The 2008 Olympic Gold medal hero will take on the unbeaten American for the right to face the winner of Carl Froch and George Groves, as the Brit rivals do battle on the same night in a rematch for Froch’s WBA and IBF belts.
DeGale is on the cusp of his first World title challenge but the 28 year old knows Gonzales brings a great threat from across the pond, and the Londoner is delighted to be facing the 29 year old at the national stadium in his first fight with new promoter Eddie Hearn.
“I’m back and I’m back big,” said DeGale. “The last year or so has been frustrating but that’s all in the past and the future is looking extremely bright.
“The fights out there for me are crazy. But I can’t look past Brandon, he trains with Andre Ward and Amir Khan so he’s got great training and he’s a good fighter, he can do a lot of things well so I cannot overlook him. I need these massive fights to motivate me to perform at my best and I feel energised and I cannot wait until May 17 to show the best James DeGale.
“I’m not fussed who wins out of Carl and George. I think Carl is an easier fight as he is made for me, but with George and I it is personal – I get angry talking about him. I’m ready for whoever is there but I’m concentrating on Brandon Gonzales.”
“We’re delighted to welcome James to the Matchroom Boxing team,” said Hearn. “There was a huge amount of interest from a number of promoters to add him to their roster, so I am delighted to win that race. The timing of the fight against Brandon Gonzales couldn’t be better with the winner set to face the winner of Froch vs. Groves 2.
“The 168 pound division is buzzing and this just adds a new dimension to the potential of mega-fights for British boxing.”