Middleweight beltholder Peter Quillin could soon defend his WBO title against promotional stablemate Danny Jacobs.
The experts weigh in on 'Superman' Stevenson vs. 'Thunder' Cloud
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Boxing insiders agree that the power-puncher matchup of Adonis Stevenson-Tavoris Cloud has the potential for fireworks, but in the end they also agree (almost) on who will be left standing.
"Classic puncher's dual," says Cliff Rold of BoxingScene.com regarding Saturday's light heavyweight bout between RING and WBC champion Adonis "Superman" Stevenson and former IBF beltholder Tavoris "Thunder" Cloud that will take in Montreal and on HBO.
"This will be a very exciting fight, for how long it lasts," says Joseph Santoliquito of THE RING and CBS Sports. "This doesn't go the distance."
Stevenson (21-1, 17 knockouts) had primarily campaigned as a 168-pounder before scoring June's 76-second stoppage that dethroned RING 175-pound champion Chad Dawson in Montreal, while Cloud (24-1, 19 KOs) was derailed as IBF beltholder via unanimous decision loss to 48-year-old Bernard Hopkins in March.
The Haitian-born Canadian Stevenson turned 36 on Sept. 22 and didn't begin his boxing career until just shy of 30 years old. His longest fight lasted into the 12th round, where he stopped Donovan George after dropping him five times in October of last year.
Other than the George fight, however, Stevenson's longest bouts were a 10-round unanimous decision over David Whittom in December of 2007, a ninth-round stoppage of Aaron Pryor Jr. in December of 2011, and an eight-round unanimous decision over Marlon Hayes in August of 2007.
Cloud will be bringing a similar knockout ratio to the fight, though. During a recent interview with Anson Wainwright of RingTV.com, Cloud advised Stevenson, "Don't blink," implying he expects to take care of business quickly.
"I don’t really think he’s that good of a boxer, but he has power, and that always makes a fight exciting. Because when either fighter can punch, the fight could be over in one round, with one punch...If I have to go in there and punch with him, I'll punch with him. If I have to box, I can box. If I have to do both I can do both...I’m just going to win the fight by any means necessary," Cloud told Wainwright.
For his part, Stevenson has made it clear that he is going for the stoppage against Cloud, whom he has vowed to take out with his "Superman punch."
"I'm going for the knockout. Knockouts sell. I want to win by knockout," said Stevenson, who will be in pursuit of his ninth straight knockout victory. "In boxing, people want to see that. The knockout. It's good to go 12 rounds, but everybody wants to see a knockout. All of my fights, I want to win by knockout."
Cloud earned the IBF light heavyweight belt with a unanimous decision over Clinton Woods in August of 2009. He made four defenses before being dethroned by Hopkins. Prior to that, Cloud had trouble with skillful boxers Yusaf Mack and ex-beltholder Gabriel Campillo.
Cloud trailed on one card before stopping Mack in the eighth round, and appeared to have been roundly out-boxed by Campillo after having scored two first-round knockdowns on the way to disputed split-decision victory.
"First of all, tell me if Cloud has ever fought a pure power-puncher. He fought Yusaf Mack. He's a power-puncher? No. He fought Campillo. He's a power-puncher? No. He fights Bernard Hopkins. He's a power-puncher? No. He's a good strategist and he's a good boxer, Bernard Hopkins. But Bernard is not a power-puncher. Now he's facing a power-puncher," said Stevenson.
Cloud has acknowledged that he expecting "a dangerous fight" -- but for Stevenson.
Whatever happens, Stevenson-Cloud has the ingredients of a fan-friendly night of boxing.
RingTV.com sought the opinions of 19 boxing insiders about who wins on Saturday.
Record: 15-7 [Last pick: Mayweather UD 12 Alvarez]
Adonis Stevenson W 12 Tavoris Cloud - Matched otherwise evenly on paper, this fight comes down to confidence and power. Adonis "Superman" Stevenson is riding a wave of both after beating the man -- Chad Dawson -- who beat the old man -- Bernard Hopkins -- who beat Tavoris Cloud.
Record: 11-8 [Mayweather W 12 Alvarez]
Adonis Stevenson UD 12 Tavoris Cloud: It’s amazing how one punch can change everyone’s perception of a fighter in an eye blink. Adonis Stevenson’s crushing 76-second knockout of Chad Dawson was incredible, but if they fight 10 times, how often does he produce that result?
Record: 6-5 [Mayweather UD 12 Alvarez]
Lee Groves, RingTV.com
Record: 12-7 [Mayweather W 12 Alvarez]
Adonis Stevenson TKO 7 Tavoris Cloud: It would be a lot easier to pick Tavoris Cloud if he didn't look so horrible against Bernard Hopkins and Gabriel Campillo. Cloud is the better infighter and has a rock hard chin but getting inside against the southpaw might prove to be difficult.
Adonis Stevenson UD 12 over Tavoris Cloud: Adonis Stevenson can punch, but Tavoris Cloud has shown a reliable chin throughout his career and isn't likely to go away easily.
Record: 11-4 [Mayweather UD 12 Alvarez]
Adonis Stevenson W 12 Tavoris Cloud: Adonis Stevenson has taken the light heavyweight crown by force given his impressive display of power against former champ Chad Dawson.
Record: 9-7 [Mayweather UD 12 Alvarez]