By Luke Furman
The light heavyweight showdown between Adonis Stevenson and Eleider Alvarez is officially getting pushed back to January 2018.
Their mutual promoter, Yvon Michel of GYM, has confirmed the news after discussing the matter with Showtime, who are going to televise the contest in the United States.
Alvarez has been the mandatory challenger, for nearly two years, to Stevenson's WBC light heavyweight title. Stevenson (29-1, 24 KOs) and Alvarez (23-0, 11 KOs), who are both advised by Al Haymon, were ordered to fight each other by the World Boxing Council.
Alvarez has been the mandatory challenger to Stevenson since his victory over Isaac Chilemba in November 2015 in Quebec City. The champion has not faced a mandatory challenger since he knocked out Tony Bellew in November 2013 in Quebec City. He has made six defenses of his title since.
The fight was originally planned for December 16th, but there is now a conflict with popular middleweight David Lemieux returning on the same date, in Canada, in the main event of an HBO televised card.
Michel is not looking to put local fans on the spot, with having to choose between two events going head to head in the region.
"In light of the recent events [a possible David Lemieux fight on December 16 at Bell Place], we contacted Showtime to tell them it was not a good idea to do this [the fight between Stevenson and Alvarez] at the same time," Michel said to RDS.
"It would be ridiculous to put these two events against each other. It would not serve the boxing industry or the fans. We're looking for a date in January 2018."
Meanwhile, the WBO ordered a middleweight championship bout between Billy Joe Saunders and Lemieux, which could take place on the December 16th date. If this fight did not materialize, HBO has already approved two opponents for Lemieux to fight on the date.
Luke Furman covers boxing for bokser.org.