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Artur Beterbiev vs. Marcus Browne ordered by WBC

Artur Beterbiev

By Max Schramm: Artur Beterbiev has been ordered to defend his WBC light heavyweight title against #1 Marcus Browne. Mauricio Sulaiman, the WBC president, told ESPN that Beterbiev (16-0, 16 KOs) has been ordered to defend his belt against the 2012 U.S Olympian Browne (24-1, 16 KOs).

Beterbiev has got the punching power to give Browne many problems in this fight if the American elects to slug it out with him.

Browne has got the type of boxing skills to give the two-time Russian Olympian Beterbiev something to think about if he can’t bang him out like he’s done with the 16 opponents he’s faced during his eight-year professional career.

The hard-hitting Browne is coming off a lopsided 10 round unanimous decision over journeyman Denis Grachev last April in Los Angeles, California.

If the fight takes place, this will be an interesting one involving two Olympians. Browne, 30, has excellent boxing skills and power, but he was surprisingly beaten by Jean Pascal by an eight round technical decision two years ago in August 2019. Pascal dropped Browne three times in the fight.

In Beterbiev’s last fight, he successfully defended his IBF belt against Adam Deines by winning a 10th round knockout last March.

Beterbiev was coming off injuries, COVID-19, and a long 1 1/2 year layoff going into that fight. That might explain why Beterbiev looked sluggish and not nearly as impressive as he’d been in his two previous fights against Oleksandr Gvozdyk and Radivoje Kalajdzic.

Artur Beterbiev

If that performance from Beterbiev was a product of him aging, he might have real problems on his hands against Browne because he’s got the boxing skills to give the Russian fighter fits if he’s lost a few steps.

You’ve got to assume that Beterbiev’s punching power is still as good as ever, which gives him an excellent chance of stopping Browne if he can land his shots.

Against Pascal, Browne fell apart from the combination of speed and power from the Canadian fighter. Browne didn’t react well from the pressure that Pascal was putting him under, and he quickly crumbled, getting knocked down in the fourth and twice more in the seventh round.

The contest was halted in the eighth due to Browne suffering a bad cut over his left eye from a clash of heads. Had the cut not happened, Pascal looked like he was on the verge of knocking Browne out.

In Browne’s fight before that, he’d looked great, beating former two-division world champion Badou Jack by a 12 round unanimous decision in January 2019.

For Beterbiev to win this fight, he’s going to have to go after Browne and look to knock him out because he will get outboxed if he doesn’t get to him. Browne is the type of fighter that will keep the action on the outside if he’s a guy with power, and one can’t imagine he’ll want to take any chances against a puncher like Beterbiev.

Beterbiev must keep winning as long as possible because Canelo Alvarez is expected to move up to the 175-lb division if he’s successfully defeating IBF super middleweight champion Caleb Plant on November 6th in their undisputed championship bout.

According to promoter Eddie Hearn, Beterbiev is a fighter that Canelo is interested in facing once he moves up to 175. The money that Beterbiev can make fighting Canelo is huge, and that’s why he can’t afford to lose to a pure boxer like Marcus Browne.

“WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman tells ESPN he’s ordered a light heavyweight title fight between Artur Beterbiev and Marcus Browne. Beterbiev, ESPN’s No. 1 175-pound boxer, holds two titles. Browne is our No. 10 light heavyweight,” said @MikeCoppinger.




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