Former WBO middleweight champion Andy Lee (34-3-1, 24 KO’s) is very excited to make his triumphant return to Madison Square Garden on Saturday, March 18, as part of the undercard to the middleweight showdown between unified champion Gennady Golovkin (36-0, 33 KO’s) and mandatory challenger Daniel Jacobs (32-1, 29 KO’s).
As part of the card, Lee will face Keandre Leatherwood (19-3-1, 12 KO’s) in an eight round fight.
Lee had one of his career best victories at Madison Square Garden scoring a highlight reel knockout of John Jackson in the fifth round on June 7, 2014. Lee followed that up with a stunning sixth round stoppage of top rated contender Matt Korobov on December 13, 2014 before battling to a 12-round draw with then undefeated Peter Quillin on April 11, 2015.
In his last start, Lee lost his WBO title in a majority decision loss to Billy Joe Saunders on December 19, 2015.
Lee told SunSport: “I have been a pro for the last 11 years and the last three have been very intense, every fight was a hard one.
“I needed a rest and I enjoyed my year off. I went to friends’ weddings, family stuff, Christenings. It was a good year. I just needed to get away but if anything, it deepened my desire to come back.”
Lee, who is trained by Adam Booth, hopes the victory will lead him to a showdown with one of the top names at the weight.
“I am fresh and feeling fit. I cannot afford a loss but I am not fighting with any pressure. I have been world champion and I’ve made enough money to be comfortable. I am doing it now strictly for the love of it," Lee said.
“This fight will be the first step and after that I could easily challenge again. The top guys are GGG, Daniel Jacobs and Saunders. A win and I will be able to challenge them. I will need to be on the top of my game but I know if I box the way I can, fight at a world-class level where he’s not been before, I can win.
“Once I retire, the pubs will always be there, while I still have the desire, I don’t want to retire at 39 and say, ‘Oh I wish I would have done this or that’.”