by David P. Greisman
A fight between junior middleweight titleholder Demetrius Andrade and mandatory challenger Brian Rose — a bout for which negotiations began in November — will probably end up on the June 14 card featuring junior welterweight titleholder Ruslan Provodnikov against. an opponent still to be named.
That’s according to Arthur Pelullo of Banner Promotions, which has both Provodnikov and Andrade in its stable.
“It’s an opportunity to get rid of the mandatory, and then we can focus on Demetrius Andrade moving up in weight or fighting better class guys,” Pelullo told BoxingScene.com on Feb. 28. “I just want to make sure we get the mandatory done, and it’s easier to get it done on a show that I’m involved with.”
Pelullo believes Andrade’s time at junior middleweight will eventually give way to a move up to middleweight.
“He’s a big kid,” Pelullo said. “He has to really work to make 154.
“He’s got super talent,” Pelullo added. “I think he’s the most talented guy out there between ‘54 and ‘60. The problem is he’s so talented, you can’t find him. He’s a very difficult guy to fight. As far as his weight’s concerned, he’s 26 [years old]. He can go to ’68 eventually in time.”
The WBO belt at 154 pounds had been vacated after then-titleholder Zaurbek Baysangurov got injured prior to a bout with Andrade. This past November, Andrade beat Vanes Martirosyan by split decision to pick up the belt.
Andrade, 25, is now 20-0 with 13 knockouts. Rose, 28, is 25-1-1 with 7 KOs and is coming off a debatable split decision win over Javier Francisco Maciel in October.
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