By Luke Furman
The light heavyweight showdown between Jean Pascal and Tavoris Cloud will not take place in 2012, according to Pascal's promoter Yvon Michel. The fight was scheduled for August 11 in Montreal, but Pascal suffered a hand injury and withdrew from the contest.
Besides the issue of being unable to reschedule the fight on Showtime, other problems came up with the inability to secure a November date with the Bell Centre in Montreal, and Cloud's mandatory Karo Murat was pushing hard for his shot. Murat was demanding a written guarantee to face the winner and a non-refundable amount of money, likely as a step-aside fee.
The numerous issues made the rescheduling of the fight impossible, at least for 2012. Pascal (26-2-1, 16 KOs) will now return in the month of December in Montreal. Cloud (24-0, 19 KOs) will defend his IBF title against Murat (25-1-1, 15 KOs), likely in November.
"We wanted to make the fight in 2012, but it was too early to do it in October and it was impossible to book the Bell Centre in November with Lucian Bute fighting [on November 3] and Georges St-Pierre [fighting on November 17]. December was a possibility, but Murat felt the delay was too long and he knew that his outlandish requests were rejected. I do not blame him, he has been waiting for a while," Michel said.
"Cloud will simply meet his obligations as a champion. I believe that Cloud should not have any difficulties with Murat. If all goes well, we will keep the same agreement, with Cloud and Showtime, and make the fight in the spring [of 2013]."
Luke Furman covers boxing for bokser.org.