By Jake Donovan
Progress continues to be made in negotiations between lineal light heavyweight king Adonis Stevenson and former titlist Tavoris Cloud. The recently crowned champ has officially signed on for a September 28 title defense in Montreal.
Once made official, the bout will air on HBO.
“We are expecting signed contracts from Don King and Tavoris Cloud before we make an official announcement,” promoter Yvon Michel said Thursday.
Stevenson (20-1-1, 18KO) erupted on the championship stage, lifting the light heavyweight crown with a one-punch knockout of Chad Dawson just 76 seconds into the HBO-televised title fight this past June. The bout was his first crack at a world title, but a continuation of the upward trend his career continues to enjoy.
Eight wins have followed since the lone loss of Stevenson’s career, a shocking 2nd round stoppage at the hands of journeyman Darnell Boone back in March 2013. All eight victories since that night have come by knockout, including a six-round blitizing of Boone in their rematch this past March.
The closest any opponent has come to lasting the full twelve rounds with the Haiti-born, Canada-based southpaw was Donovan George, who fought valiantly before succumbing less than a minute into the final round.
Stevenson’s battle with George last October was dedicated to his trainer Emanuel Steward, whose health was rapidly declining at the time of the fight. The Hall of Fame trainer passed away later that month, never enjoying the chance to see one of his favorite pupils win a world title.
The goal for Stevenson is to fight four times in 2013. Knockout wins over Boone and Dawson are already in the books. Also in queue for later this year is a mandatory title defense against Tony Bellew, which is tentatively slated for late November or early December.
All that awaits for September 28 is a signed contract from Cloud, who hasn’t fought since losing a light heavyweight belt to Bernard Hopkins earlier this year.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox