What’s Next For Beterbiev?
Unified champion Artur Beterbiev did what was expected on Saturday night in Moscow and retained his WBC and IBF belts by stoping Adam Deines over ten rounds in Moscow. For Beterbiev (16-0, 16 KOs), it becomes a wait-and-see process now as to who he will take on next in the ring, wherever it is the winner of the Joe Smith Jr.-Maxim Vlasov and Dimitri Bivol-Craig Richards fights.
“Yes, we are interested in a unification fight for one of the titles. It does not matter against whom. Either it will be the winner of the Bivol-Richards fight or the winner of the Vlasov-Smith fight,” said Beterbiev’s head trainer, Marc Ramsey.
SLO-MO REPLAY ? The perfect left hand that ended it. ?
Artur Beterbiev remains the unified Light Heavyweight champ … and a terrifying force, in general. pic.twitter.com/SnilI0CArd
— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) March 21, 2021
Bivol’s promoter, Andrei Ryabinsky of World of Boxing, says a fight with Beterbiev is possible in the future.
“This kind of fight can be organized,” Ryabinsky said to Tass.
“It’s not very good that both are Russian boxers [and have to fight] because there is always someone else to fight with. But given that this is a unification fight, sooner or later, their paths would have crossed.”
So with the options being the winner of Smith/Vlasov or Bivol/Richards, safe to assume that we’ll see for Beterbiev the Smith-Vlasov winner as both fighters are under the Top Rank banner. That bout for the vacant WBO title at 175 will be settled on April 10 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Another name being tossed out is, of course, Canelo Alvarez, as anyone within the pound-for-pound champ is always going to name-dropped and was a former champion at light heavy. That seems less likely as he is in action taking on Billy Joe Saunders on May 8 in Dallas, Texas.
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