by Hans Olson
The rematch between Montreal’s Jo Jo Dan and the WBC’s 147 lb. Silver Champion Selcuk Aydin has been set, promoters Chris Ganescu (Jo Jo Dan) and Ahmet Oener (Aydin) reaching a deal in principle on Thursday. The fight will be staged in Aydin’s home country of Turkey, the site of the controversial first meeting between Jo Jo and Selcuk. “We took a look at economics; they turned down a very competitive offer to fight outside of Turkey, so it did not make sense to increase it,” said Ganescu. “It would have meant lowering Jo Jo’s share, so we decided it makes more sense to accept their offer. I believe Jo Jo will KO him this time no matter where we fight!”
Jo Jo has won 3 in a row since the first Aydin fight, beating the likes of Andrews Pablo Villafane, former “Contender” star Steve Forbes, and most recently Iwan Azore in July for the WBC’s Caribbean title in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad.
“Jo Jo is so improved compared to last year, plus I believe the pressure is on Aydin,” continued Ganescu. “Jo Jo beat him first time…Aydin has something to prove in front of his fans who he disappointed last time!”
Selcuk Aydin for his part, is a very talented fighter boasting a record of 22-0, winning
by knockout in his last two fights since the disputed victory over Jo Jo Dan. He is largely unknown to North American audiences, but is a big ticket seller in his native country.
The winner of Jo Jo Dan/Selcuk Aydin II will be the WBC’s mandatory challenger to the winner of Floyd Mayweather/Victor Ortiz on September 17.
The negotiations continue between Yvon Michel and Don King, promoters of former Light Heavyweight Champion Jean Pascal and current IBF Light Heavyweight champ Tavoris Cloud, respectively.
Yvon was gracious enough to speak with Boxing Insider earlier this week about an array of topics, notably Jean Pascal’s return.
“We have a tentative schedule for December 10 in Montreal against Cloud on HBO,” said Michel. “I have a meeting with Don King next week. We already had several telephone conversations and we went far enough that we have decided to meet next time and hopefully be able to finalize a deal.” With the onset of Lucian Bute/Glen Johnson taking place in Quebec City on Nov 5, Montreal’s Bell Centre now looms as the landing spot for the anticipated 175 lb. showdown. Yvon had previously held the date of December 17 at the Colisee Pepsi in Quebec City for Pascal. “The December 17 date changed because I don’t think it will be a good idea to have two events of this nature six weeks apart in the same city [referencing Bute/Johnson in Quebec City on Nov 5]. That’s why for December we are now targeting the Belle Centre in Montreal.”
There is of course the matter of finances. It has been reported by numerous outlets that HBO is on a tight budget for it’s final quarter of boxing programming. Some anticipate the fight not happening until January due to these scheduling and budget logistics at the network. Regardless, it’s clear to Yvon that HBO wants the fight. “They are interested. It’s a division they are investing in. It’s a fight they like very much. So what they suggested is to finish the deal with King and to come back to them, but they said definitely it’s a fight they want to show.”
In addition to the negotiations with Don King, Yvon has been busy with his company’s involvement alongside Golden Boy Promotions. “We are involved with the French Pay-Per-View for HBO and Golden Boy for their next two events—the Mayweather one September 17, and the one in Los Angeles, Hopkins/Dawson.” On the undercard to Mayweather/Ortiz, Longueuil, Quebec’s Adonis “Superman” Stevenson (14-1) will face Dion Savage (11-1) in a 10-rounder. Depending on how that fight goes, Stevenson could find himself back in action very quickly on the Hopkins/Dawson card. “We will see how Stevenson will fare against Savage,” said Yvon. “We might come back with Adonis right away or it may be Elieder Alvarez. He’s a light heavyweight from Columbia who is very talented and his manager and trainer, Marc Ramsey, wants to go fast with him. It might be him…we will make that decision after September 17.”
Finally, Groupe Yvon Michel’s “Fast and Furious” series will also return this fall. Initially penciled in for September 23, the card featuring Laval, Quebec’s Antonin Decarie has been tentatively rescheduled to October 20. “We realized that September was coming by very fast and to take our proper time to do the marketing and publicity, we realized that we needed a bit more time. We will start with October 20. Antonin Decarie (25-1) is the main event, and the co-feature will be Dierry Jean (19-0). The others (on the card) will be Oscar Rivas (3-0) and Didier Bence (2-0).”
The undercard to Lucian Bute/Glen Johnson is shaping up nicely. This past Wednesday, Interbox announced the evening’s co-feature, which will pair former IBF Super Bantamweight champ Steve Molitor with Saint-Jerome, Quebec’s Sebastien Gauthier. President of Interbox Jean Bedard stated in the announcement: “Our objective is to offer significant challenges to our boxers with the goal of presenting the best show possible to our loyal fans. The Gauthier/Molitor bout is a perfect example of our plan. I am confident both fighters will offer a great fight to the Colisee Pepsi crowd as well as those watching the fight across the globe.” Also slated to appear is the fast rising Piere Olivier Cote, who takes on an opponent to be determined soon.
Boxing Insider’s Hans Olson can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @hansolson