Michael Hunter returns to action, will face Donnie Palmer on June 24
Heavyweight Michael Hunter will finally make his return to the ring.
Hunter will face Donnie Palmer on June 24, promoter Michael Reyes announced late Thursday. The 10-round bout will take place at the Memorial Auditorium in Lowell, Massachusetts.
The 34-year-old did confirm with The Ring last Friday he was returning to action on this date.
Hunter (20-1-2, 14 knockouts), who lives and trains in Las Vegas, Nevada, has not fought since a split-decision draw against Jerry Forrest in December 2021. He also fought to a split-decision draw against Alexander Povetkin in December 2019.
Throughout his career, Hunter does have wins over unbeaten fighters, including Martin Bakole, Sergey Kuzmin, and Isiah Thomas. Hunter has also defeated the likes of Iago Kiladze, Alexander Ustinov, and Fabio Maldonado.
Hunter is unbeaten in his last 10 bouts since suffering his only defeat as a pro at the hands of then-WBO world cruiserweight titleholder Oleksandr Usyk in April 2017.
Over the last several weeks, Hunter has competed in the Team Combat League, racking up seven wins against no defeats. He defeated both Hasim Rahman, Jr. and Jerry Forrest on June 2. Hunter also fought twice on April 27, defeating Rahman, Jr. and Norman Neely, and on May 18, twice defeating Devon Young.
Hunter is scheduled to again fight in Team Combat League action tonight, facing Scott Alexander at the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Connecticut.
Palmer (12-3-1, 10 KOs), who resides in nearby Dorchester, last fought on January 28, losing by unanimous decision to once-beaten Steve Vukosa. The 6’10” Palmer had won his previous three fights since losing by knockout to Joe Joyce in March 2018.
In the co-feature, lightweight William Silva (30-4, 18 KOs) of Sao Paulo, Brazil will square off against gatekeeper Raul Chirino (22-16, 13 KOs) of Miami, Florida in a 10-round bout.
In a clash between unbeaten lightweights, Gabriel Morales (7-0, 4 KOs) of Lowell will face Mexico’s Alfredo Jimenez Espino in a six-round bout.
Junior middleweight Chris Thompson (9-0, 6 KOs) of Kansas City, Missouri, will square off against Uruguay’s Andres Viera (11-5, 8 KOs) in an eight-round bout.
Welterweight Tahmir Smalls (9-0, 6 KOs) of Philadelphia will face Colombia’s Heivinson Herrera (28-22-1, 22 KOs) in an eight-round bout.
In middleweight action, Rayton Okwiri (8-1-1, 6 KOs) of Nairobi, Kenya will square off Denver’s Erick Kedar Gianous (6-0, 4 KOs) in an eight-round bout.
Francisco A. Salazar has written for The Ring since October 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper. He can be reached at [email protected]