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Five Potential Opponents For Alexander Povetkin

If Not Whyte, Then Who?

By Jake Adkins   - @jakeadkinsport

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With his outstanding knockout of Dillian Whyte this past weekend, Alexander Povetkin catapulted himself straight back into title contention. The political climate at the top of the heavyweight division is a difficult one to navigate around at the best of times, so as it stands, it isn’t clear who will be the resurgent Russian’s foe next time he steps into the squared circle. Here, we have shortlisted five possible bouts “Sacha” could find himself in next time he fights. 

1. Dillian Whyte Rematch. 

Povetkin & his team signed a contract to fight Dillian Whyte and in that contract was a rematch clause. Rematch clauses are very rarely used in title-eliminators and are invoked even more rarely when the finish to the original encounter is as decisive as this one was. This speaks to how game Whyte is, the very next morning “The Bodysnatcher” was calling for the rematch to be made before the end of the year. The confidence in Povetkin must be sky high going into a potential rematch due to the nature of last weekend’s knockout and he is technically contractually obliged to take the fight. He is said to be open to running it back, but Team Povetkin apparently want to take the fight to Russia, which may pose a stumbling block. 

2. Tyson Fury 

Beating Dillian Whyte meant that Povetkin picked up both the interim WBC Title and the WBC Diamond belt, therefor securing himself as Tyson Fury’s next challenger in line with the WBC. With a potential Deontay Wilder trilogy fight in the midst as well as the obvious potential superfight with Unified Champion Anthony Joshua still in play, there may be some stumbling blocks in the way of Fury-Povetkin, but it isn’t out of the realms of possibility due to Povetkin’s favorable standing with the WBC. 

3. Dereck Chisora 

For months now it has looked as if Dereck Chisora was destined to challenge the division’s dark horse in Oleksandr Usyk but the longer negotiations drag on, the more likely it is the Finchley prizefighter will turn his attention elsewhere. Povetkin’s team and Matchroom seem to have a healthy relationship so it could be possible to see these two in the ring together, especially if the Whyte rematch doesn’t materialise and Povetkin is made to wait for the Champions. 

4. Deontay Wilder 

In a fight that is years in the making, Deontay Wilder taking on Alexander Povetkin is entirely possible. There has been very little word from Deontay Wilder’s camp as to whether or not he will take the trilogy against Fury, failure to make that fight would leave Wilder with no other fight and a good standing with the WBC. Should Fury and Joshua meet, this will leave both heavyweights left over. The fight that was scheduled to take place in Russia in 2016 was postponed after failed drug tests from the then-challenger derailed the bout, meaning another chance at victory over Wilder in 2020 would give Povetkin a chance at redemption over that part of his career. 

5. Michael Hunter rematch. 

In what was an extremely entertaining bout, Povetkin had to whether an early storm from the younger, fresher, American to slowly claw the rounds back to earn himself a draw. Hunter is so often thrown into the “Who Needs Him?” club but is undoubtedly a top 10 talent. Povetkin has never been one to shy away from a difficult fight, so if it comes to it and he has no title fight or contractual rematch to undertake, fight fans shouldn’t put it past Povetkin to take the very risky rematch that will be waiting for him in Hunter.