Artur Beterbiev vs Dmitry Bivol: Of course I want this fight/The sun/Boxing scene
The Russian WBC, WBO and IBF light heavyweight world champion usually answers questions about a fight with compatriot Dmitry Bivol for the undisputed title with nonchalance. But in a recent interview, Beterbiev was no longer his usual distance and gave a tough answer.
“Of course, of course I want this fight,” Beterbiev said of Bivol in an interview with iFL TV. “I want this fight.”
When asked if he had an opinion on Bivol possibly getting a rematch with Saul Canelo Alvarez later this year, Beterbiev went his usual route saying, “I’m not thinking about it.”
Beterbiev, who lives and trains in Montreal, Canada, is set to defend his three world light heavyweight championship belts against British mandatory challenger Anthony Yarde on Jan. 28 at Wembley Arena in London. If Beterbiev wins, there will likely be even more public pressure to set him up with Bivol.
However, there were significant promotion hurdles that prevented the fight from happening. Bivol is promoted by Matchroom, while Beterbiev is backed by Top Rank. So far, Matchroom and Top Rank are rivals and rarely do business together.
On top of that, and most importantly, both companies have their own respective networking agreements; Matchroom with the DAZN streaming platform, Top Rank with ESPN. Indeed, Top Rank chief Bob Arum has publicly stated that he would never allow a scenario where Beterbiev fights in an event promoted by Matchroom and broadcast by DAZN.
Even if Yarde beats Beterbiev to become world champion, the same political issues will remain, as Yarde’s promoter, Frank Warren of Queensberry (his partner at Top Rank), is a bitter rival to Hearn. Bivol, on the other hand, has publicly called for an undisputed title and insists he would prefer this opportunity to a rematch with Saul Canelo Alvarez.
Bivol beat the Mexican superstar by points last spring in a light heavyweight title fight.
Recently, Bivol expressed interest in fighting Alvarez in the 168 division for the chance to become the undisputed champion in a different division.
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