NOW Lamont “Havoc” Peterson Gets Title Shot?
By: Ken Hissner
Welterweight Lamont “Havoc” Peterson, 34-3-1 (17), had an outstanding amateur record with many titles won. As a professional he held the interim WBO super lightweight and the WBA & IBF super lightweight titles. He’s been looking for a welterweight title fight since his last fight that goes back to October 2015 when he defeated Gold Medal Olympian Felix Diaz, 17-0, by majority decision. It didn’t happen.
Soooooo Peterson takes off now for sixteen months and guess what? He has the opportunity on February 18th to fight for the interim WBA World Title against the champion Russian David Avanesyan, 22-1-1 (11), at the Cintras Center, in Cinn., OH.
Peterson started his career winning twenty-two straight when he faced his first real challenge and defeated Brazilian Antonio Mesquito, 34-0. It would be eighteen months at 27-0 before he got his first world title shot defeating Frenchman Willy Blain, 20-0, for the interim WBO World super lightweight title. In his next fight he fought for the WBO World title losing to Timothy Bradley, Jr., 24-0.
Two fights later Peterson fought to a draw with Victor Ortiz, 28-2-1, followed by a knockout win over Victor Manuel Cayo, 26-1. This earned him a title fight against the UK’s Amir Khan, 26-1, for his WBA Super World and IBF World super lightweight titles. It was in Peterson’s hometown of Washington, D.C. and he took a split decision win. He was only interested in defending the IBF title defeating Kendall Holt, 28-5, by stoppage in D.C.
In May of 2013 the roof fell in on Peterson when he lost to interim WBC champion Lucas Martin Matthysse, 33-2, of Argentina losing in three rounds. Neither were Matthysse or Peterson’s titles on the line. In January of 2014 he defended his IBF title defeating Haitian Dierry Jean, 25-0, of CAN, in DC. Next was Edgar Santana, 29-4, who he stopped at the Barclays Center, in Brooklyn, NY.
It would be eight months by April of 2015 for Peterson to once again be fighting a world champion in against WBA Super and WBC super lightweight champion Danny “Swift” Garcia, 29-0, in an overweight fight. This writer felt Peterson got the short end of the stick losing a majority decision to Garcia. He asked for a rematch in the welterweight division and never got it. Both he and Garcia would move up to welterweight and Garcia at No. 2 for some reason not wanting a rematch with No. 1 Kahn gets shop worn Robert Guerrero who was No. 6. No. 6? How did Peterson get overlooked?
It was six months after the Garcia fight that Peterson defeated Diaz that put him high into the rankings between Garica and Guerrero. Why wasn’t it him or Kahn in that title fight? In Garcia’s next fight he defeated Sammy Vargas. Though both were within the welterweight max of 147 it was listed as a non-title bout.
Now Garcia gets the biggest fight of his career fighting WBA champion Keith Thurman in March. With a victory for the No. 3 Peterson over the No. 1 Avanesyan for the interim WBA title will he get the winner? I’d say it is very doubtful. WBO champion Manny Pacquiao is defending against his No. 2 contender Australian Jeff Horn. IBF champion Kell Brook couldn’t come to terms with Kahn who is still the WBC No. 1 contender though not in the IBF rankings.
The WBC was to have a four boxer tournament with Peterson fighting Philly’s “The New” Ray Robinson currently ranked No. 9 in the WBC that never came about. Robinson has been begging for a fight with Garcia having won his last eleven fights. It seems they all want to fight Garcia who has a pair of disputed wins behind him so one may have to knock him out to get the win.
Peterson is not in easy with the Russian Avanesyan who hasn’t lost since the second bout of his career. In his last fight he defeated former champion Shane Mosley in May. Peterson finds himself only ranked in the WBA so getting a world title fight it seems it would have to take a Thurman victory. Peterson is trained by Virgil Hunter and being promoted by Al Haymon makes his chances to get that big fight for the title a lot better! That is his “Ace in the hole”.