Andre Berto's name has come up in connection to Jan Zaveck, but his promoter won't confirm -- or deny. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
BoxingScene.com's Rick Reeno reports that promoter Lou DiBella is speaking with the management for Slovenian fighter and current welterweight titleholder Jan Zaveck. DiBella will only confirm that he's speaking with them about a fight with Randall Bailey, but doesn't deny that Andre Berto's name has also come up:
"Did Berto's name come up during a conversation? Berto possibly came up, but a lot of things would have to be satisfied for something like that to happen."
Berto, of course, is coming off of an April 16 loss to Victor Ortiz on HBO, a fight that drew rave reviews but opened up a slew of new questions about the 27-year-old fighter. It was the first loss for Berto (27-1, 21 KO) and we wondered after about his stamina, his ability to recover from getting rattled, his corner, and just about everything else.
Bailey (41-7, 36 KO) isn't much of a boxer in the traditional sense, but he can flat-out punch, and at 36 I would say you could still argue he has the most powerful right hand in the sport, pound-for-pound. His last fight was a debacle against Said Ouali in December, where Bailey floored Ouali in the first round but the fight was ruled a no contest after Bailey sort of tossed Ouali in the second and Ouali pulled out with an injury. Before that, Bailey went to Belgium and stopped "Sugar" Jackson Bonsu in the first round.
As for Zaveck (31-1, 18 KO), he's one of the weaker titlists around, and his February defense against Paul Delgado was a disgraceful fight for anyone, anywhere to call "for the world championship." I actually think that he'd be ripe for the picking against Bailey's right hand, and that Berto would simply be too dynamic for him, but I'm certainly not saying Zaveck is a bad fighter. Berto has certainly been paid well to fight worse opponents in the past, and if he could avoid Bailey's right I'd favor him to win that one, too.