(Main Photo credit: Suzanne Teresa/Premier Boxing Champions)
My fellow boxing fans, if you have been paying attention this week, boxing has been shaking its ill-perceived rust off and coming at you hard. Premier Boxing Champions has been feeding us a healthy dosage this week replete with an upset by Aron Martinez over Devon Alexander. Well it doesn't stop and we break down this weekend's schedule.
Friday October 16th 2015
Premier Boxing Champions: Andrzej Fonfara vs. Nathan Cleverly
Fonfara (27-3, 16 KOs) returns to action for the first time since his surprising stoppage of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and he faces former champion Nathan Cleverly (29-2, 15 KOs) in a high-stakes 175-pound bout at Chicago’s UIC Pavilion. The fight highlights a Premier Boxing Champions card on Spike TV (9 p.m. ET/PT).
Fonfara, 27, dominated Chavez on April 18 in Carson, California, eventually dropping the son of the Mexican icon in the ninth round. Chavez made it to his feet and finished the round, but threw in the towel before the start of the 10th.
Prior to beating Chavez, Fonfara earned a 10-round unanimous-decision victory over veteran Doudou Ngumbu. That fight in November marked the Chicago resident’s 13th appearance at the UIC Pavilion. He’s won all 13 of those fights, including 10 by knockout.
He enters this fight on a 17-1 run, his only setback being a 12-round unanimous-decision loss to 175-pound champ Adonis Stevenson in April 2014.
“Cleverly is a solid fighter, and it’s no fluke that he was a world champion and that he defended his belt so many times,” Fonfara said. “Our fighting styles guarantee that everyone can expect fireworks on October 16. I want this fight to be a quick stop on my way to a rematch with Adonis Stevenson.”
The 28-year-old Cleverly gained a 24-second stoppage of Tomas Man in May after losing a split decision to countryman Tony Bellew in November.
Before losing his 175-pound title to Sergey Kovalev by fourth-round knockout in August 2013, Cleverly’s résumé included victories over Bellew (a majority decision in their first matchup in October 2011), as well as title challengers Karo Murat (TKO), Tommy Karpency (unanimous decision) and Nadjib Mohammedi (unanimous decision).
From a tale-of-the-tape perspective, this is a pretty even matchup, as the 6-foot-3 Fonfara has a one-inch height advantage and a two-inch reach edge over Cleverly.
“Fonfara is a good fighter,” said Cleverly, a 28-year-old Wales native who will be fighting for the second time in the U.S. “He’s tall, has power and has moved up through the levels in his career. I am looking forward to coming over to Chicago and I am very confident that our styles will blend well for a really exciting fight.”
Seanie Monaghan vs. Donovan George
Long Beach, New York's undefeated No. 4 world-rated light heavyweight contender "Irish" Seanie Monaghan and Chicago's Donovan "Da Bomb" George. Monaghan (25-0, 16 KOs) and George (25-4-2, 22 KOs) will be battling for the vacant North American Boxing Organization (NABO) light heavyweight title
This Friday! October 16, at AVIATOR Sports and Events Center. The 10-round fight will be televised live as the main event of "The MetroPC Friday Night Knockout on truTV," beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT. The telecast will open with a 10-round welterweight rumble between undefeated contender BRAD "King" SOLOMON (25-0, 9 KOs), of Layfayette, LA and Philadelphia's Raymond "Tito" Serrano (21-2, 9 KOs).
Saturday, October 17th 2015
Premier Boxing Champions: Lamont Peterson vs. Felix Diaz, Jr.
Unbeaten Felix Diaz Jr. and former champion Lamont Peterson were in the same ring on the same night in April, winning and losing (controversially), respectively, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
Now the 31-year-old boxers are set to face each other October 17 in a 144-pound catchweight bout at EagleBank Arena in Fairfax, Virginia, not far from Peterson’s native Washington, D.C. The scheduled 12-rounder highlights a Premier Boxing Champions on NBC card (4 p.m. ET/1 p.m. PT).
A 2008 Olympic gold medalist from the Dominican Republic, Diaz (17-0, 8 KOs) scored knockdowns in the eighth and ninth rounds on his way to a unanimous-decision victory over previously once-beaten Gabriel Bracero at 142 pounds. That fight occurred on the undercard of Peterson’s 143-pound majority-decision loss to ex-titleholder Danny Garcia.
Garcia’s win (115-113 twice, 114-114) was unpopular in the eyes of many ringside observers, particularly in the Peterson camp. Nevertheless, it marked Peterson’s second loss in his last four fights, the other one being a third-round technical knockout against Lucas Matthysse in April 2013.
Sandwiched in between those defeats were Peterson’s victories over previously unbeaten Dierry Jean (12-round unanimous decision) and Edgar Santana (10th-round TKO).
“I’m very excited to be back in the ring, especially close to home in Virginia and fighting on NBC,” Peterson said. “I'm happy just to be doing what I love to do. I’ve been in the gym and I’ve stayed ready, so I’m prepared to give the fans the kind of show they deserve.”
The 5-foot-5 Diaz, who is a southpaw, understands he’s facing the most difficult challenge of his career—and not just because he’s four inches shorter than his opponent. Peterson is extremely popular in the D.C. area, where he’s earned victories over Amir Khan and Dierry Jean, and knocked out former champion Kendall Holt.
“I’m very thankful for this opportunity, and I know that Lamont Peterson will be my toughest battle so far,” Diaz said. “I am confident that at the end of the fight, I will have my hand raised.
“No disrespect to Lamont, but he has had his opportunity; now it is my time to show the world who Felix Diaz is. I can assure you that the fans will not be disappointed on October 17.”
Gennady Golovkin vs. David Lemieux
Golovkin, (33-0, 30KOs), will battle IBF Middleweight World Champion David Lemieux, (34-2, 31KOs) in a Middleweight World Championship Title Unification bout at the “Mecca of Boxing” Madison Square Garden and will be produced and distributed LIVE by HBO Pay-Per-View. Golovkin has knocked out an astounding 20 opponents in a row and will be making his 15th world championship defense. His 91% knockout percentage is the highest in the history of the middleweight division.
In the highly anticipated televised co-feature, Viloria, (36-4, 22KOs), will challenge Consensus #1 Pound-For-Pound Fighter and WBC Flyweight World Champion, Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez, (43-0, 37KOs). Viloria, a Filipino American, represented the United States in the 2000 Olympics. He has previously held world titles in the junior flyweight and flyweight divisions.
Also taking part in the media workouts and fighting off-TV on the Oct. 17th event will be top junior welterweight, hard-hitting prospect Madiyev, (5-1-0, 3KOs) of Karaganda, Kazakhstan. The 21-year-old Madiyev is trained by the renowned Abel Sanchez alongside Golovkin in Big Bear Lake, California.
Golovkin vs. Lemieux is presented by K2 Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions in association with GGG Promotions and Eye of the Tiger Management. The event will take place Saturday, October 17 from Madison Square Garden and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT. Doors will open at 7:00 p.m. ET and the first fight begins at 7:05 p.m. ET.