Adrien Broner will have an extra week to readjust to fame.
The forthcoming BLK Prime debut for the former four-division titlist will now take place on February 25 in Atlanta, one week later than the previously targeted February 18 date. As previously reported by BoxingScene.com, Broner will face Ivan Redkach in a welterweight bout atop a BLK Prime Pay-Per-View event. A reason was not given for the date change, nor was the venue specified though State Farm Arena—the home of the NBA’s Atlanta Hawks–is available.
The show will also feature a battle between former titleholders Tevin Farmer and Mickey Bey in a ten-round co-feature.
Both bouts were formally announced on December 10, hours before the Terence Crawford-David Avanesyan WBO welterweight title fight that headlined the inaugural BLK Prime PPV show from CHI Health Center in Omaha, Nebraska. All four fighters were present for the event, with Broner briefly joining the broadcast to discuss that event as well as his own.
Cincinnati’s Broner (34-4-1, 24KOs) has not fought since a twelve-round, unanimous decision win over Jovanie Santiago last February 20 in Uncasville, Connecticut. That bout was his first since a loss to Manny Pacquiao in their January 2019 secondary welterweight title fight, which sold roughly 400,000 units atop a Showtime Pay-Per-View telecast.
His upcoming bout with Redkach marks the first of a lucrative three-fight deal between Broner and BLK Prime, which was formally announced on October 25. The fight itself was previously in the works on both sides of the pandemic, once eyed for 2020 and again sought for last January. Neither date materialized, with Broner instead facing Puerto Rico’s Santiago, whom he outpointed over twelve rounds.
Interestingly, Redkach—a Ukrainian southpaw fighting out of Los Angeles—will return to Atlanta for his second straight fight. His last appearance came under dubious circumstances, losing to Regis Prograis last April 17 in what was ruled a technical decision at the time but changed to a technical knockout after a successful appeal by Prograis with the Georgia Athletic and Entertainment Commission.
The defeat was the second in a row for Redkach (23-6-1, 18KOs), who previously dropped a twelve-round, unanimous decision to former two-division titlist Danny Garcia. Their January 2020 bout—which headlined a Showtime card from Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York—saw Redkach initially get away with biting Garcia during the ninth-round of their welterweight fight, but later met with a suspension as handed down by the New York State Athletic Commission.
Redkach previously won three straight fights, including a sixth-round knockout of former two-division titlist Devon Alexander in June 2019.
Broner has won titles at junior lightweight, lightweight, welterweight and junior welterweight in that order.
Meanwhile, Famer and Bey find a new home for their oft-rescheduled clash.
The two were previously due to fight on May 21, first in Accra, Ghana and then relocated to Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The fight was then canceled due to the untimely death of UAE president Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan on May 13. A mandatory period of mourning forced the cancellation of the show.
Farmer-Bey was then rescheduled for August 12 in Prescott, Arizona. In a bizarre development, the fight was canceled hours before the show after disgraced promotional outfit Bigger Than Life Entertainment was unable to guarantee funds.
Philadelphia’s Farmer (30-5-1, 6KOs) has not fought since losing his IBF junior lightweight to Joseph ‘JoJo’ Diaz in January 2020. The unanimous decision defeat ended his 17-month title reign in which he made four successful defenses.
The inactive stretch for Bey (23-3-1, 11KOs) has been even longer. The former IBF lightweight titlist last fought in December 2019, when he dropped a ten-round, split decision to George Kambosos Jr. preceding the Aussie’s eventual lightweight title reign. The 39-year-old from Las Vegas by way of Cleveland, Ohio held the IBF 135-pound title for ten months before vacating in July 2015.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox