Callum Smith on Artur Beterbiev: “He can be hurt”

By Boxing News - 05/22/2023 - Comments

By Charles Brun: Callum Smith believes he’s got the power to hurt IBF, WBC & WBO light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev to dethrone him when they meet up in August in Quebec.

The exact date and venue have yet to be decided, but the month and the location have been picked out. Callum (29-1, 21 KOs) thinks the 38-year-old Beterbiev (19-0, 19 KOs) has aged enough to where he can beat him.

Callum says he wants to capture Beterbiev’s three titles and then bring them back home to Liverpool to defend them in front of his fans. The 33-year-old Smith seems to have all mapped out in his head already how it’s going to play out against Beterrbiev.

Interestingly, he didn’t say anything about giving Beterbiev a rematch, so you have to assume that he’ll opt for a soft defense to ensure that he doesn’t lose the belts straightaway in front of his own fans.

Smith hasn’t beaten anyone at 175 that would give fans the confidence that he has a chance of dethroning a fighter of Beterbiev’s ability. In Smith’s two fights at light heavyweight, he’s beaten Lenin Castillo and Mathieu Bauderlique.  Those guys aren’t anywhere near the level of Beterbiev.

“I don’t got no problems traveling. It would obviously be nicer to get the fight but to gain control over it and wait to be given a date and wait to be given a venue, which is kind of out of my plans,”  said Callum Smith to iFL TV about his August title shot against IBF, WBC & WBO light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev in Quebec.

“It’s a fight I’ve wanted and a fight that I believe I win. The chance to win three world titles in one evening is exciting to me,” Callum continued about his title shot against the three-belt 175-lb champion Beterbiev.

“So regardless of where it is and when it is, it’s a fight I’m looking forward to. He’s a very good fighter. I got a lot of respect for him.  He’s a great champion, but he’s 38 years of age and isn’t the hardest to hit. Obviously, he hits hard himself, but he is there to be hit, and he can be hurt.

“I’m confident of my own abilities. I was a world champion once and was the best in the world at 168. I believe I’m better up at 175 and under my new training team.

“I believe styles make fights, and it’s a fight that I definitely can win. I wouldn’t be entering a final eliminator and calling for this fight just to make the numbers up. It’s a fight that I believe I can go over there, do a job and take his belts off him and come back home.

“That’s always the plan, even when I became world champion the first time around. Go back and defend it at home. Ideally, you’d like to win it back home, but if not, defend it.

“I’ve got a great following back in Liverpool and they deserve a big real-time champion in the home city. Hopefully, me and my brother can bring it back home this year,” said Callum.

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