In addition to the Adonis Stevenson vs Noe Gonzalez main event from Montreal's Bell Centre, light heavyweight prospect Eleider Alvarez will also be featured on the ESPN2 broadcast of this week's Friday Night Fights.
Alvarez, nicknamed "Storm," is a Colombian fighter currently based in Montreal, another of Quebec's adopted boxers who thus far has a pro record of 7-0 (5 KO). He'll be facing veteran Rayco Saunders (22-15-2, 9 KO), a 37-year-old battler from Pittsburgh who has been stopped just once. Saunders doesn't beat the better fighters he faces, but he's solid enough to expose a novice if the kid doesn't have the goods, and it's an appropriate step-up fight. The selling point for Saunders is now that he once beat Tommy Karpency, which is now notable for press releases because Karpency got a world title shot at Nathan Cleverly in February. That just looks better and better, doesn't it?
Also on the card this Friday night will be another Colombian-Canadian, heavyweight Oscar Rivas (9-0, 5 KO). Rivas, 24, will be facing Kendrick Releford (22-16-2, 10 KO). Releford, 30, is another familiar opponent who has in the past year faced and lost to both Chris Arreola and Malik Scott. The honest truth about Releford, at least from what I can see, is that he's still a tough guy and you can count on an honest effort early, but his heart's really not in it. In the Arreola and Scott fights, he didn't seem 100% like he wanted to be there. It's the right step for Rivas in many ways, but if Releford doesn't supply a ton of resistance I don't think it will be any surprise.
Bad Left Hook will have live round-by-round coverage of Friday Night Fights this week, with the show returning to its normal 9 p.m. EDT time slot.