Callum Johnson vs. Artur Beterbiev
|Date & Time||Saturday October 6, 2018, 11:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: -- Over/Under:
Artur Beterbiev and Callum Johnson fight Saturday for the IBF light-heavyweight title.
Artur Beterbiev enters this fight with a 12-0 record that includes 12 knockouts. This will be Beterbiev’s second fight since 2017, and he’s coming off a November win over Enrico Koelling. Beterbiev will defend his belt for the first time after he abused Koelling, who refused to let his hands go. Beterbiev landed over 300 punches and produced two knockdowns before a 12th round knockout, while his opponent landed less than 70 punches. Beterbiev is 33 years old, stands at 5’11” with a 73 inch reach and has an orthodox stance. Beterbiev has produced knockouts in all 12 of his fights and has made it out of the fourth round just twice. Conditioning was an issue for Beterbiev in the past, but he likely answered some of those questions with his most recent bout. Beterbiev usually walks down his opponent and is always the aggressor, as he threw over 1,000 punches in his last fight. Beterbiev has an effective jab and a vicious right hand that can drop most fighters in this division when landed cleanly. This is a nice fight for the Russian to give him increased exposure considering he’s been rather inactive compared to other fighters in this division.
Callum Johnson enters this fight with a 17-0 record that includes 12 knockouts. This will be Johnson’s second fight this year, and he’s coming off a March win over Frank Buglioni. This will be Johnson’s second time fighting in over two years, and he’s coming off a bout in which he just won the British light heavyweight title. This will be easily the biggest fight of Johnson’s career and a chance to really put himself in the conversation as one of the best within this division. Johnson is 33 years old and has an orthodox stance. Johnson is an old school brawler who likes to box on the inside and throws a ton of clean hooks and puts combinations together nicely. When landed, Johnson is one of the more fun boxers within this division to watch due to his work rate and ability to counter. Win, lose or draw, Johnson is going to get his money’s worth and throw a large number of shots. Of course, this fight will tell us a lot more about Johnson due to his resume featuring many questionable names. Let’s see how he does against one of the big boys within this division.
If you’re a fan of heavyweight boxing and still waiting for the Anthony Joshua - Deontay Wilder bout to take place, this could hold you over for a bit. Both fighters stay busy, have great knockout power and aren’t going to be afraid to let their hands go. Power punch after power punch. The problem is Johnson has spent his whole career standing in the middle of the ring and trading punches. That works against no names, it’s not going to work against Beterbiev, who is in the class of powerful Russians who beats dudes to the ground when allowed to fight his style. Johnson is going to need movement, patience and rely more on counters to win this fight. Thinking you can trade blow for blow with a guy as polished as Beterbiev is a mistake.
Great fight and there will be impressive shots, but Beterbiev wins.