It had been nearly three years since former super middleweight champion Jeff Lacy fought when he stepped into the ring Saturday to take on journeyman Martin Verdin in a light heavyweight fight in Baton Rouge, La.
Lacy stopped the 37-year-old Verdin (20-17-2) in the third round, making Lacy a happy man.
“It felt great to be back under the lights and fighting in front of a crowd,” said Lacy, 36, of St. Petersburg, Fla. “There was some rust, but that was to be expected. But I’m 100 percent healthy and I’m happy with my timing and my ability to put punches together in space.”
Lacy (26-4, 18 KOs) said he plans to get back down to super middleweight and campaign there for another chance at a world title.
“Give me one or two more fights at this level, then I’ll be ready for a top 20 guy,” he said.
Adonis Stevenson has become a much-talked about fighter these days. The light heavyweight champion from Canada on Saturday gave people even more to talk about with yet another defense that ended inside the distance.
Stevenson, 36, stopped Tony Bellew of England in the sixth round of their main event in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.
That gives Stevenson a record of 23-1 with 20 knockouts; he has a knockout ratio of 83.3 percent.
The fight was televised by HBO.
Another light heavyweight champion – Sergey Kovalev of Russia – also defended his title in impressive fashion in the semi-main event. Kovalev knocked out Ismayl Sillakh (21-2) of the Ukraine in the second round.
Kovalev, 30, is now 23-0-1 with 21 knockouts. He has a knockout ratio of 87.5 percent, leaving one to wonder what a fight between Stevenson and Kovalev would produce.