Is Ike Quartey afraid of Kassim Ouma?

Has Ike been having nightmares about Kassim the Dream?

Quartey was scheduled to meet Vernon Forrest on an April 15th HBO date, but Forrest pulled out with an injury. Ouma, the former IBF junior-middleweight champion, quickly volunteered to sub for Forrest when the opportunity came up at Saturday’s  Shane Mosely-Fernando Vargas fight.

“Once I knew Vernon was out, I went right up to the HBO people and Lou DiBella (Quartey’s promoter) and told them, please make the fight with me and Quartey,” Ouma said. “Me versus Quartey is a great fight for boxing fans. That’s the kinda fight HBO After Dark should be about. All action bombs away. Old versus the new. I know Quartey is a bomber.

“But I heard that Ike was missing the ammunition for his Bazooka. So he doesn’t want to fight me. Ike, don’t be afraid. You’re a warrior. Don’t run away. Step up to the challenge and prove yourself against the best. I’m sure your pay day won’t change so there can’t be any excuse.”

It appears the other leading candidate to replace Forrest is Roman Karmazin, who dethroned Ouma last July but has a mandatory title defense against 37-year-old Rodney Jones due now. In order to be allowed to fight Quartey in a voluntary title defense when his mandatory obligation is already due, Karmazin must apply for an exception to the IBF rules.

“There is no way that Karmazin has any right to an exception. He has done nothing with the title. He hasn’t fought once in seven months since the Ouma fight and now that his mandatory is due, he wants to suddenly fight someone else.” Ouma’s co-manager Tom Moran said. “When we fought our mandatory challenger Karmazin last summer, we were honoring our mandatory commitment even though Karmazin brought nothing to the table, and our promoter Golden Boy-Peltz and us lost money in fighting Karmazin. Now Karmazin and his promoter Don King think they can bypass the rules when they see fit.

“If Karmazin wanted a voluntary defense then why not fight Ouma? But we are not giving Don King options. Why would we? Why is Don King so worried about options?  Kassim isn’t about excuses. He lost to Karmazin that night, but it will never happen again. We are confident that Kassim knocks out Karmazin the next time they fight. First though,  Karmazin needs to fight his mandatory like the rules say. Then Karmazin can fight the winner of Quartey and Ouma. That’s what is good for boxing, good for the fan, good for the business of boxing, following the rules. If you’re going to have real championships you have to have real rules and follow them.”