MONTREAL (April 18, 2012) – International Boxing Federation(“IBF”) No. 2-ranked, dangerous Adonis “Superman” Stevenson (17-1, 14 KOs), is ready to take on the top super middleweights in the world. First, though, the sensational southpaw must get past World Boxing Council (“WBC”) No. 2-ranked Noe “El Carbonero” Gonzalez (28-1, 20 KOs) in their much-anticipated unification showdown headlining this week’s ESPN Friday Night Fights, live at the famed Bell Centre in Montreal.
Stevenson-Gonzalez is the marquee match-up on a stacked card, which is another installment in the popular Fast and Furious Series, presented in Montreal by Mise-O-Jeu and Videotron.
In addition to future world title fight implications for the winner, the 12-round main evident will be contested for Stevenson’s IBF Inter-Continental, North American Boxing Organization (“NABO”) and North American Boxing Association (“NABA”) super middleweight title belts, as well as Gonzalez’ WBC Silver Championship.
“This is a big fight because my goal is to become world champion,” Stevenson y said prior to leaving his Kronk Gym training camp in Detroit. “And everybody is going to be watching this fight on ESPN. I don’t care who I fight for the world title – (Lucian) Bute, (Andre) Ward or any world champion – but first I need to beat Gonzalez. He’s a tough guy, a power puncher like me, and I’ve been sparring with some top guys to get ready for him. I will use my speed and movement.
“Manny Steward is the best trainer in the world to teach me how to be a world champion. He knows what it takes and is preparing me. He’s helped to improve my technique and I’ve improved in a lot of ways. He is the best trainer in boxing.”
Haiti-native Stevenson, fighting out of Quebec, is also ranked No. 7 by the World Boxing Association (“WBA”) and World Boxing Organization (“WBO”), and No. 9 by the World Boxing Council (“WBC”). Last February against Jesus Gonzales (27-1), Adonis registered a frightening “Superman”-like Knockout of the Year candidate in the opening round.
“I was happy with that win,” Adonis noted, “but I was scared watching his body shaking on the canvas. I didn’t want to hurt him. I’m glad that he’s okay.”
Gonzalez, a native of Uruguay now living in Argentina, is a feared puncher who has won 14 fights in a row, all but one by knockout. He captured the WBC Silver Belt in January, 2011, with a ninth-round technical knockout of Gustavo Magallanes (29-1) in Uruguay. Gonzalez is promoted by Sampson Lewkowicz (president of Sampson Boxing), who also handles Noe’s manager, World Super middleweight champion Sergio Martinez (48-2-2, 27 KOs).
“I’m going to win,” Stevenson predicted. “I’ll box to win and, if the knockout comes, that will be good. Gonzalez is fast and I know he’ll be prepared for this fight. I’m going to be ready and prove that I’m ready to fight for the world title.”
Unbeaten North American Boxing Organization (“NABO”) light heavyweight champion Eleider “Storm” Alvarez (7-0, 5 KOs) takes on upset-minded Rayco “War” Saunders (22-15-2, 9 KOs) in the eight-round ESPN FNF co-feature. Alvarez, rated No. 15 by the WBO, was a 2008 Colombian Olympian now living in Montreal.
Local favorites and rising stars fighting on the undercard include heavyweight Oscar “Kaboom” Rivas (9-0, 6 KOs), another Colombian Olympian living in Montreal, who steps-up in class to face veteran Kendrick “The Apostle” Releford (22-16-2, 10 KOs) in an eight-round bout; super featherweight Baha Laham (8-0, 3 KOs) vs. Leonis Francois (8-6, 2 KOs) in an eight-rounder, a pair of Canadian heavyweights, Eric Barrack (6-0, 5 KOs) vs. Sandy Pembroke (2-4, 1 KO), in a six-round fight; Montreal light heavyweight Schiller Hyppolite (2-0, 1 KO) vs. Martin Desjardins. All fights and fighters are subject to change.
The Officials for the Stevenson/Gonzalez Unification are:
Supervisor: Mike George, Rhode Island, USA
Referee: Michel Albert Griffin, Canada
Judges: Jack Woodburn, Canada
Claude Paquette, Canada
Richard Flaherty, Massachusetts, USA
GYM’s Fast and Furious is an innovative and unique series, featuring seats close to the action, staged at the Bell Centre. These exciting events are also available for PPV via Canal Indigo, Bell TV and Shaw TV.
Tickets, starting at $60.00, are on sale and available to purchase at the Bell Centre box office, or at GYM evenko.ca (383.0666).