Hard-hitting southpaw knockout artist Adonis “Superman” Stevenson and hammer-fisted Donovan “Da Bomb” George have agreed in principle to fight in an IBF super middleweight eliminator on the Aug. 11 undercard of a main event featuring IBF light heavyweight beltholder Tavoris Cloud and former RING and WBC titleholder Jean Pascal, the fighters’ handlers informed RingTV.com on Monday.
Switch-hitting contender Andre Dirrell (20-1, 14 knockouts) had been the lead candidate to face Stevenson (18-1, 15 KOs), but pulled out of contention late last week, according to IBF Championships Chairman, Lindsay Tucker.
As a result, Yvon Michel, who promotes Stevenson and Pascal, said that he has reached an agreement with Warriors’ Boxing attorney Leon Margules for Stevenson to face George (22-2-1, 19 KOs).
“Yvon Michel, because he has this Aug. 11 date, he doesn’t want to waste a lot of time negotiating, so he called for an immediate purse bid, which, under the rules, he can do,” said Tucker. “Andre Dirrell just pulled out last Thursday, and Donovan George is next, and he has accepted.”
Margules confirmed Tucker’s assertion about the clash, which is slated for the Bell Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, where Stevenson and Pascal are from.
“It’s done. We have a deal. The kid hasn’t signed the bout agreement yet, but Yvon and I have a deal,” said Margules. “We’ve got a deal, we’re just waiting for the signature to come back. As far as Don and I, and an agreement, that’s done.”
Dirrell’s uncle and trainer, Leon Lawson Jr., cited the fact that his nephew would have little time to prepare for Stevenson as his primary reason for not taking the fight.
“It’s just two short of notice, that’s what it was,” said Lawson Jr. “We would love to fight him at any other time for an eliminator or possibly for a belt in the future, depending on if he gets one before we do.”
The winner between Stevenson and George will become the mandatory England’s Carl Froch (29-2, 21 KOs), whose fifth-round knockout dethroned southpaw Lucian Bute (30-1, 24 KOs) as IBF beltholder in May.
Stevenson has scored five straight knockouts since, himself, falling by second-round stoppage to Darnell Boone in April of 2010.
George, of Chicago, is coming off a unanimous decision loss to Edwin Rodriguez (21-0, 14 KOs) in March that took place on the undercard of a main event featuring an 11th-round knockout by RING middleweight champion Sergio Martinez over Matthew Macklin.
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com