Officials at HBO are negotiating with the promoters of IBF light heavyweight titleholder Tavoris Cloud and ex-beltholder Jean Pascal for a bout that would take place on Dec. 17 at a venue to be determined, Pascal's promoter, Yvon Michel, told RingTV.com on Tuesday.
"We have had a very good discussion with [Cloud's promoter] Don King, and it went very, very well," said Michel. "We had a very good meeting with HBO's people and they are very interested in the fight. Although they cannot commit to it right now, there's is a great deal of interest and it's very promising."
Michel said that King told him he might first have Cloud (23-0, 19 knockouts) defend his title on the Oct. 15 Bernard Hopkins–Chad Dawson card on HBO pay per view, possibly as a split-site doubleheader.
Hopkins (52-5-2, 32 KOs) dethroned Pascal (26-2-1, 16 KOs) in May after having battled to a draw against him in December of last year.
Prior to facing Hopkins, Pascal defeated Dawson (30-1, 17 KOs) by an 11th-round technical decision in August of last year.
"We have planned to meet with Don King at his place in Florida next week," said Michel. "We want to try to nail down an agreement and to finalize everything, but it looks good."
IBF: MARES-AGBEKO II WINNER MUST FIGHT MALINGA
The 31-year-old Malinga (20-3-1, 12 KOs) had been the mandatory challenger for the winner of the Mares-Agbeko fight on Saturday, which ended with Mares winning a controversial unanimous decision. However, the IBF ordered Mares to face Agbeko again, ruling that the winner should've been penalized by referee Russell Mora for repeated low blows.
STIEGLITZ-KESSLER SET FOR NOV. 5
RingTV.com has also learned that Showtime is interested in the televising the fight. It could be part of a double-header with IBF super middleweight titleholder Lucian Bute's tentative defense against Glen Johnson.
Johnson (51-15-1, 35 KOs) told RingTV.com on Tuesday that he was informed by his promoter, Leon Margules, that a deal has been finalized for him to face Bute (29-0, 24 KOs) on Nov. 5, probably in Canada.
Stieglitz (40-2, 23 KOs) has won nine straight fights since he was stopped in the eighth round by Librado Andade in March of 2008. He has made four successful defenses since stopping previously unbeaten Karoly Balzsay in the 11th round in August of 2009.
Kessler (44-2, 33 KOs), a former three-time titleholder, has won two straight since Andre Ward (24-0, 13 KOs) dethroned him as WBA beltholder by 11th-round technical decision in the first round of Showtime's Super Six World Boxing Classic in November of 2009.
Kessler rebounded to take the WBC belt from England's Carl Froch (28-1, 20 KOs) in April of last year, but he then withdrew from the tournament four months later with an eye injury. He returned to the ring with a sixth-round knockout of Mehdi Bouadla in June and then turned down an offer to face Bute. Kessler defeated Andrade by a unanimous decision in 2007.
Stieglitz's other loss was by third-round knockout against Alejandro Berrio, who was stopped in 11 rounds by Bute.
LOPEZ-OLIVER TARGETED FOR OCT. 1
"We're almost ready. We're pretty close," said Rivera. "We don't want to say anything 100 percent until the contracts are all done, but we're hoping to be able to make an announcement on Thursday."
Lopez (30-1, 27 KOs) was dethroned by Orlando Salido (36-11-2, 24 KOs) of Mexico following an eighth-round knockout loss in April. A proposed fall rematch between Salido and Lopez was pushed back and will likely take place in January or February, if not the first quarter of next year.
Salido, who is coming off an 11-round knockout of Japan's Kenichi Yamaguchi last month, could take a bout either in October or November.
The 31-year-old Oliver (25-2, 8 KOs) has won four straight fights since losing by consecutive third-round knockouts to Reynaldo Lopez and Antonio Escalante, respectively, in May and October of 2008.
The Lopez-Oliver undercard is expected to include junior lightweight Roman "Rocky" Martinez (24-1-1, 15 KOs) and junior featherweight Jonathan Oquendo (21-2, 14 KOs).
Rivera is trying to bring in Thailand's Sod Loonongyangtoy for Oquendo, "so that they can fight each other for the No. 1 position in the WBO's 122-pound rankings," said Rivera. "We hope to have an opponent for Martinez at the end of this week or next week."
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com