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Erkan Teper vs. Robert Helenius on December 19th in Helsinki, Finland

Robert HeleniusBy Tim Fletcher: EBU heavyweight champion Erkan Teper (15-0, 10 KOs) will be making a dangerous title defense on December 19th against the unbeaten 6’6” Robert “The Nordic Nightmare” Helenius (21-0, 13 KOs), according to Fight News, in a bout at the Hartwall Arena in Helsinki, Finland.

Helenius, 31, has lost the high ranking that he once had in 2013 due to inactivity. Helenius didn’t fight from March 2013 to March 2015 due to promotional issues. He finally came back in March of this year and has beaten Andras Csomor and Beqa Lobjanidze.

Helenius looked good in both of those fights, but he was facing weak opposition. In the past, Helenius has looked really poor in fighting guys like Dereck Chisora, Michael Sprott, Siarhei Liakhovich and Sherman Williams.

The win over Chisora was a questionable one for Helenius with a lot of boxing fans feeling that Chisora had done more than enough to deserve a victory in their fight in December 2011. Helenius hurt his hand in that fight, but he never looked good at all even in the early rounds. Chisora had his number and was arguably robbed in a fight that took place in Helsinki.

Teper, 33, recently captured the vacant European Boxing Union heavyweight crown last July in stopping the 6’8” David Price in the 2nd round in a fight that took place in Germany. Teper dropped Price hard in the 2nd round with a combination, and Price was unable to get back up to his feet.

The hard hitting Teper defeated Johann Duhaupas by a 12 round unanimous decision in March of 2015 to capture the vacant IBF Inter-Continental heavyweight title. It was a fight in which Teper won by the scores of 116-111, 115-112 and 116-111. Teper also has 1st round knockouts over Michael Sprott and Martin Rogan.

Teper, 6’5”, 250lbs, has the chin, the heavy hands and the size to give Helenius a great deal of problems in this fight. If Helenius isn’t able to hurt Teper early in the fight, then I see this ending badly for him. Helenius was staggered by then 40-year-old journeyman Sherman Williams in a fight that took place in 2012 in Helsinki.

Helenius was given the victory by a 10 round unanimous decision, but the fight was a lot closer than the final scores would suggest. The judges scored the fight 99-91, 99-93, and 98-93 for Helenius. It was another poor effort from Helenius, and he was lucky to get the win because he was clearly hurt by Williams.

If Teper can handle Helenius’ power punches early in this fight then I see Teper scoring a stoppage by the 6th round. At 6’5”, Teper has the size to KO Helenius, and he’s got the better chin in my view. Helenius is too upright, and he seems run out of gas in the later rounds of his fights. Teper doesn’t fade. He’s able to keep fighting hard and throw with major power even in the few instances where he’s had to go the full distance to get the victory. If Helenius is still standing by the 6th round, he’s going to have a lot of problems with the stronger Teper in the second half of the fight.

Prediction: Teper by 6th round knockout. Teper will take the judges and the crowd out of the fight by battering Helenius and not letting it go to the scorecards.


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