Before Tyson Fury and Steve Cunningham go at it in the heavyweight showdown of the year on NBC network television, at The Theater at Madison Square Garden in the afternoon of April 20th, a loaded undercard will warm up the New York crowd and have them ready for the anticipated main event.
The stacked undercard is led by an 8-round middleweight match between Brooklyn’s Curtis “Showtime” Stevens, 23-3, 17 KOs, and Chicago’s Derrick “Superman” Findley, 20-9, 13 KOs. This nationally televised co-feature is likely to be a punch-out, with both fighters known as straight forward battlers with a taste for knockouts. The NBC broadcast will begin at 4PM ET. Stevens has smoked his last two foes in a single round, and Findley toppled Ronald Hearns, the son of the great Thomas Hearns, in his last knockout win.
Also featured on the undercard is undefeated Philly lightweight Karl “Dynamite” Dargan, 12-0, 6 KOs, in a 6-rounder against Sergi Ganjelashvili, 4-5-1, of Ft. Lauderdale, FL. This will already be the second fight of 2013 for Dargan, who has vowed to stay active after a stop-and-start couple of years in the ring. With his uncle, top-flight trainer Brother Naazim Richardson, in his corner, Dargan is expected to make his move in the division this year, and finally reach the potential that his stellar amateur career suggested would come his way. Dargan will look to score lucky win #13 against Ganjelashvili.
Cruiserweights Sevdail “The Illyrian” Sherifi, 9-1-2, 8 KOs, and Josh “The Juice” Harris, 8-6-1, 6 KOs, will clash in a heavy-fisted 6-rounder. Both fighters will enter the ring with excellent knockout stats. All but one of the Sherifi’s wins have come by KO, while Harris, the southpaw from Youngstown, OH, has stoppage wins over Alex Mejias and Jaywon Woods to his credit. Chances are this fight will end long before the final bell.
Undefeated Brooklyn-based but Poland-born heavyweight Adam Kownacki, 4-0, 4 KOs, takes on Calbert Lewis, 0-2, of Gary, IN, in a 4 round preliminary bout. The Polish puncher will look to keep his record perfect, while Lewis will chase his first victory as a pro.
Hughie Fury, the cousin of main eventer Tyson Fury, will make his American debut in a 4-round fight. His opponent has not yet been confirmed, but just like his more famous relative, the younger Fury will be looking to make an impression on the Garden boxing fans. The 18-year old Hughie is also a heavyweight, but measures a ‘”mere” 6’ 6″, a full three inches shorter than his gargantuan cousin.
After the undercard brawls are finished and the smoke finally clears, the MSG crowd will be in the perfect mood for the big 12-round heavyweight eliminator between Fury and Cunningham.
The main event is an official IBF Heavyweight Voluntary Eliminator fight for the #2 position. The winner must meet #1 or the leading available contender to establish the mandatory challenger for Heavyweight King Wladimir Klitschko.