SHOWTIME BOXING TO CLOSE OUT 2014 WITH ADONIS STEVENSON TITLE DEFENSE AGAINST TOP-10 RANKED CONTENDER DMITRY SUKHOTSKIY FRIDAY, DEC. 19 FROM PEPSI COLISEUM IN QUEBEC, CANADA
Andre Dirrell Returns To SHOWTIME®, The NetworkDebut Of Light Heavyweight Contender Artur Beterbiev & The Rematch Between Kevin Bizier & Jo Jo Dan
SHOWTIME BOXING: Special Edition Quadrupleheader Live AT 9 p.m. ET/PT
NEW YORK (Nov. 5, 2014)–-SHOWTIME Sports will close out its 2014 boxing calendar with the return of WBC and The Ring Magazine Light Heavyweight World Champion Adonis “Superman” Stevenson as he defends his title against top-10 ranked Russian challenger Dmitry “The Hunter” Sukhotskiy in the main event of a SHOWTIME BOXING: Special Edition on Friday, Dec. 19, LIVE on SHOWTIME at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
Stevenson will once again headline in his adopted home province of Quebec for his ninth consecutive fight and his fourth world title defense. The showdown will originate from Pepsi Coliseum in Quebec City and is presented by Groupe Yvon Michel (GYM) in association with Mise-O-Jeu and Videotron.
In the co-feature of the stacked quadrupleheader, former world title challenger and super middleweight contender Andre Dirrell (23-1, 16 KOs) will return to SHOWTIME for the first time since appearing in the Super Six World Boxing Classic in 2010. Dirrell will face an opponent to be announced in the super middleweight division.
Once-beaten Kevin Bizier (23-1, 16 KOs) will face the only man to defeat him, fellow welterweight contender Jo Jo Dan (33-2, 18 KOs), in a rematch of their 2013 split-decision showdown. The winner of Bizier-Dan II, a 12-round welterweight bout, will determine the mandatory challenger to IBF Welterweight World Champion Kell Brook.
In the opening bout of the telecast, undefeated light heavyweight contender and two-time Russian Olympian Artur Beterbiev (6-0, 6 KOs) will face fellow unbeaten Jeff Page Jr. (15-0, 10 KOs) in a 10-round 175-pound bout.
The 37-year-old Stevenson (24-1, 20 KOs) is coming off a hard-fought unanimous decision victory against Andrzej Fonfara in his SHOWTIME debut this past May 24 in which the champion was knocked down for just the second time in his career. Stevenson started strong, scoring two early knockdowns of his own and was cruising to an easy win until Fonfara battled back and floored the champ in the ninth round. The two went toe-to-toe from then until the final bell, with Stevenson prevailing with a convincing victory.
Stevenson, one of the most exciting and destructive fighters in boxing, had a breakout year in 2013. He won the WBC crown with a first-round knockout of Chad Dawson and then followed up that performance with two successful title defenses, against Tavoris Cloud and Tony Bellew, to close out one of the most impressive campaigns of the year.
Now, the Haitian-born slugger will face the 33-year-old Sukhotskiy (22-2, 16 KOs), a former world title challenger currently ranked No. 7 by the WBC and WBO, and No. 8 by the WBA. Sukhotskiy challenged for the WBO Light Heavyweight World Championship against then-champ Juergen Braehmer in 2009 and lost in the champ’s hometown in Germany.
Sukhotskiy, who has never been stopped, is currently riding a four-fight winning streak that features three knockouts. He’s just one fight removed from a career-best win, a fifth-round TKO of former world title challenger Eduard Gutknecht, and owns a 2011 second-round TKO over current IBF light heavyweight No. 1 contender Nadjib Mohammedi.
Ranked in the top 15 in all four sanctioning bodies (11th in the IBF), Sukhotskiy has fought in his native Russia for all but three of his professional bouts and has seven knockouts in his last nine fights.
Dirrell, of Flint, Mich., was one of boxing’s fastest-rising contenders entering the innovative Super Six tournament, which matched the top super middleweights in a round-robin tournament to determine the best in the division. Undefeated when he entered the tournament, Dirrell traveled to England in 2009 to challenge then-WBC champ Carl Froch in his hometown, losing a close, disputed 12-round split-decision.
In his next bout in the tournament, Dirrell faced then-unbeaten Arthur Abraham and was winning on all three judges’ scorecards when Abraham was disqualified in the 11th round for punching Dirrell while he was defenseless on the canvas after slipping on the wet surface. The former Olympic Bronze Medalist suffered neurological issues as a result of the punch, withdrew from the tournament and stepped away from boxing for 21 months.
The 31-year-old Dirrell, the older brother of WBC Super Middleweight World Champion Anthony Dirrell, is undefeated since his return to the ring, winning three of his four bouts by knockout. The switch-hitting southpaw has been called one of the most athletically gifted fighters of today. At this point in his career, he is looking to reassert himself as one of the top fighters in the sport.
Quebec’s Bizier, 30, a pro since 2008, was undefeated and the favored fighter heading into his first showdown with fellow contender Dan. The two battled for 12 action-packed rounds with Dan taking a split decision – 116-111, 114-1113 for Dan and 117-110 for Bizier. Dan controlled the early rounds; Bizier the later sessions of a thrilling fight.
Still a top contender at 147 pounds, Bizier has recorded consecutive knockouts in 2014 including his most recent performance, a first-round TKO of Laszlo Fazekas in Montreal this past September. Bizier is ranked No. 6 by the IBF and will get his first shot at a world title if he avenges the loss to Dan.
The 33-year-old Dan was born in Romania and has campaigned for most of his career in Canada. The only blemishes on the southpaw’s record are a pair of close, controversial decision losses to then-undefeated contender Selcuk Aydin – the first in 2010 and the second in 2011 – both in Aydin’s native Turkey.
Dan, whose full name is Ionut Dan Ion, has registered four consecutive wins since the 2011 loss to Aydin and is coming off a fifth-round TKO over Lukasz Janik on the Stevenson-Fonfara undercard in May.. A consensus top-10 fighter, Dan is currently ranked No. 2 in the IBF, No. 6 in the WBC and No. 8 in the WBA.
Beterbiev is fresh off a dominating second-round TKO of former IBF light heavyweight champ Tavoris Cloud on Sept. 27 in Montreal in which he floored the former champion four times in less than 4 minutes. An amateur standout who turned pro in June of 2013 and has campaigned exclusively in Canada, the highly regarded Beterbiev has knocked out all of his professional opponents in four rounds or less.
The 29-year-old Beterbiev, who holds two amateur victories over current WBO Light Heavyweight Champ Sergey Kovalev, is already ranked in the top-10 by the WBO (No. 10) after just six professional fights and 26 rounds of boxing.
The 24-year-old Page, of Andover, Kansas, is a former college linebacker. He turned professional in March 2013 and fought 10 times in nine months, facing limited opposition. Page has registered two consecutive knockouts and is coming off a fifth-round KO of Maxwell Taylor in October.
Tickets, ranging from $25.00 to $250.00, will go on sale next Thursday, Nov. 6, at 10:00 a.m. ET, in the branches of the Pepsi Coliseum in Quebec (418) 691-7211 or 1 (800) 900-7469, online at www.billeteck.com, at GYM (514) 383-0666 or Boxing Club Champion (514) 376-0980.