Wilder v Povetkin will show us who is best of the rest
By Gav Duthie: He didn’t need to prove anything to me but hopefully Alexander Povetkin 29-1 (21) has shown he is at present the second best heavyweight on the planet. The Russian took just 91 seconds to dispatch the normally durable Cuban Mike Perez. I had Povetkin as one of my top 5 boxers of 2014 and he has started 2015 just as brightly.
It is rare for a fighter to recover so well after a demoralizing loss to Wladimir Klitschko but Povetkin has surely climbed back up to the best of the rest status. Perhaps most importantly this win gives him mandatory status for the WBC title held by Deontay Wilder 33-0 (22). If Wilder wants to prove himself as good enough to unify the division then Povetkin is a huge test along the way.
The credit he deserves
The heavyweight division is the worst in all of boxing for over-hyped padded records. Wilder has had 3 more fights than Povetkin yet his only top name win has been Bermane Stiverne. Contrast that to the Russian who boasts wins over world champions Chris Byrd, Ruslan Chagaev, Marko Huck and Hasim Rahman as well as top contenders such as Cedric Boswell, Eddie Chambers, Manuel Charr, Carlos Takam and now Mike Perez. Despite a willingness to always fight the best he doesn’t get enough credit.
WBC by end of year
Hopefully the WBC order this fight to take place before the end of 2015 so we don’t see Wilder face anymore bowling pins like Eric Molina. This is not a Wilder bashing piece I am quite sure he wants to face Povetkin he has tweeted as much after the fight. Wilder like most fighters want to face the best. My worry is will Al Haymon won’t put him in with the dangerous Russian. Haymon has already flirted with the idea of dismissing world titles but nobody wants to see guys like Molina anywhere near world title fights. If a fight between Wilder and Povetkin was made I am not sure who would win the purse bids. Povetkin is popular in Russia and his management could offer a big fee. America needs heavyweight boxing at home though.
Heavyweight is still king
The ratings for Wilder-Stiverne and Klitschko-Jennings shows that good heavyweight boxing is still the most popular section of boxing in the U.S. The Povetkin knockout of Perez shows high. Fans don’t want to see 80% of top fights finish with the judges scorecards where at heavyweight one punch can change it all.
Wilder v Povetkin
At the moment I would have to pick Povetkin to win. His experience is vast and fighting the likes of Molina will not help Wilder prepare. Wilder will have the advantage in power but Povetkin has an excellent chin. Povetkin also has the advantage in ring smarts especially counter punching. Wilder uses his range well but if that is threatened he just circles and moves back, Povetkin will pose all sorts of problems that Wilder won’t be prepared for especially with a non-test like Molina. Whatever happens I’m looking forward to it.
Povetkin By KO 8-10
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