WBC to sanction Adonis Stevenson vs. Badou Jack
By Dan Amrbose: World Boxing Council president Mauricio Sulaiman will be sanctioning the fight between WBC light heavyweight champion Adonis ‘Superman’ Stevenson (29-1, 24 KOs) and former 2 division world champion Badou ‘The Ripper’ Jack (22-1-2, 13 KOs). Additionally, the WBC will also be ordering a fight between #1 WBC Eleider Alvarez (23-0, 11 KOs) and #2 WBC Oleksandr Gvozdyk (14-0, 12 KOs). This will be a mini-tournament, according to Sulaiman.
Alvarez, 33, was supposed to be fighting Stevenson, but it looks like he’s going to take another step aside to let the Stevenson-Jack fight to go ahead.
When asked if the WBC is conducting a tournament for their 175 lb. title, Sulaiman said, ”Yes, that is correct. 175 division will get active with great fights.”
It sounds good that Stevenson is finally facing some quality light heavyweights for a change. It’s been many years since Stevenson fought a good contender in Tony Bellew. That fight took place in 2013. Alvarez has been Stevenson’s mandatory for over a year now. There’s confusion about Stevenson and his mandatory challengers. Apparently, Stevenson’s mandatory took a step aside previously when he was in line to fight for the WBC title.
The winner of the Gvozdyk vs. Alvarez fight will then face the winner of the Stevenson vs. Jack fight. Gvozdyk has a good chance of beating Alvarez, but that doesn’t mean that he’s going to do well against Stevenson. Gvozdyk was knocked down by Tommy Karpency in the 1st round in their fight in July 2016. Karpency is the same fighter Stevenson destroyed in 3 rounds in September 2015. Gvozdyk also struggled to beat Isaac Chilemba last year in November. Chilemba was beating Gvozdyk at one point in the fight before Chilemba suffered an injury. Stevenson will likely be a big favorite to beat Gvozdyk if the two of them win their next fights.
A lot of boxing fans are high on Gvozdyk right now after his wins over Chilemba, Yunieski Gonzalez, Karpency and Nadjib Mohammedi. Gvozdyk has not looked nearly as impressive as Stevenson, Sergey Kovalev and Dmitry Bivol. Those guys have looked far better than Gvozdyk right now. Gvodyk is a decent fighter, but he’s faced a lot of weak opponents thus far, and the boxing fans are a little overexcited about empty wins. It’s likely that once Gvozdyk gets inside the ring with Stevenson, Jack, Bivol or possibly even Eleider Alvarez, he’ll be brought back down to earth and exposed. If Alvarez loses the fight to Gvozdyk, then he’ll have nothing to show for himself for being the mandatory challenger to Stevenson. However, if Alvarez wouldn’t take the step aside payment, he’d get his title shot against Stevenson.