Heavyweight contender Bryant Jennings will return to the ring on June 14th against Andrey Fedosov as part of a tripleheader that will be televised by NBC Sports Network from the Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem, P.A.
Jennings (16-0) has been out of the ring since knocking out Bowie Tupou last December. Earlier this year, Jennings was strongly considered as an opponent for unified titleholder Wladimir Klitschko. HBO wanted Klitschko-Jennings to serve as the undercard for Floyd Mayweather’s return on May 4th. When Mayweather defected to Showtime, Klitschko switched to Francesco Pianeta, who is better known in Europe.
“I'm not that disappointed, well, in a way I am,” Jennings told me in an interview on NBC. “After this fight he'll probably be tied up with mandatories and stuff like that, so that probably puts [a title shot] on hold. I’m in this game. I’m not going nowhere. I’ll just keep doing what I have to do. I'll just have to keep taking these fights, keep winning, keep training and keep doing what I’m supposed to do and those opportunities will come.”
Fedesov (24-2) has won his last three fights since dropping a split decision to Lance Whitaker in 2010.
The co-main event will feature light heavyweight contender Sergey Kovalev (20-0) against Cornelius White (21-1-1). Kovalev, 30, is considered one of the best 175-pound prospects in boxing and is coming off a third-round knockout of former titleholder Gabriel Campillo. HBO has a strong interest in Kovalev, and if he gets past White there could be a significant fight for Kovalev in the fall. Tavoris Cloud, who lost his IBF title to Bernard Hopkins last month, has been mentioned as a possible candidate.
In the opener welterweight Ronald Cruz, a local favorite, will try to rebound from his first career loss last September. Cruz (17-1) will take on Jaime Herrera (10-2) in a ten-round fight.
– Chris Mannix