by David P. Greisman
While there are other fights waiting in the wings for light heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson — including a bout with mandatory challenger Tony Bellew — promoter Yvon Michel says the best fight available at 175 is the one scheduled to happen next week.
Stevenson is defending his lineal championship and World Boxing Council belt against Tavoris Cloud, who was deposed of his own sanctioning body title in March in a loss to Bernard Hopkins. That was Cloud’s lone defeat, dropping his record to 24-1 with 19 knockouts.
They will fight in Montreal on Sept. 28 on HBO as part of a three-site broadcast tripleheader.
“Stevenson is the purest puncher in boxing today, and Cloud is the most dangerous contender,” Michel said on a Sept. 19 media conference call. “Their styles matched perfectly to make the most spectacular and best fight available in the division.”
Michel noted Cloud’s résumé: In the seven fights dating back to an elimination bout in 2008 with the late Julio Cesar Gonzalez, and continuing through six title fights, Cloud has fought 78 rounds. That’s almost as many rounds as Stevenson has fought in his entire career, which has seen 21 wins (18 by knockout) and 1 loss over the course of just 80 rounds.
“He has only one defeat, on points, has never been KO’d, hasn’t been knocked down,” Michel said of Cloud. “He has the experience on his side and he is at the peak of his career.
“Stevenson proved that he’s a lethal puncher when he KO’d Chad Dawson. And he wants to prove that this was not a lucky punch,” the promoter said. “He wants to show, also, that he is the real deal and the best of the talented, crowded light heavyweight division, and a superstar in the making.”