Bellew, Cleverly, Joshua and Smith brothers in action on July 12th in Liverpool
By Scott Gilfoid: Cruiserweights Tony Bellew (21-2-1, 13 KO’s) and Nathan Cleverly (27-1, 13 KO’s) will be sharing the same fight card on July 12th in separate fights against still to be determined opponents at the Echo Arena in Liverpool, UK. Also on the card is heavyweight prospect Anthony Joshua facing Matt Skelton, super featherweight Stephen Smith, and super middleweights Paul Smith, Callum Smith, and Rocky Fielding in separate fights.
The idea behind having Bellew and Cleverly sharing the same card in what will likely be against over-matched opponents is to make them look good in front of the boxing public to try and create interest in their rematch later on this year in November. Both of the guys are probably going nowhere in the cruiserweight division, so this is arguably as good as it gets for them until Hearn can figure out some kind of angle for them to make a splash in the division.
I honestly don’t see any champions vulnerable enough for either of these guys to win a title off of, but if they were to wise up and move back down to 175, they might be able to wait out the aging Adonis Stevenson and Bernard Hopkins until they retire in the future. Stevenson is 36 and he’s not going to be able to fight too much longer before he starts showing signs of deterioration, and Hopkins appears to be about done as well.
Cleverly had a soft touch in his first fight at cruiserweight in defeating Shawn Corbin in 2 rounds. For his part, Bellew went life and death against Valery Brudov in his first fight at cruiserweight last March in stopping him in the 12th.
Bellew was lucky he didn’t get knocked out in that fight because the 38-year-old Brudov had him ready to be knocked out at one point in the fight, and Brudov isn’t even a factor in the cruiserweight division. It definitely wasn’t a good sign to see Bellew getting pummeled by an older fighter like Brudov.
Both Cleverly and Bellew will need to be matched carefully in order to get them to their November rematch in one piece. If Hearn makes the mistake of putting them in with guys that are just a little still alive then there’s a chance we could see them lose. Both guys are still basically light heavyweights in terms of power but are fighting in the cruiserweight division against the big boys.
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