By Dave Spencer / Fightnews Canada
Almost twenty years after they squared as a pair of undefeated fighters for the WBO heavyweight world championship in 1991, veterans Ray “Merciless” Mercer and Tommy “The Duke” Morrison will share the same ring in a pair of separate bouts scheduled for February 25th in Montreal. Newly formed SP Promotions is certainly stirring the pot and bringing back names long since forgotten as it travels back in time and is resurrecting names either recently or long since forgotten. Also joining the senior circuit will be two-time world title challenger Joe Gatti, brother of Arturo and over eight years removed from his last fight. Gatti who is 43 years-old is scheduled to meet Walid Smichet who at 31 and also recently retired qualifies as a young buck amongst most of the night’s combatants.
Mercer who turns 50 in April has fought semi-regularly over the years and will be entering his fourth decade of professional prize fighting. The former WBO champion last fought in 2008, a year in which he challenged for a North American title. Mercer is scheduled to meet local heavyweight Stephane Tessier (3-26-1), who unlike most on the card, is active, but who hasn’t won in five years and twenty-five fights.
Former WBO and Rocky V star Morrison who turned 42 last week hopes that the Montreal fight will help kick-start his career, something he’s been trying to do for the past few years. “My career got railroaded,” Morrison told Fightnews. “It got side-tracked over something that wasn’t true. I’m still young and I’ve never gotten too far away from the sport. I still have what it takes and I believe it is still one of my goals. I believe I’ve what boxing’s been missing, they need somebody to watch. I’m licensed in both New Zealand and Canada, so we look forward to getting busy.” Morrison is scheduled to be meeting Eric Barrack, a 3-0 heavyweight who last saw action in 2008.
Tune in to Fightnews tomorrow for the full Tommy Morrison interview where he opens up and talks about HIV testing, licensing, and his time away from the ring.