Chocolatito Just Like I Dropped Ruenroeng! Video: Shane Mosley vs. Cruiserweight Dimar Ortuz - Sparring Eddie Hearn Believes Ricky Burns is Still The Same Fighter Whyte Says Chisora Punked Out, Backed Down From Challenge WBC Prez Applauds Pacquiao For Turning Back on Olympic Offer Haye vs. Gjergjaj Peaked at 2.5 Million Viewers For Channel Dave Hearn: Everton Event Will Be Great For Community WBO Purse Bid Ordered for Glowacki vs. Usyk Jarrell Miller Rips Joshua, Fury, Luis Ortiz, Parker, Andy Ruiz Too Joel Diaz: Bradley Had No Game Plan, Looked Lost and Confused Eubank Jr: Golovkin is Slow, Easy To Hit - His Power Can't Beat Me! Makabu Confident: Tony Bellew Has NOTHING Special For Me Frank Warren Slams David Haye's Recent Win, Briggs Fight Micki Nielsen Vows To Win Entire 'Super 4' Tournament Fury's Coach: Parker is a Very Serious Test For Anthony Joshua Steven Lewis Aims To Make Statement on Echo Arena Card Radmir Akhmediyev, Pablo Cruz Get Big Wins in Houston Povetkin Not Backing Down: We'll Do Everything To Get Wilder! Anthony Ogogo - Sauerland, De La Hoya Expect Big Things Tyrone Nurse Says Willie Limond Will Never Make it To Ricky Burns Arum Praises Pacquiao For Rejecting Offer To Fight in Olympics Roach Backs Canelo: Golovkin The Best, But Brings NO Money! Donnie Nietes, Raul Garcia Make Weight - Melindo is Way Over Photos: Shane Mosley, David Avanesyan Putting in Work For Battle
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement