By Chris LaBate
Rising super middleweight contender Adonis Stevenson (16-1, 13KOs) will receive a huge boost on February 18th at the Bell Centre in Montreal, when hall-of-fame trainer Emanuel Steward takes charge of his corner for a very important IBF eliminator for the number two position. Adonis will face tough Jesus Gonzalez (27-0, 14Kos), who suffered his only loss in 2005 by knockout to Jose Luis Zertuche.
Stevenson has been training at Steward's Kronk Gym in Detroit. Before Stevenson arrived to his gym, Steward had never heard of the Canadian fighter, but he quickly noticed a lot of ability.
“I never heard of him. He came in almost unannounced - and you can’t come in virtually unannounced,” Steward told the Montreal Gazette. “We worked the pads. I didn’t know much about him, but I was impressed by his short, accurate punches. I never saw him fight, but he looked so seasoned and professional.
“He came to the gym and I was so amazed. Seldom have I been this impressed. Most fighters I get are off-balance and I spend time on their footwork. But his balance is unbelievably perfect. And I like his power. Everyone of his punches is short, accurate and pinpoint. His punching power is tremendous. You don’t see his punches. I like his talent and work ethic. He never stops. He’s totally obsessed with being a world champion.”