MONTREAL - Canada's Jean Pascal will face light heavyweight champion Sergey (Crusher) Kovalev on March 14 at the Bell Centre, the fight promoters announced Wednesday.
The former WBC champion from Laval, Que., will try to wrest the WBO, IBF and WBA belts from Kovalev, who unified the titles with a convincing 12-round victory over veteran Bernard Hopkins on Nov. 8.
Pascal (29-2-1) is coming off a controversial bout last week that was ruled a no contest when opponent Roberto Bolonti did not get up after he was hit coming out of a clinch in the second round of a scheduled 10-round bout.
The clash between Pascal and Kovalev (26-0-1) was finalized when the Russian's promoter Kathy Duva got an exemption from a mandatory defence against Najib Mohammedi, who will appear in the co-feature against an opponent yet to be determined.
Kovalev already held the WBO title when he took the IBF and WBA belts from Hopkins.
The belt from the fourth major sanctioning body, the WBC, is owned by Adonis Stevenson of Montreal. He will make his fourth defence against Dmitry Sukhotsky on Friday night in Quebec City.
It is a busy time for Canada's top boxers.
Last week, it was announced that Bermane Stiverne (24-1-1), formerly of Montreal and now living in Las Vegas, will make his first defence of his WBC heavyweight title Jan. 17 against power-punching American Deontay Wilder, who has won all of his 32 pro fights by knockout.
Stiverne won the title, which had been vacated by Vitali Klitschko's retirement, with a victory on May 10 over Chris Arreola.