Thursday, March 23, 2023  |



Showtime will broadcast Kell Brook vs. Jo Jo Dan in U.S.

Shawn Porter (R) receives a punch form Kell Brook, who would take Porter's IBF welterweight title by unanimous decision on Aug. 16, 2014. Photo by Naoki Fukuda

Shawn Porter (R) receives a punch form Kell Brook, who would take Porter’s IBF welterweight title by unanimous decision on Aug. 16, 2014. Photo by Naoki Fukuda

Kell Brook’s IBF welterweight title defense against Jo Jo Dan on March 28 in Sheffield, England, will be shown live in the U.S. on Showtime Sports.

Showtime also screened the unbeaten Englishman taking the title from American holder Shawn Porter last August. Brook, 28, has not fought since then after being the victim of a serious stabbing attack while on holiday in the Canary Islands just a few weeks later. Given those career-threatening events in Tenerife, Brook’s promoter, Eddie Hearn, admits the Yorkshireman’s first defense will be an evening to remember for everyone, whether at the Sheffield Motorpoint Arena or watching at home.

March 28 will be an emotional night for Kell and the team,” said the Matchroom supremo. “I remember being by his bedside in September in a Spanish hospital after that horrific knife attack. It looked like his career was over. He has shown incredible physical and mental strength and looks better than ever in camp.

Fans on Showtime will get to see, in my opinion, the best 147-pounder in the world light up a 10,000 sell-out arena – don’t miss it!”

Brook (33-0, 22 knockouts) cannot wait to get back into the ring after his enforced break and remains intent on cleaning up the division, by first taking care of Canada-based IBF mandatory challenger Dan and then looking to fight the winner of the May 2 welterweight blockbuster between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao.

After everything that’s happened over the last six months, it feels incredible knowing I will be defending my world title in Sheffield,” said Brook. “I’m not looking past Jo Jo. I know he will bring the heat but I want to get this mandatory defense done and then target those mega-fights that are out there in the division.

I know he feels he worked so hard to get into the mandatory position – just like I did – but I will be working twice as hard to keep the belt that I earned. After May 2, there will only be two champions in the division – myself and Floyd or Manny. I want to unify this division in style. I’m coming for them all.”

Dan, though, has warned he will inflict a major upset by becoming the first to defeat Brook, THE RING’s No. 2-ranked welterweight.

Kell has not fought anyone like me. I believe in myself and I don’t think he can bring anything I can’t deal with on fight night,” said 33-year-old Dan (34-2, 18 KOs). “I saw his last fight where he won the title and it was a great performance, but I just let my team study him in depth and come up with a winning strategy. I have waited a long time to get a title shot so I am determined to take advantage of this opportunity. My prediction for the fight is simple: Jo Jo Dan becomes the new IBF welterweight champion.”

Brook-Dan will be broadcast live on Showtime at 6:15pm ET/3:15pm PT. Later that evening, live on Showtime (10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT), WBC featherweight holder Jhonny Gonzalez (57-8, 48 KOs) defends his belt against Gary Russell Jr. (25-1, 14 KOs) in the main event on Showtime Championship Boxing, from The Pearl at Palms Resort Casino, Las Vegas. Showtime Boxing International will then replay Brook-Dan immediately following the Showtime Championship Boxing telecast.

Harry Pratt is on Twitter: @gharrypratt