Former middleweight champion David Lemieux moves to super middleweight to meet John Ryder in the co-main event to the May 4 Canelo Alvarez-Daniel Jacobs middleweight unification bout, Golden Boy Promotions announced Wednesday.
Lemieux (40-4, 34 knockouts) fell ill trying to cut weight for a middleweight bout at Madison Square Garden in December, and now meets the World Boxing Assn.’s top-ranked super-middleweight in Ryder (27-4, 15 KOs), who has lost previously to his English countrymen Billy Joe Saunders and Rocky Fielding.
“Lemieux was the hardest hitting puncher in the 160-pound division, and I’m absolutely certain he will be the biggest puncher at 168 pounds,” promoter Oscar De La Hoya said in a prepared statement.
Ryder promoter Eddie Hearn said he expects the Lemieux-Ryder winner to be named the mandatory contender for WBA champion Callum Smith.
The undercard will not include unbeaten lightweight prospect Ryan Garcia, 20, of Victorville.
Golden Boy President Eric Gomez told the Los Angeles Times there was not sufficient time to place Garcia on the card against a suitable opponent after Garcia scored a second-round knockout March 30 in Indio.
But another valued prospect, Texas’ Vergil Ortiz Jr. (12-0, 12 KOs), will be on the DAZN-streamed card, meeting veteran gatekeeper Mauricio Herrera (24-8, seven KOs) of Riverside in a welterweight meeting scheduled for 10 rounds.
Additionally, super-lightweight Pablo Cesar Cano (32-7-1, 22 KOs), coming off a surprising first-round knockout of former lightweight champion Jorge Linares, will meet Michael Perez (25-3-2, 11 KOs).
South El Monte’s former U.S. Olympian Joseph Diaz Jr. (28-1, 14 KOs) will fight a yet-to-be-announced super-featherweight opponent on the undercard, and former 154-pound world champion Sadam Ali will meet Anthony Young in a welterweight bout.