Dmitry Bivol, Maurice Hooker To Defend Titles On March DAZN Card

DAZN is returning to New York for a boxing card in March.

The streaming platform held a press conference to formally announce the signing of Dmitry Bivol to DAZN as well as reveal the details of his next WBA light heavyweight title defense.

Bivol will fight Joe Smith Jr. at the Turning Stone Resort and Casino in Verona, New York on March 9. The fight will be Bivol's fifth title defense since being elevated from interim titleholder to full champion in 2017. Smith, who defeated Bernard Hopkins in 2016, will be in his first world title fight. Smith is currently ranked in the top 15 by the WBA, IBF and WBO at 175 pounds.

Another world title fight was announced for the card: Maurice Hooker vs. Mikkel LesPierre for the WBO junior welterweight title. Hooker will make his DAZN debut in his second world title defense after winning the belt in 2018. Hooker was supposed to fight on DAZN against mandatory challenger Alex Saucedo but after Top Rank won a purse bid, the bout was moved to ESPN.

LesPierre, ranked No. 14 by the WBO at junior welterweight, is undefeated as a pro boxer, winning the WBC USNBC and WBC FECARBOX titles in the past 13 months. LesPierre has won his last 19 fights after his second pro bout ended in a draw.

The event is the first of two planned boxing events taking place in March with another currently penciled in for St. Patrick's Day weekend, but the event has yet to be formally announced.

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