Joshua vs Povetkin odds: Red alert, Russian is dangerousWritten by Leroy Cleveland
It appears that unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua will face Alexander Povetkin (34-1, 24 KO) next.
The fight, unofficial at this moment, is tentatively scheduled for September 22 in the UK.
With all of the hype over a possible Joshua vs Deontay Wilder superfight, promoters on both ends want to keep immediate risks to a minimum in order to secure the big-money affair.
Problem: Alexander Povetkin is Joshua's mandatory and the former's team is refusing to step aside and wait.
Insterestingly, the Joshua vs Povetkin odds are not indicative of the match-up.
As of July 7, 2018, AJ would be a sizeable favorite.
Per Sportsbet, Joshua would be the 1.06 favorite while Povetkin would sit at the underdog position at 7.75. Hence, a $100 wager on the champion would garner a $6 profit while the same bet on Alex would yield a $675 profit.
And bet365 slates Anthony as the favorite via 1.06 to 9.
Rest assured, those numbers will tighten.
Joshua vs Povetkin, should it happen later this year, would not be a tune-up for AJ by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, I consider it a near 50-50 fight.
... And I'm not alone.
Regardless of the Joshua vs Povetkin odds, some of in the boxing community are giving the Russian a reasonable chance to win.
Jay Deas, the co-manager and trainer for Wilder, recently told Daily Mail:
"Joshua should win the fight but he can't win the fight if he's not fully-focused and if there are any distractions or a bad camp or he's looking ahead to anything," Deas said to Daily Mail.
"Povetkin is a tremendous fighter, he has a fantastic left hook. Dillian Whyte hit Joshua and he has a tremendous left hook as well... the question is whether Povetkin has aged a bit or whether he still has it in him to pull out a great fight. That's going to be the question and so we will see. It's a very interesting fight and a dangerous fight."
And Joshua's promoter, Eddie Hearn, recently told SKY Sports:
"He's [Povetkin] only lost once to Klitschko on points and Klitschko hit him with everything, couldn't budge him. He's got an Olympic gold medal, he's got great pedigree, he's got power, he's got speed, he's technically good. This is a dangerous, dangerous fight."
Message to top heavyweights: Don't fight this guy unless you absolutely must.
The 39-year Russian Olympic Gold medal winner is one of the most accomplished amateur heavyweights ever. And after winning the gold at the 2004 Summer Olympics, he finished his amateur career with a record of 125–7, with all losses avenged.
Hence, in his extended amateur career and long stint as a pro, he's defeated everyone he's faced sans Wladimir Klitschko. He lost a decision tilt to Wladimir in a messy, mauling affair in 2013.
The consensus No. 3 heavyweight (behind Joshua and Deontay Wilder), Povetkin has solid power in both hands and underrated hand-speed. He's also quite durable, has a great sense of awareness in the ring, closes the distance well, applies intelligent pressure, and is a fine combination puncher.
Should Anthony win, he won't get the credit he deserves because Povetkin's name isn't as big as Tyson Fury's or Wilder's. However, his pedigree and accomplishments are very much on that level.
Povetkin's most impressive wins
Imamu Mayfield, Chris Byrd, Ruslan Chagaev, Marco Huck, Hasim Rahman, Manuel Charr, Mariusz Wach and Mike Perez.