LAS VEGAS - WBA/IBA Light Heavyweight Champion Beibut Shumenov (11-1, 7 KOs), preparing for his third title defense this summer, has a special interest in Saturday night’s fight in Atlantic City between past world champions Zsolt “Firebird” Erdei and Byron “Slama from ‘Bama” Mitchell.
While history-making Shumenov dreams of unifying the light heavyweight division, he’s been unable to get any other world champions to put their title belt on the line. If none of the other world light heavyweight champions will get in the ring with Shumenov in 2011, Beibut will strongly consider a potential match-up later this year against the leading recognized non-world champion, Erdei (32-0, 17 KOs), a former two-time, two-division world titlist.
Shumenov, the 2004 Kazakhstan Olympian, has been on an unprecedented, accelerated pace since his pro debut only 3 ½ years ago. He has defeated four world champions in only 11 pro fights, including Mitchell, as well as Montell Griffin, William Joppy, and Gabriel Campillo. The 27-year-old Shumenov, fighting out of Las Vegas, captured the WBA crown January 9, 2010 in his 10th pro bout via a 12-round decision against Campillo, breaking the world light heavyweight record of 15 set by Jeff “Hit Man” Harding in 1989.
“Erdei is an undefeated, two-time world champion who I’ve been trying to fight through promoters for the past two years,” Shumenov said. “But, so far, we’ve been unable to make the fight happen. Mitchell is a two-time world champion, too. I fought (WTKO4) Byron in 2009 and since then we’ve become friends and helped each other during a couple of training camps. If Erdei should defeat Mitchell, I would love to fight Erdei on Showtime or HBO, and Mr. DiBella can contact me directly to make it happen.”
Shumenov owns and operates the Las Vegas-based, full service boxing promotional company, KZ Event Productions, along with his brother, Chingis. In addition to promoting Beibut, Team KZ also includes three undefeated, world-rated boxers: WBA International Light Heavyweight champion Gayrat Ahemedov (16-0-1, 10 KOs), WBA rated No. 2 contender; WBA FEDALATIN Welterweight king Ravshan Hudaynazarov (14-0, 12 KOs), rated No. 8 by the WBA; WBA International Super Lightweight titlist Alexandr Zhuravskiy (11-0, 8 KOs), who is ranked No. 15 by the WBA.