MONTREAL - Former champion Joachim Alcine will have a chance to get back at his former promoters when he takes on David Lemieux, the new stud in their boxing stable, for the WBC International middleweight title.
Alcine (32-2-1) said Wednesday he was pressured into fighting despite having a cataract in his left eye when he was knocked out by Daniel Santos to lose the World Boxing Association light middleweight title in 2008.
Alcine's statement was denied by promoter Yvon Michel and his former trainer Howard Grant.
"I'm telling the truth; I shouldn't have been in the ring," the 35-year-old Alcine said. "The doctor told me straight I have a cataract.
"The doctor said 'it's your choice to fight or not fight.' And me, I decided to fight because they told me that if I didn't fight I'd lose my belt."
He said he only found out later that the bout could have been postponed until after the surgery.
Grant admitted Alcine had a problem with the eye and intended to have surgery after the bout, but he was cleared to fight by an ophthalmologist and by the local boxing commission doctor.
"I'm not an idiot, I would never put one of my fighters at such a risk, to put him in danger," said Grant. "For what? For me to make $5,000 or $10,000. It makes no sense at all.
"The doctor told him 'you're fine to fight.' When you lose, you lose. You don't try to make excuses or try to point fingers at individuals."
Alcine, now with American promoter Lou DiBella, is working with California-based trainer Anthony Wilson. The Haitian-born fighter is trying to work his way back to a world title bout.
Lemieux (25-1) is coming off his first loss, a seventh round stoppage by Marco Antonio Rubio in April. He also has a new trainer in Marc Ramsay, after a split with trainer and manager Russ Anber.
Both claim to be new, improved versions of their former selves.
Lemieux and Alcine, both of Montreal, will be the main event on a 10-fight card at the Bell Centre on Saturday night that also has hard-hitting Adonis Stevenson (15-1) of Longueuil, Que., battling for three minor belts against Aaron Pryor Jr. (16-4), the six-foot-four son of the former light welterweight champ.
There is also an NABA light heavyweight title bout between Eleider (Storm) Alvarez (6-0) of Montreal and Emiliano Cayetano (21-3) of the Dominican Republic.