Klitschko Survives Peter in Impressive Victory

25.09.05 - By Geoffrey Ciani: Frankly, Iím shocked that last nightís heavyweight bout between top contenders Wladimir Klitschko and Samuel Peter went the distance. Even more shocking was the way this fight unfolded: if you would have told me before the fight that Wladimir Klitschko would survive three knockdowns and escape with a unanimous decision victory, I would have thought you were crazy Ė but thatís exactly what transpired in one of the more interesting heavyweight bouts Iíve seen in some time..

I was rather impressed with both fighters. This might be just what the younger Klitschko needed to restore his confidence and propel himself back towards the top of the division. The victory improves his record to 45-3 and, after suffering the first loss of his professional career, Peterís record drops to 24-1. I was most impressed by the heart and will exhibited by each fighter; both deserve credit for taking such a risky fight in the first place.

I think Peter had his chances and blew it. His stamina appeared to be lacking, and he didn't pounce on the opportunities KO Wlad. He just didnít seem to throw enough punches on the several occasions he had Klitshcko hurt. That said, Peter was a very formidable opponent who provided a huge test -- and Wladimir passed!

I'm a tad upset that Wlad doesn't throw that snappy, short hook as often as he did before joining forces with Steward -- but when he does throw it, he throws it with authority and it's an absolutely beautiful punch. He also has, bar none, the best jab in the division and he has a great right hand that nicely compliments it. His hand speed was tremendous and his punches carried quite a bit of snap throughout all twelve rounds.

Peter needs to throw more punches. Unfortunately for the young Nigerian, he reminded me an awful lot of David Tua last night. He should have pounced in the 6th after the two knockdowns. Instead, he took the round off, and Wlad boxed brilliantly.

This was an outstanding win for Klitshcko. I believe his next fight should be against either the Brewster/Kranski winner or the Byrd/Williamson winner. He deserves a title shot after last nightís impressive showing. As far as Peter goes, I don't think he has anything to be ashamed of. He fought an elite fighter and made a great account of himself. He'll be back, and I believe he can probably learn from this setback and go on to beat most top heavyweights on any given night.

As far as Wladimir goes, he proved so much in this fight I don't know where to begin. I was convinced he was done in the 5th, and I actually found myself feeling a bit sorry for him because of the tremendous heart he displayed just trying to survive the round. As it turned out, that heart enabled him to go on and win this crossroads fight. His chin still looked shaky, but what he lacked in chin, he more than made up for in heart, will, and determination. Wlad showed the true character of a champion -- nobody can deny this. Klitshcko also showed that he does have pretty good stamina, and that he can come back from some nasty knockdowns and still win a big fight Ė I was most impressed..

The weird thing about Wlad is he still seems to go into panic mode whenever heís hit with a hard punch. Itís almost as if his anxiety gets the best of him. He never looked especially hurt on any of the knockdowns, and his legs seemed strong enough after each one. It really seems to be something mental when he gets tagged -- but he won the mental battle and deserves all the credit in the world for this outstanding victory. I believe Klitshcko will come out of this a much better fighter.

On a personal note, I'm also thrilled that George Foreman was back in action as a commentator. I know he's not very popular, but I'm a big fan of "Big" George, and I was thrilled at his return. I feel heís a great commentator who was unceremoniously dumped by HBO due to bogus reasons in the aftermath of a couple of close bouts.

I have the utmost respect for ďBigĒ Georgeís opinion, and I believe HBO would be wise to bring him back in future broadcasts. Especially if Roy Jones somehow pulls off a miracle next week, and finds a way to continue on with his boxing career.

In closing, a warning to the heavyweight division -- Wladimir Klitschko has arrived and he seems capable of beating any heavyweight in the world if he can fight like he did against Peter.

Overall, last night was an outstanding boxing experience.

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Article posted on 25.09.2005

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