Former WBA World heavyweight champion Alexander Povetkin (30-1, 22 KOs) is reportedly negotiating to face WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder, but the 36-year-old Russian is already thinking about his next fight after facing the champion.
Traditionally, a defending champion is the one who would be thinking past his next opponent. But according to Vadim Pushkin of Boxing Scene, Povetkin wants to face WBA/WBO champion Tyson Fury, IBF titleholder Charles Martin, and former heavyweight kingpin Wladimir Klitschko a second time.
Obviously, if Povetkin beats Wilder, he’d have a fourth of the world heavyweight titles. Judging by the fighters on his wish list, he wants to unify the belts. Povetkin insists, however, that it’s not about titles but more about facing the top competition.
He lost a one-sided unanimous decision to Klitschko in October 2013. He was down four times in the fight. Despite the results of that bout and Klitschko‘s recent dethroning as king of the division, Povetkin still wants to avenge his lone professional loss.
“The desire to rematch with Klitschko is not lost. I hope that our destinies come together and we get the opportunity to face him again—even if he doesn’t have the titles. You know, I was never hung up on titles. I always want to box the best.”
It’s debatable whether or not Klitshcko would still be considered “the best.” After Fury clearly outboxed him en route to a unanimous-decision win in October 2015, Klitschko’s star has lost a bit of its luster. Thus it makes sense that Povetkin is still eyeing the current titleholders.
“Fury is an interesting boxer, unorthodox. So of course that fight would be very interesting to me. He is the best at the moment and I have a desire to fight the best. With respect to Charles Martin, he is the champion of the world, so of course I’m interested. My promoters make the deals; I do not care who I fight. Just give me a date and I’ll be ready anywhere.”
Povetkin’s willingness to fight the division’s best is admirable, but he might want to devote his time and energy to the 6’7”, hard-punching WBC champion who will be looking to put him to sleep when the two men meet in the ring. Wilder is not the kind of opponent anyone can afford to look past.
This article was penned by the author who is not related to the WBA and the statements, expressions or opinions referenced herein are that of the author alone and not the WBA.