The opening bout on FOX saw Wale Omotoso (28-4, 22 KOs) drop Curtis Stevens (30-7, 22 KOs) three times on his way to a third round stoppage victory in their WBO Inter-Continetal Jr. Middleweight clash on FOX PBC Fight Night on FOX Deportes Saturday night from Barclays Center, the home of BROOKLYN BOXING™.

For Stevens it was his first fight at 154-pounds, and he was tested at the new weight from the outset. Omotoso began moving and jabbing around the ring as Stevens stalked him and tried to throw power punches to slow his movement. Late in the first round, Omotoso broke through with a right hand to the side of Stevens’ head that dropped him in the middle of the ring.

“My coach told me to keep my hands up, be patient, box him and jab,” said Omotoso. “He told me I shouldn’t push it and that when the opening was there, I’d take it. That’s exactly what happened.”

“He hit me with an overhand right in the first round that knocked my equilibrium,” said Stevens. “But that didn’t really affect me too much. I wasn’t stepping enough into my punches, I was reaching. I got caught when I was reaching.”

In round two Omotoso landed a perfect jab on Stevens, as his opponent was throwing a left hook, that sent him down for the second time in the fight. Stevens again made it through the round, and began the next frame trapping Omotoso in the corner and connecting on power punches.

“I was just letting my hands go,” said Omotoso. “On the second knockdown my confidence grew. I was glad to get the victory by knockout.”

While Stevens was able to own the early moments of the third round, Omotoso hit him with a three punch combo that featured left hook, left uppercut and then straight right hand that put Stevens down for the third time. Stevens got to his feet but referee Johnny Callas halted the bout at 1:28 of the third round.

“I was okay but the referee has to do his job,” said Stevens. “I was down three times so I know he was looking out for my best interests.”

“I didn’t expect it to go exactly like that,” said Omotoso. “I was just listening to my coach. The second knockdown was actually with my jab. I have to talk to my team about what’s next. I’m thankful for this opportunity. I’m so happy to have this win. Give me anybody next, I’m ready.”

Photo by Nabeel Ahmad/Premier Boxing Champions

31217lemieux00t  Story and photos by Boxing Bob Newman at ringside

A clash of big-punching middleweight contenders that figured to be an all-out war, turned out to be all that and more. Former IBF world champion David Lemieux (37-3, 33 KOs) scored a spectacular third round KO over Curtis “The Cerebral Assassin” Stevens (29-6, 21 KOs) on Saturday night at the Turning Stone Resort & Casino in Verona, NY. Both traded bombs the entire way and both had their moments. Lemieux ended matters with a crushing left hook in round three that put Stevens on the deck out cold. Time was 1:59.

“I told you what I was going to do tonight,” said Lemieux. “What I saw was a ‘check mate.’ The punch was made with perfect landing. I am in great shape, and I prepared myself for him. He is physically strong but nothing special. Stevens is a solid fighter, and we were successful. I wish him the best, and I hope he is OK.”

Smith was conscious when taken from the ring on a stretcher to a local hospital for observation.

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LemieuxStevensWeighIn_Hoganphotos1-800-696x419 The talking is over over. David Lemieux (left) and Curtis Stevens will have to back it up in the ring Saturday. Tom Hogan, Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Boxing

SAN DIEGO, March 9, 2017 – Middleweights David Lemieux and Curtis Stevens didn’t bother waiting for the opening bell in their fight scheduled on Saturday, March 11 on HBO. They have been swinging away at each other for weeks, verbally at least.

After watching the friendly interaction between the two during the post-fight news conference for their respective bouts on the Canelo vs. Khan undercard last May in Las Vegas, we asked them in an interview how they got along personally. It was an innocent question, we assure you. Release the hounds.

Release the hounds.

Stevens accused Lemieux of blowing him off before their bouts in Las Vegas when he tried to greet him. He called out Lemieux for talking trash about him to the boxing media instead of to his face. Stevens said, “Tell the doctor to bring smelling salts. They’re going to need to wake your ass up … You ain’t never fought nobody like me … Meet me in the middle of the ring. That’s all you’ve got to do.

“Your whole front furniture will be missing out of your mouth,” declared Stevens.

The normally reserved Lemieux (it’s a French-Canadian thing) had no trouble returning fire. “You ain’t never fought a guy like me. I’m going to destroy you March 11th. Don’t talk so much. You’re going to get knocked out. That’s what’s going to happen. I don’t care if his hand is 100 percent or a thousand percent. I’m going to go in there, I’m going to destroy him.

“This is what I want. I want you to come like a raging bull. I want you to come like a raging bull, champ.”

LemieuxStevensWeighIn_Hoganphotos-800-696x419 David Lemieux (left) and Curtis Stevens have not been shy about expressing their animosity toward each other leading up to Saturday’s fight. Photo: Tom Hogan, Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Boxing

Later, Lemieux said “I’m not really worked up at all. It’s just stuff. Sometimes it really makes me laugh, just the trash, the way he talks and the lack of professionalism he has … But sometimes when he says some things I’ve got to reply … So there’s emotion — nothing really gets to me. I know what I’m going to do on March 11th. My focus is there.”