Unless they have reached Floyd Mayweather Jr. or Manny Pacquiao levels, world champions’ path to rewarding paydays usually require obligations.
For elite fighters such as Mayweather and Pacquiao, a sanctioning-body title is not a necessity when securing marquee bouts. Mayweather and Pacquiao have sufficient clout in selling a fight that the belt becomes insignificant.
Fighters, like Tallahassee’s Tavoris Cloud, belong to the contrasting majority. Cloud needs to defend his International Boxing Federation light-heavyweight title in his bid of crossing the threshold into lucrative bouts. As a result, Cloud’s next ring appearance will be a mandatory title defense and a fight that will probably lack the backdrop of network television. According to Cloud’s trainer, Al Bonanni, whenever Cloud fights again he will face the IBF’s mandatory challenger, Karo Murat of Germany.
“We don’t know when it’s going to happen and where,” Bonanni said. “The mandatory deadline ran out.”
Bonanni said Cloud’s promoter, Don King, is currently negotiating with Murat’s representatives to secure a date and site. The IBF will order a purse bid if both camps cannot reach an agreement.
Cloud, who has made four successful title defenses, thought he had landed a productive payday in his previously scheduled bout. The IBF granted Cloud a mandatory deadline extension so he would face former light-heavyweight champion Jean Pascal on Aug. 11.
The Showtime-televised fight was slated for boxing hotbed Montreal, where Pascal has a huge following. But Pascal sustained a hand injury three weeks before the fight, resulting in its cancellation.
“We’ve had to move past Pascal,” Bonanni said. “Cloud was ready to go for that fight and the cancellation that late before the fight was a huge blow. Now he is just ready to get the call for his next fight.”
Cloud (24-0, 19 KOs) has not fought since winning a controversial decision against Spain’s Gabriel Campillo on Feb. 18. After the IBF denied Campillo’s appeal for an immediate rematch, Bonanni said Cloud’s future fight plans don’t include a rematch with Campillo.
While King looks to finalize Cloud’s next fight date, the Deerfield Beach-based promoter also plans to present another show at Casino Miami Jai-Alai Fronton on Nov. 16.
Bonanni, who will work as the show’s matchmaker, said the card will feature local fighters Angelo Santana, Joey Hernandez and Azea Augustama. The card’s main event will feature unbeaten junior middleweight Omar Henry against a yet-to-be-announced opponent.
King presented the first show in eight years at Miami Jai-Alai on April 14.
Edwin Rodriguez scored an eighth-round technical knockout over Jason Escalera in a bout between unbeaten super middleweights late Saturday in Mashantucket, Conn.
Rodriguez (22-0, 15 KOs) outclassed Escalera through the first seven rounds and pinned him to the ropes with multiple combinations to the head early in the eighth. Referee Steve Smoger spared Escalera (13-1-1) from added harm and stopped the bout 12 seconds into the round.
On the same card, three-division world champion Vic Darchinyan continued his quest for a fourth weight-class title with a unanimous decision over Orlando Del Valle. Darchinyan, a former bantamweight, junior bantamweight and flyweight titleholder, is now fighting as a junior featherweight.