IBF/WBC light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev’s promoter Bob Arum wants no part in setting up a unification fight between the two-time Russian Olympian with unbeaten WBA 175-lb champion Dmitry Bivol in 2022.
According to the Top Rank promoter Arum, a fight between Beterbiev (17-0, 17 KOs) lacks the glamour needed to be one that would interest the boxing public.
While the undefeated 31-year-old Kyrgyzstan-born native Bivol (19-0, 11 KOs) has loads of talent and boxing ability, his fighting style is quite dull, making a fight between him and Beterbiev being one not worthy of putting together.
Even if Arum were to make the Beterbiev-Bivol three-belt unification, as some hardcore fans would be interested in seeing, it wouldn’t attract casual fans worldwide, and it wouldn’t be a huge money-maker.
Subsequently, Beterbiev, Arum, and Top Rank would gain very little from the fight with Bivol.
Moreover, adding the WBA 175-lb title to Beterbiev’s collection of belts would saddle him with the burden of needing to defend that belt against the lackluster mandatory challengers for that title and having to pay the sanctioning fees for the strap.
“Yeah, but really that fight [Beterbiev vs. Dmitry Bivol] has no pizzaz to it,” said Top Rank boss Bob Arum to iFL TV.
“Bivol is a very good boxer, but sort of a BORING fighter. But people will look at the light heavyweight division and want to see shootouts like Beterbiev’s last fight against [Marcus] Browne [on December 17th in Montreal, Canada] and like this upcoming Smith fight with Callum Johnson.”Bivol is an excellent boxer, but he’s sort of boring to watch.”
Arum is kind by saying that Bivol is “Sort of a boring fighter,” because he’s very hard on the eyes due to his technical fighting style.
That might explain why Canelo Alvarez hesitates about moving up to 175 to try and become the undisputed champion in this weight class after accomplishing that feat at 168 last November.
Bivol recently defeated little-known challenger Umar Salamov by a painfully dull 12 round unanimous earlier this month on December 11th in Ekaterinburg, Russia.
That fight was just one of the many lackluster wins on Bivol’s resume, and he appears to be focusing more on boxing than he has in the past now that he’s in his 30s.
The fight that Arum would like to set up is a match between Beterbiev and Canelo, as that one will sell to the fans in the U.S. However, Canelo still hasn’t said whether he’d move up to 175, despite the intense interest from fans worldwide in seeing him do that.
Canelo’s trainer Eddy Reynoso wants him to challenge WBC cruiserweight champion Ilunga Makabu on the Cinco de Mayo holiday on May 7th. However, they still need to wait for Makabu to make a mandatory defense against Thabiso Mchunu on January 29th first.