Beterbiev-Maderna make weight
(Photo credit: Dave Nadkarni/Premier Boxing Champions) By Jim Dower: Undefeated light heavyweight contender Artur Beterbiev (9-0, 9 KOs) and Ezequiel Maderna (23-2, 15 KOs) both made weight on Friday for their fight on Saturday night on Premier Boxing Champions on ESPN from the Bell Center in Montreal, Canada. Beterbiev weighed in at 174.2lbs. Maderna, 29, weighed in at 177.2lbs.
Beterbiev twice fought in the Olympics for Russia in 2008 and 2012, but failed to bring home the gold in both Olympics. Beterbiev was eliminated by Zhang Xiaoping by an 8-2 score in the 2008 Olympics at light heavyweight, and to Oleksandr Usyk of Ukraine by 17-13 score in the 2012 Olympics in competing at heavyweight.
Beterbiev didn’t have the frame to be fighting at heavyweight, and it’s surprising he was able to do as well as he did in the fight with Usyk. In both cases, Beterbiev lost to fighters that went on to capture gold medals in the 2008 and 2012 Olympics.
It’s still hard to know how good the 31-year-old Beterbiev is at this point because he’s not fought anyone of note since turning pro in 2013. Beterbiev has wins over Jeff Page, Tavoris Cloud, Gabriel Campillo, and Woody Johnson. Page knocked Beterbiev own in their fight in 2014. However, it was a flash knockdown rather than a true knockdown. Beterbieg got back to his feet and went on to score a 2nd round knockout.
The biggest concern for Beterbiev is the ring rust, as he’s been out of the ring for a year since his fight against Johnson in June 2015. Beterbiev has been dealing with a shoulder problem with his right shoulder. It took him this long to come back from the injury, and he feels he can be ready to return to the ring after rehabbing his shoulder for a year.
Maderna is a good enough fighter to give the boxing world a chance to see whether Beterbiev has the talent to compete against the likes of Sergey Kovalev, who he beat in the amateur ranks. If Beterbiev struggles to beat Maderna, then you have to assume that he’d lose to Kovalev if and when he faces him in the future.
We could see Beterbiev facing WBC light heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson first in a fight that will likely take place in 2017. Beterbiev is ranked #4 with the World Boxing Council. If he beats Stevenson, then he’d move forward and fight Kovalev in a unification match. Beterbiev handled Kovalev will when they were in the Russian amateur system.
Other weights on the card:
Bryant Perrella 146.4 vs. David Grayton 145.6
Javier Franco 121.8 vs. Vislan Dalkaev 121.4
Balasz Horvath 169.8 vs. Dario Bredicean 167.6
Parnell Fisher 123 vs. Larami Carmona 122.6
Jeremy Bates 246.2 vs. Oscar Rivas 240.8