On Saturday night January 19th former world title challenger Elvin Ayala (26-5-1, 12 KOs) will take on Curtis Stevens (22-3, 16 KOs) in a Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Connecticut in a bout to be televised by the NBC Sports Network. For the thirty-one year old Ayala, this fight is a chance to get to the head of the line for a second world title opportunity. It is also a “full circle” moment for Ayala as he is training in the place where he was born in Reading, Pennsylvania under the eye of trainer Marshall Kauffman.
“I was born in Reading but I have lived in New Haven, Connecticut for the better part of a decade. So this is a homecoming in many ways as I get to train where I grew up and I am fighting so close to the place which is my adopted home”, said Ayala. But standing in front of him is noted “Chin Checker”, Curtis “Showtime” Stevens.
“Stevens is a strong, durable and has skills. This is a fight I need to prove who I am. This is a great fight for me and Stevens is well known.”
Ayala is very excited about the exposure that the fight will have being on the popular NBC Sports Network “Fight Night” Series.
“This is great exposure that will help me on to bigger and better things.”
Ayala has been on the biggest stages as he lost to IBF middleweight champion Arthur Abraham In a bout where Ayala put up a valiant fight before being stopped just twenty-eight seconds before the final bell in round twelve.
“Stevens has been in with great fighters but I have been with the best and have wins over guys who are very decorated. I respect all fighters but I wasn’t ready to fight Abraham. That fight did give me great experience. Stevens is dangerous but he is not Abraham.”
Ayala is referencing his career ledger which shows wins over former world title challenger Larry Marks plus a draw with former Jr. Middleweight world champion Sergio Mora in a bout most people believe Ayala was the winner.
Ayala has won six straight with half of those coming via knockout and he knows what a win on January 19th will do for him.
“A win will open a lot of doors. The Middleweight division is one of the deepest divisions so a win will put me in the mix for one of the big names.”