Adonis Stevenson is a load em up and let em fly kind of guy, a blaster who looks to seperate head from shoulders with most every shot. So it's not like he needs any extra incentive to try and drop and stop Tavoris Cloud when the two light heavyweights tangle on Sept. 28, in Montreal. But if he needed any extra impetus, it came when Cloud no-showed a Wednesday conference call to hype the bout, which will run on HBO.
Stevenson (21-1 with 18 KOs), who owns the most expectation-rising nickname in the sport, "Superman," exploded on the scene, blowing up Twitter like "Sharknado" with a KO1 win over Chad Dawson on June 8.
The 35-year-old hitter of Haitian descent was called "the purest puncher in boxing" by his promoter Yvon Michel on Wednesday, and lest you think that is just hyperbole, you might recall that the late Emanuel Steward, that esteemed sage, trained and managed Stevenson, and raved about his explosivity and athleticism.
Stevenson will likely enter the favorite, rightly or wrongly, off his Dawson effort, and the fact that Cloud (24-1 with 19 KOs) didn't overly impress in his last go, a UD12 loss to 48-year-old Bernard Hopkins in March, in Brooklyn. Stevenson on the call promised to give the fans what they crave, more of that two fisted fury. "I will win by knockout, because knockouts sell," he said, proving he listened and learned from Manny. Manny's nephew Sugar Hill now tutors Adonis, and said on the call that he can box better than people know. "He has exceptional boxing IQ," Hill said. The trainer was impressed when Adonis came to the gym Monday, after watching the Floyd Mayweather win, and employed some elements he picked up from Floyd.
On the call, the southpaw Stevenson sounded quite confident, noting that Cloud is a righty, and likely an easier out than Dawson. He didn't diss the boxer promoted by Don King, however. "I know he is going to come ready to surprise me," he said. But, he said, fans pondering whether to tune in should be aware of this fact: "All my fights I want to win by knockout."
Readers, I'd like to hear your take on this faceoff. Was the Dawson win an aberration? Will the 33-year-old Cloud bounce back from the Hopkins affair? Or is Stevenson's light going to shone that much brighter on Sept. 28?