Fight Pick & Preview – Stevenson vs. Fonfara:
After his much-publicized parting with HBO, Adonis Stevenson will be making his first appearance under the Al Haymon banner, fighting on Showtime, in his first fight since stopping Tony Bellew in the 6th round.
The 36-year-old will be facing the relatively unknown Andrzej Fonfara, a 26-year-old fighter who hails from Poland and is currently based out Chicago. This is certainly a matchup that is anticlimactic compared to what a bout with Sergey Kovalev would have provided, but it will have to do for now.
ProBoxing-Fans.com Light Heavyweight Championship
Adonis Stevenson, 23-1 (20 KO’s) Port-au-Prince, Haiti Vs. Andrzej Fonfara, 25-2 (15 KO’s) Radom, Poland
Date: May 24, 2014
Site: Bell Centre, Montreal, Quebec
Many project Fonfara will be a sacrificial lamb for Stevenson and in a sense they might be right. Fonfara, however, shouldn’t be completely overlooked. He has won 12 of the last 13 fights by way of knockout., including an impressive 9th round TKO over Gabriel Campillo. In addition, he has a decision win over Glen Johnson, though he was certainly past his best by the time he met Fonfara.
The main sticking point here is that Stevenson has that extra dimension of fight-changing power. Fonfara, while competent, well-trained, and ambitious, is more of a steady and professional type, but without any facets of his game that really stand out. In addition, Stevenson is not just a simple slugger. There are some less-appreciated aspects to his game. He uses angles well, makes good use of his southpaw style, and exhibits good athleticism.
Fonfara is a guy who could spring an upset, but he’s going to need a really off-night from Stevenson to do it. Stevenson could potentially overlook Fonfara, who might not be formidable enough to rouse his respect. If Stevenson comes into the ring with a lax attitude and foolishly looks for the one-shot stoppage, Fonfara could use his sound boxing and good form to win rounds. But every other scenario seems to favor Stevenson.
The fight will be in Quebec, which also favors Stevenson, and he will likely come up trying to prove he is the best in the division by swinging away early. Fonfara does hold some decent power, but likely not enough to keep Stevenson at bay.
Stevenson may not be the most durable guy, but if looking for an upset candidate, you’d like to see someone with heavier hands than Fonfara. The Pole can wear guys down, but his lack of one-punch zip will cost him against Stevenson. Stevenson has only been stopped once, by Darnell Boone, which was because he was reckless in his pursuit of the knockout.
Stevenson vs. Fonfara Prediction
I’m going with the obvious choice here. Fonfara just doesn’t have the skill set and necessary tools to win this fight. Stevenson’s athletic abilities are hard to match by anyone at this weight right now. His awkward southpaw style, his quick hands, and ferocious punching power all make him a force to be reckoned with.
With the exceptions of perhaps Bernard Hopkins and Sergey Kovalev, nobody else stands a chance at light heavyweight. I believe Stevenson will dominate the action for as long as it lasts, which I surmise will not be very long.
Prediction: Stevenson by 2nd Round KO