Francis The People’s Champion Lafrenier emerged victorious for the eleventh consecutive time (14-5-2) on Friday night (January 20th) with a solid knock-out victory over Mexico’s Manuel Garcia (15-13-2). What made the dominant display even more impressive, was that Lafreniere took the bout on short notice, and it was revealed following the fight that he had undertaken a massive gambit by accepting the challenge. Had he been injured, the current IBF international middleweight champion would have jeopardized his next bout, which will be the biggest of his professional career. On February 24th, at the Centre Videotron in Quebec City, Lafrenier is set to face American Marcus Willis for the vacant WBO middleweight title. Also on the card, will be Lucien Bute (32-3-1) versus Eleider Alvarez (21-0-0) , with the winner set to face off against Adonis Stevenson (28-1-0) for the WBC World light heavyweight title.
In other action from the Tohu, Roody “Rude Boy” Pierre-Paul (13-3-1) defeated Abraham Gomez (16-23-3) with an eighth round referee stoppage. Golden Garcia (8-0-0)defeated Maximino Toala (11-5-0) by unanimous decision, while Dwayne Durel (5-0-0) knocked out Isidro Toala (9-4-1). Jordan Balmir (2-0-0) earned a fourth round knock out victory over Roody Rene (1-4-1), and Joel Theriault (1-0-0), the former Washington Capitals draft pick, won a unanimous decision over Jose Vazquez (5-3-0). Whitney Baille (3-0-0) earned a rapid first round knock out of Arturo Garcia Lujano (7-7-0) to start off the evening.
Montreal’s Bell Center will play host to a boxing gala this coming January 28th, when Montreal native Steven Butler (18-0-1) takes on Brandon Cook (17-0-0). The two undefeated Canadian boxers, both with belts and titles, were originally due to meet last October, and will finally square off in just a few days time.
Feature photo caption: Francis Lafrenier strikes Manuel Garcia
Photos and text: Kieron Yates – mtltimes.ca