Fight Povetkin in Russia or Vacate? Deontay's Choice

BY The Sweet Science ON February 26, 2016
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WBC World Heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder finds himself with a decision to make.  Earlier today, Russian promoter Andrey Ryabinsky submitted the winning purse bid to secure the rights to promote Wilder's next fight, against Alexander Povetkin.  His bid was reported to be in excess of $7 million, topping rival bidder Lou DiBella's offer of roughly $5 million.

Wilder has been looking at Povetkin as his mandatory challenger for the WBC belt, and after Wilder took a few softer title defenses, it appeared as if the two would finally meet.

We last saw Wilder stop Artur Szpilka this past January. In the post-fight press conferences, Wilder expressed that it was time for Povetkin to fight in the United States. Wilder was clear that he did not want to go to Russia to fight Povetkin, even quipping "it's too cold in Russia" at one point. Wilder has not changed his public stance since.

Wilder has already passed on Povetkin's mandatory challenge, making three title defenses since winning the belt in January of 2015. To do so again would mean being stripped of the belt by the WBC. One way to avoid being stripped is to vacate the title, and ominously, Povetkin's team stated that they feared that Wilder would do just that. Obviously, Povetkin and company were comfortable that Ryabinksy and his deep pockets would come through at today's purse bid.

Wilder however, may want to reconsider the idea of fighting in Russia. The amount put in by Ryabinsky means that Wilder will make no less than $4 million dollars for the fight. Wilder would clear $5 million with a win. That would certainly represent the biggest payday of Wilder's career, and it is a lot more than he can make fighting anyone else. If he were to vacate the WBC title and choose to go his own way, he would certainly make a lot less money for his next fight.

Wilder's last fight was on Showtime and the live event was at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.  Though the fight was televised and the live event saw Wilder headlining New York City, it was still considered something more akin to a first appearance on that stage for Wilder. DiBella, Showtime and an array of people interested in keeping the WBC belt around Wilder's waist fell short on their purse bid by more than $2 million dollars. This tells us that while Wilder is the WBC Heavyweight Champion, he is nowhere near the drawing card or household name commanded by American heavyweight world titlists of the past.

So Wilder is now in a position where in order to keep the WBC belt, he may have to fight in Russia. Though the value of the "alphabet soup" belts is low in this day and age, Wilder's rise to national and international stature as a boxer is deeply tied to the WBC belt. Would he really vacate the belt to avoid fighting in Russia?

 

 

 

Comment on this article

deepwater2 says:

We discussed this awhile ago on here. Wilder is a paper champ, manufactured by the PVC outfit. He fights guys outside the top 50.

Wilder will not go to Russia. Maybe PVC will show their plastic belt to the world after DW ducks The Russian.

7 million is peanuts . We would of expected Deep pockets Haymon to come thru for his man.

If wilder goes to Russia with love he deserves all the respect in the world. That said, the paper champ will not go to Russia.

miguel1 says:

It is an interesting spot for Wilder. 7 million isnt a ton a money, but it has to be double what he made for his last fight, I would guess.

So, he vacates or is stripped. Why would Fury touch him next? What other fight could he make even comparable money to $4mill or so? Really without that flimsy paper belt, he would be on the Chris Arreola circuit.

deepwater2 says:

DW made good money fighting bums in his last two.

DW was mistaken for a nets basketball player instead of a boxer ,multiple times at Barclays.

Fury traveled to hostile territory to get his title. Will DW travel? If he did ,he would get respect. Let's hear the bs from the bomb squad as the details emerge.

Radam G says:

The bum -- I mean the bomb -- squad may as well become known as the bytch-out squad. Because that is what D-Wild will like do. He is on record saying that he will not go to "cold @$$ Russia." Nuff said! Holla!

Bernie Campbell says:

I believe you guys are too,hard,on the best her champ there's been since Lennox Lewis. Wilder is no stranger to Moscow. He fought and beat former cruiserweight champ raheem chakakiev,in the,amateures. Wilder will become the toast of the,hammer and sickle after he beats povetkin. He will gain alot of atheletic supporters. Nasterovia.

Kid Blast says:

When Alexander “Sasha” Povetkin stopped giant Pole Mariusz “The Viking” Wach, it just might have been a precursor for a Povetkin-Wilder fight given Wach’s height of 6’7½”. The globe-trotting Wach had won four straight against okay opposition since being badly butchered by Wladimir Klitschko in November 2112.

The broad-shouldered Povetkin, a huge hero in Russia (and one of my personal favorites) and former WBA World heavyweight champion, has won three in a row since being beaten by a holding and mugging Klitschko in 2013. The combined record of Povetkin’s last three opponents coming in was 77-3-2. Many of his earlier opponents came in either undefeated or with just one loss. He is a physically strong, hard hitting, and skilled pressure fighter who blends boxing ferocity with humility outside the ring. Adding to his charisma, or mystique if you will, Povetkin has declared himself a rodnover and wears a Perun axe necklace and has the star of Rus tattoo.

Sasha won the world title, as well as Athens Olympic gold, and finished 125-7 as an amateur with all his losses avenged. He also has worked out with Russian leader Vladimir Putin and was wanted by all of the world’s top promoters when he turned professional. At 35, he is now at a point where it is make or break for him in terms of becoming heavyweight champion and a crossover star, and if he meets WBC champion Deontay Wilder, I believe the Russian should be the slight favorite if and when it happens.

A Wilder-Povetkin fight would be mega in an era filled with big ones, especially if it is fought in Moscow..

stormcentre says:

When Alexander “Sasha” Povetkin stopped giant Pole Mariusz “The Viking” Wach, it just might have been a precursor for a Povetkin-Wilder fight given Wach’s height of 6’7½”. The globe-trotting Wach had won four straight against okay opposition since being badly butchered by Wladimir Klitschko in November 2112.

The broad-shouldered Povetkin, a huge hero in Russia (and one of my personal favorites) and former WBA World heavyweight champion, has won three in a row since being beaten by a holding and mugging Klitschko in 2013. The combined record of Povetkin’s last three opponents coming in was 77-3-2. Many of his earlier opponents came in either undefeated or with just one loss. He is a physically strong, hard hitting, and skilled pressure fighter who blends boxing ferocity with humility outside the ring.

Adding to his charisma, or mystique if you will, Povetkin has declared himself a rodnover and wears a Perun axe necklace and has the star of Rus tattoo.

Sasha won the world title, as well as Athens Olympic gold, and finished 125-7 as an amateur with all his losses avenged. He also has worked out with Russian leader Vladimir Putin and was wanted by all of the world’s top promoters when he turned professional. At 35, he is now at a point where it is make or break for him in terms of becoming heavyweight champion and a crossover star, and if he meets WBC champion Deontay Wilder, I believe the Russian should be the slight favorite if and when it happens.

A Wilder-Povetkin fight would be mega in an era filled with big ones, especially if it is fought in Moscow..


Forget the Perun axe necklaces and Star of Russia tattoo.

I won't respect Pov's gig until he unifies all titles, loses more weight around his Vodka loving belly (or else changes his boxing alias to "PorkyBalboa"), and gets both;

[INDENT]A) "Thrill seeker" tattooed across his forehead.

B) And, both "good" and "night" respectively inked on each left and right eyelid.
[/INDENT]

Love it !!!!


Good post KB.

You're right, Povetkin is (a little too) easy to underestimate/forget.




Storm.


PS: Tell our Rusky PorkyBalboa to leave Judy alone and stop pimping on her - she's all mine !!!!



[video=youtube;LnLB4NLdH8w]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LnLB4NLdH8w[/video]

Kid Blast says:

Geezus!

Shoulder Roll Defense says:

What are some of you going to say when Wilder defeats Povetkin? Povetkin was a bum and is 35, thus past his prime? Is Wilder a all-time great? No he isn't, but with the current state of the heavyweight division he could conceivably defeat anyone. Power, size, and a little ring intelligence will take Bronze Bomber very far. Mark my words, he will defeat Povetkin.

Kid Blast says:

He very well might if he connects with one of his rights and if he does I will give him full credit. But I would never, ever refer to Povetkin as a "bum."

deepwater2 says:

Wilder will get credit from me for just taking the fight. If Wilder wins he will have proved his critics ,like me, wrong.

The Russian is far from a bum and if you google his training right now, you will see that the man is ripped and already training.

Radam G says:

What are some of you going to say when Wilder defeats Povetkin? Povetkin was a bum and is 35, thus past his prime? Is Wilder a all-time great? No he isn't, but with the current state of the heavyweight division he could conceivably defeat anyone. Power, size, and a little ring intelligence will take Bronze Bomber very far. Mark my words, he will defeat Povetkin.


If D-Wild fights Povetkin and beats him, I will say, "oh syet I gotta eat some crow. SRD is da MAN, you know!"

Nevertheless, I double doubt that D-Wild will arise to that occasion. He cannot handle that work. Holla!

Domenic says:

I think Wilder has a chance (although MUCH less in Russia). He should've dealt with AP on his own terms, a fight or two ago, rather than now being forced to face a dangerous guy in the Iron Curtain. It's almost like a prosecutor not presenting evidence that hurts his own case, even though he knows the defense will put it in and thus it looks like he tried to hide it. Wilder had to know AP was inevitable, now he's stuck dealing with the guy on hostile ground. I thought Wilder would have an even money chance on home turf. AP was putrid against Klitschko, one of the worst performances at heavyweight in recent years in a big fight. He will lose all credibility by NOT going to Russia. He has to and it's all of his own making. What he needs to do is perform admirably, and even if he loses, then he's still in the mix and will gain respect.

Kid Blast says:

"...a dangerous guy in the Iron Curtain" is a very dangerous guy.

brownsugar says:

I think Wilder has a chance (although MUCH less in Russia). He should've dealt with AP on his own terms, a fight or two ago, rather than now being forced to face a dangerous guy in the Iron Curtain. It's almost like a prosecutor not presenting evidence that hurts his own case, even though he knows the defense will put it on, and thus it looks like he tried to hide it. Wilder had to know AP was inevitable, now he's stuck dealing with the guy on hostile ground. I thought Wilder would've had an even money chance on home turf. AP was putrid against Klitschko, one of the worst performances at heavyweight in recent years in a big fight. He will lose all credibility by NOT going to Russia. He has to and it's all of his own making. What he needs to do is perform admirably, and even if he loses, then he's still in the mix and will gain respect. We'll see though. Things heating up in the heavyweight division, such a beautiful thing.


In an interview Wilder gave about a month ago when asked if he'd drop the belt rather than go to Russia, Wilder replied, "I'm trying to win the belts not forfeit them,... How can I win all the belts if I keep give them up as soon as I get them?"

Apparently Wilder meant what he said as his latest response to lossing the purse bid is.......
he would fight in Russia if necessary.

This good news although I'm shocked to hear it. We may have a fight after all.

Or is it because Fury called him a big "pu**y" ?

I personally don't care why, I just know it's a fight I wanna see.

Bernie Campbell says:

Too much deceptive promotion in boxing, too much poops.

Chris L says:

He should just chuck the belt in the bin anyway it means nothing.

miguel1 says:

Word is hitting out there that Deontay has accepted going to Russia. Those who doubted that he would take that challenge are wrong. But will they be wrong come fight time?

I am glad he did it. Povetkin as champion is a risk of making the division boring again, but Fury and Parker and Joshua could all be faced with HUGE money offers from Russian promoters.

deepwater2 says:

Word is hitting out there that Deontay has accepted going to Russia. Those who doubted that he would take that challenge are wrong. But will they be wrong come fight time?

I am glad he did it. Povetkin as champion is a risk of making the division boring again, but Fury and Parker and Joshua could all be faced with HUGE money offers from Russian promoters.


If DW goes to Russia he deserves some respect. Let's see.

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