By Hans Olson
Adonis “Superman” Stevenson’s search for an opponent in his upcoming IBF super middleweight title eliminator continues, as Andre Dirrell today decided to pass on the opportunity to fight the 18-1 Haitian-born Montrealer.
Dirrell’s uncle and trainer, Leon Lawson Jr, confirmed this to Boxing Insider Monday afternoon.
“It was just too short of a notice,” said Lawson.
“It was a fight that was impossible. It would be impossible to happen within a month’s time. It was just too short of a notice, that’s what it was. We’re willing to fight him any other time frame in an opportunity like this—for an eliminator or possibly for a belt in the future, depending on if he gets one before we do.”
This now opens the door for Chicago’s Donovan “Da Bomb” George, who was already slated to appear on the undercard of the August 11th gala, and now looks to be in the televised co-feature directly under Tavoris Cloud vs. Jean Pascal.
George was brought in as a back-up in the event that the Dirrell decided against the fight with Adonis.
Boxing Insider also spoke with Yvon Michel, Stevenson’s promoter on Monday.
Michel appears hopeful that the fight with George will get done.
“It’s not going to be Andre Dirrell, now we know that,” said the promoter.
“Donovan George has accepted the challenge, but he’s the third one to have accepted as the previous two [but they] turned it down after. But I already spoke to his promoter and we sent him a contract and I’m expecting the contract signed within 24-hours for the August 11 date. So we’ve crossed our fingers. Donovan George is a strong young fighter, but he’s also maybe the most courageous one.”
Having a deal in principle with his promoter before, I asked Michel if he felt the fight would be an easy negotiation at this point.
“I believe so,” he said.
“I believe that. We have sent him the contract for the terms we had negotiated before, and I believe he will sign it and send it back to us.”
One question that remains is if Donovan George will be able to make it over the border to fight in the province of Quebec due to his past criminal history.
“We’re already working on it,” said Michel.