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Hearn offers Povetkin fight on Anthony Joshua vs Joseph Parker card

By Tim Royner: #1 WBA Alexander Povetkin has been given an offer by Matchroom Sport promoter Eddie Hearn to fight on the undercard of Anthony Joshua vs. Joseph Parker on March 31 at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. Hearn wants Povetkin to fight a British heavyweight, and he’s talking of offering the fight to Dereck Chisora or David Price.

This isn’t an altogether altruistic move on Hearn’s part in offering the 38-year-old Povetkin (33-1, 23 KOs) a chance to fight on the Joshua-Parker undercard. Hearn expects the World Boxing Association to order Joshua to face Povetkin in the summer, and he sees that fight happening by December of this year.

If Povetkin fights on the undercard of the Joshua-Parker fight on March 31, it’ll help create interest from the British boxing public for the Joshua-Povetkin fight later this year.

He [Povetkin] might box on the card,” said Hearn to about Povetkin. ”We’ve offered it to Dereck Chisora and David Price. If Povetkin boxes on the card, it will be against a Brit.”

It would be very surprising if Price or Chisora accept the challenge to take on the 6’2”, 225 pound Povetkin. It’s a difficult fight for anyone in the heavyweight division to take, but it’s especially difficult for Price (22-4, 18 KOs) and Chisora. Those guys haven’t been looking good lately. The 34-year-old Price is still trying to rebuild his career following his knockout losses to Tony Thompson, Erkan Teper and Christian Hammer. Those were bad defeats for the 6’8” Price, and his career has evaporated because of them.

Price won his last fight against journeyman Kamil Sokolowski (4-11-2) last December, but he didn’t look good in that fight in being forced to go the full 6 round distance. In Price’s fight before that, he was knocked out in 7 rounds by Hammer. This is the same Hammer that Povetkin easily beat by a one-sided 12 round unanimous decision on December 15 in a WBA heavyweight title eliminator.

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For his part, Chisora (27-8, 19 KOs) lost his last fight to Agit Kabayel on November 4 in Monte Carlo. Chisora was badly out-boxed by Kabayel. That defeat was Chisora’s 3rd loss in his last 5 fights. To say that Chisora’s career is on the skids is putting it lightly. Chisora’s career is flatling right now. Hearn is doing Chisora no favors by offering him the Povetkin fight. Of course, if Chisora beats Povetkin, then Hearn will have gotten a dangerous fighter out of the hair of Joshua. Instead of Povetkin fighting Joshua, it’ll be Chisora.

“Povetkin is a good name, and a good heavyweight. And it gives a Brit a chance to be involved in a big fight,” said Hearn.

Povetkin has a loss to Wladimir Klitschko in 2013 in a one-sided 12 round decision. Povetkin had a chance to face WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder 2 years ago in 2016, but he tested positive for a banned drug, and that wiped out the fight. It might have been a good thing for Povetkin to miss out on that fight, as his chances of beating Wilder were not good. More importantly, the money that Povetkin would have received fighting Wilder wouldn’t likely have been as good as what he’ll get for his title shot against Joshua if he gets past WBO heavyweight champion Parker.

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