Usyk to face Chazz Witherspoon with Spong booted from card

Chazz Witherspoon was recently suspended by the Pennsylvania Athletic Commission for pulling out of a fight, but he will still get a shot at one of boxing’s best.

FightNights.com has learned that Witherspoon will Tyrone Spong as Oleksandr Usyk’s opponent for Usyk’s heavyweight debut Saturday night (DAZN) at Wintrust Arena in Chicago. The 38-year-old Witherspoon, who has fought just twice since 2016, will have less than a week to prepare.

Spong (14-0, 13 KO’s), a former mixed martial arts fighter from Suriname, tested positive for the banned substance clomiphene in a random drug test conducted by the Voluntary-Anti-Doping Association (VADA). The results were revealed on Monday evening.

Clomiphene is usually taken as post cycle therapy to moderate testosterone levels now that its no longer being synthetically injected.

Usyk (16-0, 12 KO's), a 32-year-old became the first cruiserweight to unify all four belts in the four-belt era when he won a lopsided unanimous decision against Murat Gassiev in the final of the World Boxing Super Series in July 2018. Usyk then defended all four of his belts with an eighth-round knockout of Tony Bellew in November before vacating his titles and announcing his move to the heavyweight division.

Usyk, a southpaw who captured an Olympic gold medal in 2012 representing his native Ukraine, has not fought all year. He was set to debut at heavyweight against Carlos Takam on May 25 at the MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland, but he suffered a torn right bicep during training and was forced to postpone his heavyweight debut until Saturday evening.

Witherspoon (38-3, 29 KO’s), 38, of Philadelphia, has won eight bouts consecutively since suffering a third-round knockout at the hands of Seth Mitchell in April 2012. However, his opposition has been less than impressive.

Now, he is set to face Usyk, one of boxing’s best pound-for-pound stars.

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