By Rick Reeno
The final WBC heavyweight eliminator between Chris Arreola and Bermane Stiverne (22-1-1, 20KOs) is once again hunting for a new date. Citing bronchitis, Arreola’s trainer pulled his boxer from the fight with Stiverne. The fight was scheduled to make place on March 9th as part of an HBO televised split-site edition of World Championship Boxing.
The fight has been shuffled around several times. Last September, Stiverne's promoter Don King secured the promotional rights after winning the WBC's purse bid with a whopping submission of $1.1 million.
King was planning to stage the fight on a December date in Venezuela, but he never followed through and the promotional rights fell back to the second highest bidder, Dan Goossen, who promotes Arreola and bid $550,000.
The fight was then scheduled for January 26th as the HBO co-feature to Andre Ward vs. Kelly Pavlik. But then Ward suffered a shoulder injury and the entire show was pushed back to February 23rd. However, Ward's injury was more severe than initially believed and that event was canceled. So then Arreola-Stiverne was pushed back to March 2 and then finally rescheduled to March 9.
Arreola (35-2, 30KOs) and his trainer Henry Ramirez are very frustrated with the numerous postponements. Ramirez tells BoxingScene.com that Arreola will be ready to go by mid-April, but he understands that everything depends on the available television dates.
"He contracted bronchitis. He hasn’t been feeling good. This is a pretty significant fight and I'm not going put him in when he's not 100%. This is the thing; he could be back [in the gym] as soon as two weeks, maybe even less. He hasn't been training since last Wednesday or Thursday. He may not be able to get back in there for another week and a half. Granted it would land on fight week but he would have gone into the fight two weeks without training. Mid to late April would work for us [to reschedule the fight],” Ramirez told BoxingScene.com.