Dueling Date: HBO, Sho Square Off 4/12

BY Michael Woods ON January 27, 2008
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Good news, fight fans. There will be a bounty of goodies to choose from on April 12th. Bad news, fight fans. You better be equipped with a TiVo if you want to catch it all in a timely fashion.

IBF light heavyweight champion Clinton Woods will defend his title against IBO titleholder and former undisputed 175-pound kingpin Antonio Tarver at the St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa, Fla., while WBC world title holder Chad Dawson will face off with former world champ Glen Johnson.

The card, promoted by Gary Shaw, kicks off at 9PM Eastern.

"Thanks to Showtime and Dennis Hobson, we have created a very special night for boxing fans and an important event for the light heavyweight division," said Shaw.  "Four world class fighters are taking the risk to reap the reward in a best against best scenario.  Dawson, Tarver, Woods and Johnson are in the fights of their lives and I'm proud to be promoting them."

“I'm thrilled that we were able to put this fight together and add it to what was already a sensational fight card April 12 on Showtime.” said Ken Hershman, Showtime's boxing chief. “These two match-ups are not only world title fights, but have significant career implications for all four fighters. I give them and their promoters a tremendous amount of credit for agreeing to take these fights. Saturday, April 12 should be a spectacular night for Showtime subscribers."

Also, over on HBO, Miguel Cotto will glove up for the first time in 2008 on April 12, against Contender alumnus Alfonso Gomez, and Kermit Cintron looks to avenge his 2005 stoppage loss to Antonio Margarito on the chief support bout in Atlantic City. The show will be televised on "free" HBO.

Woods (41-3-1, 24 KOs), of Sheffield, England, will be making the fifth defense of the crown he won with a fifth-round TKO over Rico Hoye on March 4, 2005. It will be Woods' second start in the United States and his Showtime debut; Tarver (26-4, 19 KOs), of Tampa, will be appearing on Showtime for a third consecutive time. A southpaw who owns two victories over Roy Jones Jr., registered a fourth-round TKO over Danny Santiago on Dec. 1, 2007, on Showtime.

Dawson (25-0, 17 KOs), of New Haven, Conn., - a ShoBox alum - will be defending his WBC belt for a third time since winning it on Feb. 3, 2007.  In his last outing, he registered a fourth-round TKO over Epifanio Mendoza on Sept. 29, 2007.

Johnson (47-11-2, 37 KOs), of Miami, by way of Jamaica, is seeking his fourth consecutive victory. The former IBF light heavyweight champ has fought the best in his division throughout his career including title defense victories over Jones Jr. and Tarver.

I cannot recall the last time dueling doubleheaders of this quality were offered on the same evening. As always, in such a case, I finish with the most logical sign off: thank God for TiVo.

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