The return of two-time junior middleweight world titleholder Demetrius Andrade was made official on Thursday with the announcement that he will take on Alantez Fox on Oct. 21 in the co-feature of an HBO-televised card from the Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, New York.
Andrade’s fight will be the first of a recently signed three-fight contract with HBO, though the contract specifics were not part of the fight announcement.
Andrade-Fox, a scheduled 12-round middleweight bout, will be part of the “Boxing After Dark” card (10:05 p.m. ET/PT) headlined by the fight between junior lightweight titlist Jezreel Corrales (22-1, 8 KOs), of Panama, defending against Puerto Rico’s Alberto Machado (18-0, 15 KOs).
“First of all I need to thank HBO, and especially [HBO Sports executive vice president] Peter Nelson for giving me this tremendous opportunity. Thanks to him, I get a chance to not only have a great fight on Oct. 21st, but I also get to show my fans on prime time that I’m the best fighter in the junior middleweight and now the middleweight division,” Andrade said. “I can’t wait for the chance to fight more often and against the very best, and thanks to HBO I finally have that chance. And I’m looking forward to giving my fans a great performance and I’m going to show them how much I appreciate their support by giving them a great show.”
Andrade (24-0, 16 KOs), a 29-year-old southpaw from Providence, Rhode Island, traveled to Ludwigshafen, Germany, in March and won a split decision against hometown fighter Jack Culcay to claim a secondary 154-pound world title. But with HBO so heavily involved in the middleweight division — it is the television home for unified world champion Gennady Golovkin, Canelo Alvarez, David Lemieux and newly signed Daniel Jacobs — Andrade is moving up in weight to test the waters against Fox (23-0-1, 11 KOs).
“I am very happy for Demetrius to be back in the ring on HBO. There are a lot of compelling fights that could take place on HBO for Demetrius’ future career,” said Banner Promotions CEO Artie Pelullo, who co-promotes Andrade with Joe DeGuardia of Star Boxing.
The 6-foot-4 Fox, a 25-year-old prospect from Forestville, Maryland, is also moving up in weight and taking a major step up in competition level when he faces the 6-1 Andrade, a 2007 world amateur champion and 2008 U.S. Olympian.
“The Olympics were 10 years ago. He is not the same fighter,” Fox said. “I don’t see anything that he will do that can put a loss on my record. I am going on HBO to put on a boxing exhibition.”
Fox promoter Lou DiBella is also confident in his fighter.
“Alantez Fox is a tall, rangy, powerful and undefeated middleweight contender,” DiBella said.
“‘Boo Boo’ Andrade is a great fighter, but we believe that Fox is up to the challenge.”
The HBO telecast will also include same-day taped coverage of the bantamweight world title unification fight between Ryan Burnett (17-0, 9 KOs), 25, of Northern Ireland, and Zhanat Zhakiyanov (27-1, 18 KOs), 33, of Kazakhstan, who meet at SSE Arena in Belfast, Burnett’s hometown.