With talk of the winner getting a crack at a world title, Karim “Hard Hitta” Mayfield (18-0-1, 11 KOs) and heavy-handed Thomas Dulorme (20-1, 18 KOs) will battle March 29 for the vacant NABF crown at The Boardwalk in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
Mayfield was last seen disposing of Christopher Fernandez in eight one-sided rounds. Dulorme pounded out a unanimous decision over veteran Hector Velazquez last November. Mayfield captured the NABO super lightweight crown two years ago by defeating Patrick Lopez.
In 2012, Mayfield easily defeated Mauricio Herrera, the same fighter who gave WBC and WBA super lightweight champion Danny “Swift”Garcia fits last weekend. Mayfield, along with a number of boxing writers and fans, felt that Herrera should have been awarded the decision.
"I thought Herrera pulled off the victory against Garcia because he landed more punches and was the aggressor for most of the fight,” Mayfield said in a press release.
“The fact that I dominated Herrera and he got the world title opportunity means there's something wrong. I've been calling Danny Garcia out for the last couple of years but he's been running from me because I put it on him when he brought me in camp.
“I'll beat the brakes off Garcia if we ever fight. First I have to take care of Dulorme, and that is where my one hundred percent focus is right now."
Mayfield, 33, is thrilled to have former Trainer of the Year Virgil Hunter running his corner for the Dulorme fight.
"Virgil and I have been working together since I was in the amateurs,” said Mayfield. “He knows how to push me to bring out the best in my fighting style. Ben Bautista is also helping out. Virgil has some of the best fighters in the world working out at his gym so I'm getting the best sparring possible.
“Virgil has got me working on some new punches that I'll display against Dulorme. Together I have a great corner guiding me to the top, “Mayfield added.
The twenty-four-year-old Dulorme, who resides in Carolina, Puerto Rico, has been working with another former Trainer of the Year, Robert Garcia.
"I've been here training with Robert Garcia in Oxnard, Californian for the last eight weeks,” Dulorme said. “He's a tremendous coach and I'm learning a lot about myself and what I need to improve on. There is always room for growth and Garcia is bringing the best out of me.
“I've been getting great sparring and I'll be one-hundred-percent ready for Mayfield's awkward style."
Dulorme has been much more active than Mayfield (eight fights in the past two years). He’ll also have a height and reach advantage of three inches.
Mayfield isn’t concerned.
"Dulorme is a technical guy with a long jab who has some fast hands," said Mayfield. “He’s nothing special though. I've seen him get knocked out before so I know his chin is suspect. I've fought guys who are long and rangy just like him so I'm confident in my ability to land some powerful shots.
“If I touch that chin of his, there's no doubt, he's getting knocked out."
Dulorme respects Mayfield but is ready to teach the San Francisco, California native a lesson.
"Mayfield is a great fighter, but he's never faced the type of punches that I'll be throwing at him. I possess speed and power unlike any of Mayfield's past opponents. I know he thinks he's unbeatable, but I will prove him wrong."
Mayfield knows that one more victory will put him in line for a shot at one of the super lightweight belt holders.
"This is a big opportunity to prove I'm one of the top fighters in the division,” Mayfield said. “This is the type of fight the fans are seeking, two guys at the top of their game who are hungry to prove they're great.”
The Karim Mayfield vs. Thomas Dulorme 10-round bout for the NABF Super Lightweight title, will take place on the undercard of Sergey Kovalev (23-0-1, 21 KOs) vs. Cedric Agnew (26-0, 13 KOs).
Both fights will be televised live on HBO Boxing After Dark® beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT