Demetrius Andrade didn’t want to “waste” any more time.

The former WBO middleweight champion will turn 35 next month. If the 2008 Olympian is ever going to secure the more meaningful fights he wants, Andrade realized he would have to give up his 160-pound championship, move up to the 168-pound division and align with Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions.

Making a mandated defense of his WBO belt against interim champion Janibek Alimkhanuly simply didn’t make sense to Andrade at this point in his career. Alimkhanuly and his handlers claim Andrade avoided the southpaw from Kazakhstan, but Andrade pointed out that British underdog Denzel Bentley gave Alimkhanuly difficulty during his first defense as the WBO’s full-fledged champion, a 12-rounder Alimkhanuly won by unanimous decision November 12 in Las Vegas.

“I’ve been fighting mandatories all my life,” Andrade told “It gets sickening. Because at the end of the day, I was supposed to beat ‘em or whatever. Let’s get to the marquee names. Let’s make these fights happen that, you know, are gonna give us what we need in our life, you know?”

The Providence native hopes to finally fight Jermall Charlo if the WBC middleweight champion moves up to the super middleweight division. Houston’s Charlo (32-0, 22 KOs) hasn’t fought in 18 months, however, and doesn’t have a fight scheduled.

Andrade also would welcome a shot at the winner of the upcoming super middleweight showdown between WBC interim champion David Benavidez (26-0, 23 KOs) and former IBF champ Caleb Plant (22-1, 13 KOs).

A hopeful Andrade (31-0, 19 KOs) wants one of those two fights to materialize after he faces Demond Nicholson (26-4-1, 22 KOs) on Saturday night. Andrade will end a 13-month layoff when he encounters Nicholson on the Gervonta Davis-Hector Luis Garcia undercard at Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C.

“I’m moving up to 168,” Andrade said. “I wanna become a three-divisional world champion. Showtime has all the guys that I pretty much need to make that possible because when I was over with DAZN it was hard to get anything happening. And I believe going over here we’re gonna see what the truth is. And no more hearing about, ‘You’re over there. I’m over here.’ Now we’re all on the same playing field, so let’s see what it really is.”

Andrade’s previous six bouts were streamed by DAZN as part of his deal with Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing. The unbeaten southpaw’s fight against Nicholson, of Laurel, Maryland, will be the second of four bouts broadcast by Showtime Pay-Per-View ($74.99; 9 p.m. ET).

The 29-year-old Nicholson isn’t as formidable as Alimkhanuly (13-0, 8 KOs), but this is the path Andrade determined he had to take to eventually secure the higher-profile fights he truly wants.

“What is the reward for fighting a guy [like Alimkhanuly]? I already did that,” Andrade said. “Then, we don’t even know where this guy [Bentley] came from, London or something like that, and he goes 12 tough rounds with him. It’s just like, yo, this is what you guys want me to continue to I would like to say waste my time fighting these type of fighters, when I’m mentioning and wanting to get in there with the guys in my generation? Like Charlo, Plant, Triple-G, Canelo, Jaime Munguia. Those are the guys that’s in my generation, right there, not this Janibek guy.”

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.