Adonis Stevenson and the IBF have finally found their man. After whiffing their way down the ratings ladder and getting turned down by Edwin Rodriguez, Thomas Oosthuizen, James DeGale, Mikkel Kessler, Sakio Bika, Kelly Pavlik, and most recently, Andre Dirrell, the organization has signed up Don George for a super middleweight eliminator against Stevenson.
The fight will take place on the Tavoris Cloud vs Jean Pascal undercard, televised by Showtime on September 11.
George (22-2-1, 19 KO) is coming off of a pretty lopsided loss to the aforementioned Rodriguez on HBO, and frankly doesn't really deserve to be in a title eliminator, but what can you do? Plenty of more qualified names were offered the shot and turned it down. The IBF was set on putting Stevenson into an eliminator fight. They signed the highest-ranked available fighter who would accept it.
So the best you can do is just hope that George comes in and gives a good fight. He was a little flaccid against Rodriguez, I thought, and honestly, I think trying to get him to box just isn't going to do him any favors. He's a pure fighter at heart, and though that might get him beat up some nights, it's the best chance he's going to have to win fights. He's just not good enough to outbox guys. He does have some power, and when a firefight breaks out, you never know who might land the first serious bomb.
Stevenson (18-1, 15 KO) can bang himself, as he's shown in most of his wins, most notably a frightening first round KO of Jesus Gonzales in February. The 34-year-old contender is trying to get a move on with his title hopes, as he doesn't have a ton of time and is as ready as he's ever going to be. He'll be the pretty heavy favorite on August 11, and deserves to be in that role.