Dmitry Bivol takes on Joe Smith Jr in a light heavyweight title main event.
Tonight at 7:00 pm ET streaming live on DAZN, Dmitry Bivol returns in the main event to defend his WBA light heavyweight title against power punching challenger Joe Smith Jr, with Maurice Hooker defending his WBO junior welterweight title against Mikkel LesPierre in the co-feature.
Bivol (15-0, 11 KO) has been on a tear the past couple of years, making a name for himself in the 175-pound division with destructive victories over Samuel Clarkson, Cedric Agnew, and Trent Broadhurst, before stepping up his competition a bit. His last three wins have come over Sullivan Barrera, Isaac Chilemba, and former champ Jean Pascal, and he’s proven he has the motor to go 12 rounds effectively in those outings, all one-sided in his favor.
Smith (24-2, 20 KO) probably can’t box with Bivol, but he’s a legitimately dangerous puncher and an intriguing underdog because of that. Smith really got on the radar with his first round TKO win over Andrzej Fonfara in 2016, and used the headlines he made from that win to land a fight with Bernard Hopkins six months later, where he knocked the legendary Hopkins out of the ring, literally and figuratively. He suffered a loss and a broken jaw at the hands of Sullivan Barrera in 2017, but came back last summer with a tune-up win, and now he’s stepping back into the spotlight.
Hooker (25-0-3, 17 KO) had trouble making weight on Friday, but eventually did it, and will defend his 140-pound belt against LesPierre (21-0-1, 10 KO), an unbeaten but unproven challenger.
The show will also feature Callum Johnson (17-1, 12 KO) facing Seanie Monaghan (29-2, 17 KO) in a light heavyweight fight, and heavyweight action between Sergey Kuzmin (14-0, 11 KO) and Joey Dawejko (19-6-4, 11 KO). Both of those fights are set for 10 rounds.
Wil Esco is on the call tonight.