By Keith Idec
David Lemieux’s continuous troubles making 160 pounds probably cost him a shot at Canelo Alvarez.
Lemieux suffered from severe dehydration Friday morning, before he was scheduled to weigh in for a 10-round middleweight match on the Alvarez-Rocky Fielding undercard Saturday night at Madison Square Garden. Lemieux was taken to a Manhattan hospital and the Lemieux-Johnson bout was removed from what was a 10-bout card, according to a report by Sports Illustrated’s Chris Mannix, also a member of DAZN’s broadcasting team.
The bout between Montreal’s Lemieux (40-4, 34 KOs) and the Bahamas’ Johnson (20-2, 14 KOs) was scheduled as the co-featured fight that would’ve immediately preceded Alvarez versus Fielding.
The Tevin Farmer-Francisco Fonseca fight has been bumped up into the Lemieux-Johnson slot. Philadelphia’s Farmer (27-4-1, 6 KOs, 1 NC) is set to make the second defense of his IBF junior lightweight title against Costa Rica’s Fonseca (22-1-1, 16 KOs) in a 12-round, 130-pound bout.
Had Lemieux beaten Johnson, he would’ve been considered a leading candidate to fight Alvarez in a middleweight championship match May 4 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The 29-year-old Lemieux has won each of his two bouts since former WBO middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders masterfully out-boxed the ex-IBF middleweight champ last December 16 at Place Bell in Laval, Quebec, Canada.
Lemieux’s first-round knockout of Gary “Spike” O’Sullivan on the undercard of the Alvarez-Gennady Golovkin rematch September 16 at T-Mobile Arena moved Lemieux into position to challenge Alvarez. Oscar De La Hoya was in favor of matching Alvarez against Lemieux because his company promotes both boxers Lemieux, while a dangerous puncher, would’ve been an easier opponent for Alvarez than Golovkin or IBF middleweight champ Daniel Jacobs.
De La Hoya told the Los Angeles Times on Thursday that Alvarez won’t fight Golovkin a third time or Jacobs on May 4. That intensified speculation regarding an Alvarez-Lemieux match becoming Alvarez’s second appearance on DAZN – the streaming service for which the Mexican superstar will make his debut Saturday night.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.