Devon Alexander-Andriy Kotelnik Set For August 7th In Saint Louis

by James Slater - It has been officially announced that light-welterweights Devon Alexander and Andriy Kotelnik will meet in Alexander's home town of Saint Louis on August 7th. The fight, unbeaten Alexander's first defence of his IBF and WBC titles, will go out live on HBO.

Kotelnik, the older man by nine years at age 32 and also a former holder of the WBA 140-pound title, has reportedly signed a multi-fight deal with promoter Don King, and the first bout of the deal will be the clash with the unbeaten southpaw..

Kotelnik, of course, lost his WBA belt to Britain's Amir Khan last year, but during his title reign the Ukrainian picked up a most impressive win over the lethal-punching Marcos Maidana. This win, along with a number of others, proves how good Kotelnik, 31-3-1(13) can be, and it will be interesting to see how he bounces back from the July 2009 points loss he suffered at the hands of Khan (a points loss Kotelnik disputes to this day).

Alexander, 20-0(13) will naturally start out favourite, being as he is looked at as a possible star of the future, seeing as he will be boxing at home and seeing as he is the much younger man. Kotelnik, though, a former Olympic silver medallist as well as a former professional champion, could give "Alexander The Great" his toughest fight yet, at least from a technical standpoint.

Neither man is what you would call a massive puncher (although Alexander did manage to halt the hitherto unstoppable Juan Urango last time out - back in March, when he added the IBF 140-pound strap to his WBC crown) and a distance fight looks a good bet. Both men are good, solid boxers, yet Alexander is faster and due to his youth and recent activity level he will likely be sharper. Indeed, how will the year-and-a-month of inactivity he has had affect Kotelnik in August? Also, Alexander is a lefty, and the former WBA champ has not faced a southpaw in quite a while (Norio Kimura of Japan being the most recent, losing on points to Kotelnik almost two years ago).

The 140-pound division is pretty hot right now, to say the least. With these two being up at the top of the top of the division, along with Khan, Maidana, Tim Bradley and Victor Ortiz, the weight class has some potentially thrilling and evenly matched fight possibilities. And it is the lure of these big fights that will inspire both Alexander and Kotelnik to victory in August; along with the two big belts that will be at stake of course.

I think we will see something of a chess match in a little less than three months time, and very probably a 12-rounder that sees the final bell. A stoppage victory, for either guy, would be highly impressive.

I go for Alexander, via a close decision; possibly even one that Kotelnik disputes.

Article posted on 25.05.2010

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