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Devon Alexander to face Lee Purdy for IBF welterweight title on May 18

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Devon Alexander has a new opponent, as Lee Purdy will step in to replace Kell Brook on May 18 in Atlantic City.

Scott Heavey

Devon Alexander has an opponent for his May 18 date in Atlantic City, live on Showtime, as the IBF welterweight titlist will make his first defense against Lee Purdy, who replaces fellow Matchroom Boxing fighter Kell Brook.

Alexander-Brook was called off for a third time recently, with Brook suffering a foot injury, and Golden Boy made the decision this time to go ahead with Alexander fighting. Kevin Bizier was offered the fight, but turned it down due to the short notice. Richard Schaefer discussed inserting Shawn Porter, Vyacheslav Senchenko, or Andre Berto.

Purdy, however, is getting the chance. A 25-year-old fighter out of Colchester, Essex, in the UK, Purdy is a good action fighter who has won four straight, all by stoppage, since a 2011 decision loss to Colin Lynes, an upset that cost Purdy the British welterweight title he'd won from Craig Watson earlier in the year.

To be perfectly frank, Purdy (20-3-1, 13 KO) is merely an acceptable short notice opponent, and on paper, despite his grit, he should be outclassed by Alexander. I just have a hard time seeing him not getting picked off constantly if he does pressure, and if he doesn't, Alexander will have an even easier time with him.

But we'll see. Eddie Hearn says that Brook remains the IBF mandatory challenger, so if Purdy were to pull the upset, he'd make Purdy-Brook for the IBF title in September.