I was a big fan of Adonis Stevenson before and especially right after he won the title. I picked him to beat Chad Dawson for the lineal World Light Heavyweight Championship and he proved my prediction to be correct, but even faster than I thought. His first few defenses weren't too bad, but over the last few years he has thoroughly and consistently disappointed me with his shameless ducking of the best light heavyweight opposition, i.e.: Bernard Hopkins, Sergey Kovalev, Andre Ward, etc. He has played a nice, lucrative game of duck, duck, goose with the light heavyweight title by defending it against subpar competition in his backyard thanks to his local fanbase and one Mr. Al Haymon.
Which brings me to his fight tomorrow night against undefeated contender Oleksandr Gvozdyl. Gvozdyl is from the talent-rich nation of the Ukraine which currently has the World Cruiserweight Champion Oleksandr Usyk and the World Lightweight Champion Vasyl Lomachencko, both being current top-ten pound for pound fighters. Gvozdyl may not be as talented as those two men, but he is a very skilled, hard hitting light heavyweight and I am picking him to dethrone the current champion Adonis Stevenson, who I personally think is ripe for the taking. He is 41 years old and barely kept his title in his last defense against Badou Jack who himself is a very good fighter, but he is no Gvozdyl. That fight ended in a draw.
I see tomorrow's fight ending badly for Stevenson mainly because Gvozdyl is a slick inside puncher who hits hard and we all know Stevenson has somewhat of a suspect chin. Gvozdyl is willing to mix it up inside which is a dangerous game against the champion because even at 41, Stevenson hits like a truck. However, I see this playing into the challenger's favor and I am picking him to become the new lineal World Light Heavyweight Champion by 8th round knockout. If my prediction turns out to be correct, hopefully we will then get to see the lineal champion face the best in the talent deep light heavyweight division. Gvozdyl vs. the Alvarez-Kovalev winner. Gvozdyl vs. Bivol. Gvozdyl vs. Beterbiev. Maybe even Gvozdyl vs. Ward if he were to ever decide to return to the ring. My point obviously being, the best should fight the best and with Stevenson out of the picture, that just might happen. War Gvozdyl!