By Jake Donovan
Lukas Konecny already faced an uphill challenge the moment he accepted assignment versus unbeaten middleweight titlist Peter Quillin. An additional hurdle has now been put in place, with four U.S.-based officials named for his title challenge in Washington D.C. this Saturday.
Veteran referee Kenny Chevalier has been tabbed as third man for this weekend’s middleweight title fight, which serves as the televised opener of a scheduled SHOWTIME tripleheader. The three judges named for the bout are William Lerch, Michael Pernick and Steven Rados. All three judges are from the United States, with Rados (Washington D.C.) and Chevalier (Maryland) locally based.
None of the four officials have previously worked bouts involving either fighter.
Quillin (30-0, 22KO) makes the third defense of the alphabet belt he acquired in Oct. ’12, scoring six knockdowns en route in an otherwise competitive bout with Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam. The bout was part of the inaugural boxing event at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
Both successful title defenses came in his 2013 campaign, scoring stoppage wins in each but by far different means. Quillin was dominant in a 7th round stoppage of Fernando Guerrero last April, but struggled mightily prior to forcing an injury stoppage of Gabriel Rosado last October.
Konecny (50-4, 23KO), a 35-year old middleweight from the Czech Republic, has fought exclusively in Europe since turning pro in 2001. He has come up short in two previous attempts at an alphabet title, dropping decisions to Serhiy Dzinziruk in April ’08 and to Zaurbek Baysangurov in Oct. ’12, both fights taking place in the 154 lb. division.
An 8-1 underdog, Konecny enters Saturday’s title fight riding a two-fight win streak against non-descript competition.
The bout is part of a three title-fight card. Joining in supporting capacity is a welterweight title fight between unbeaten reigning titlist Shawn Porter and former two-division beltholder Paul Malignaggi. Headlining the show is a light heavyweight alphabet unification bout between Bernard Hopkins and Beibut Shumenov.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as the Records Keeper for the Transnational Boxing Ratings Board and a member of Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox