WBA, WBO, IBF & IBO Champ Oleksandr Usyk Speaks Out!

By Boxing News - 03/23/2022 - Comments

By Ken Hissner:  In looking at the current WBA, WBO, IBF, and IBO heavyweight champion southpaw Oleksandr Usyk’s amateur record, he was 335-15, of which www.boxrec.com shows 95-15 of those which I found some outstanding opponents he encountered representing his country of Ukraine.

Usyk at the 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist in the heavyweight division in London, UK, reversed a loss in the 2008 Olympics quarterfinals in Beijing, China, to the eventual Silver Medalist Clemente Russo of Italy, defeating him 14-11. Russo had defeated future WBC heavy champ Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder in the 2008 Olympics though losing to future 2-division world champ Andre “S.O.G.” Ward in the 2004 Olympics.

Usyk defeated future WBC Super Middleweight and WBC Light Heavyweight champion Badou “The Ripper” Jack of Sweden at the European championships in 2006 in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, only to lose in the semi-finals to Russia’s Matt Korobov. Later that year, at the World Cup in Baku, Azerbaijan, he again lost to Korobov.

In March of 2013, in London’s World Series of Boxing, Usyk defeated UK’s Joe “Juggernaut” Joyce, now 13-0 (12), as a pro. As part of that series in January, he defeated New Zealand’s Junior Fa, now 19-1 (10), in Kyiv, Ukraine. At those London Olympics, he defeated current WBC and IBF light heavyweight champion Russia’s Artur Beterbiev, now 17-0 (17), whom he lost to in a previous bout in 2007. In 2006 in a USA vs. Ukraine fight, he lost to future IBF and WBC welterweight champion Shawn “Showtime” Porter.

Usyk turned pro in 2013, winning his first minor title in his fifth fight defeating South Africa’s Daniel “Billy the Kid” Bruwer, 24-5-1, for the WBO Inter-Continental title in Ukraine. In his tenth fight, he won the WBO World Cruiserweight title defeating Poland’s Krzysztof “Glowka” Glowacki, 26-0, in Poland.

Image: WBA, WBO, IBF & IBO Champ Oleksandr Usyk Speaks Out!

Usyk defended his titles four times, stopping Thabiso Mchunu, 17-2, defeating Michael “The Bounty” Hunter, 12-0, and stopping Marco “Kapt’n” Huck, 40-4-1. In his fifth defense in a unification bout, he defeated WBC champion Latvia’s Mairis Briedis, 23-0, in Latvia.
Next, Usyk defeated IBF and WBA champion Russia’s Murat “Iron” Gassiev, 26-0, in Russia, to be the unified world cruiserweight champion. In his next fight, he stopped the UK’s Tony “The Bomber” Bellew, 30-2-1, in the UK.

Next in Chicago, Illinois, in his first heavyweight bout, Usyk defeated Chazz “The Gentleman” Witherspoon, 38-3.

Then back in the UK, he defeated Dereck “War” Chisora, 32-9, for the WBO Inter-Continental title. In his next and last fight in September of 2021, he moved up to heavyweight and defeated Anthony “AJ” Joshua, 24-1, for the WBO, WBA, and IBF world titles.

While waiting for a rematch with Joshua, Russia attacked Ukraine. He has been permitted to leave the country, but it hasn’t been decided what he will do as of this moment.

“I don’t want to shoot, I don’t want to kill anybody, but if they will be killing me, I will have no choice. Maybe it will sound sentimental, but my soul belongs to the Lord, and my body belongs to my country, to my family. So there is no fear, absolutely no fear. There’s just bafflement; how could this be in the 21st century?”

The 35-year-old Usyk is 19-0 with 13 stoppages, and if defeating Joshua in their rematch, he would look forward to unifying the heavyweight title like he did the cruiserweight title with WBC World champion UK’s Tyson “The Gypsy King” Fury, 31-0-1 with 22 stoppages. In April, Fury successfully defended his title against UK’s Dillian “The Body Snatcher” Whyte, 28-2, with 19 stoppages that would be for the unification of the heavyweight title.

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