Alexander Povetkin Says Now He's Ready For Klitschko. But Is He?

by James Slater - Fresh off his decent, if less than impressive points win over Jason "Big-Six" Estrada at the weekend, unbeaten 29-year-old heavyweight contender Alexander Povetkin has spoken about how he now feels he is ready to take on IBF and WBO heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko, the fighter he won an IBF eliminator to earn the right to face. Coming back after a nine month layoff that was forced upon him due to a very serious ankle injury, the Russian star weighed-in at a career heaviest 230-pounds for the bout against Estrada..

Blowing by the middle rounds as a result of the ring rust he was carrying and his excess weight, Povetkin nonetheless got a good 'rust-remover' of a workout under his belt courtesy of an Estrada who was game and make him fight for the full ten rounds. Speaking after the unanimous decision victory, Povetkin and Kalle Sauerland said how the now 17-0(12) contender is ready for his fight with "Dr. Steel Hammer." But is he?

A better question may actually be, will Povetkin ever be ready for Klitschko, but that's a different story. Not a huge heavyweight by any means, Povetkin has yet to fight a really big guy. Also, he's never met a really big puncher as a pro. Okay, he may feel that at age 29 he will not get much better and it is time now to strike and go for the title, but wouldn't one more or maybe two more wins over big guys, somewhere in the region of the 240-pound mark, better prepare him for the huge Klitschko?

Thus far, Povetkin, himself 6'2" and approx 225, has met only smaller sized heavyweights, such as Chris Byrd, Eddie Chambers, Larry Donald and Estrada. Aside from the somewhat flabby Patrice L'Heureux and the then 37-11-1 David Bostice - neither of who are real world class - Povetkin has met no man approaching the dimensions of the younger, 6'6.5" and approx 245-pound Klitschko brother. Maybe he should do so.

Chris Arreola and his team are doing the right thing in taking on the massive Jameel McCline this coming Saturday. With a shot at Vitali Klitschko's WBC belt being a distinct possibility for the future, "The Nightmare" and his team chose to take a fight with a man close to "Dr Iron Fist's" Size and weight. Until a smaller fighter has been in with and felt the physical strength of a real giant, not to mention worked out how to deal with his advantage in reach, he has next to no idea about how it will feel when he does so.

For all the good, but smallish heavies Povetkin has defeated, the Olympic gold medallist has not shown he can handle himself against a real monster.

At 29 Povetkin has time on his side, six more months would not hurt, and he would stand to gain a better chance of dethroning Klitschko if he boxed a real big guy before going for the title. What do you guys think?

Article posted on 06.04.2009

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