Anthony Yarde to Face Beterbiev v Smith Jr Unification Winner in London?
The winner of the June 18, 175-pound unification bout between unified champion Artur Beterbiev (17-0, 17KOs) and WBO champion Joe Smith (28-3, 22KOs) apparently already has their next opponent lined up. Bob Arum, who works closely with Anthony Yarde promoter Frank Warren, has revealed a deal for Beterbiev to defend his titles against fellow hard-hitter Anthony Yarde (22-2, 21KOs) in the fall, if he’s victorious.
There’s no secret that Beterbiev is the overwhelming favorite heading into his fight with Smith. Blessed with tremendous power, the 37-year-old has knocked out every opponent that has set foot in the ring with him thus far in his professional career.
WHAT ABOUT SMITH?
While he’s an underdog, Smith possesses the power to spring a big upset. As for a deal with him taking on Yarde, the plan is presumably the same. However, with him having a co-promoter in Joe DeGuardi, Arum has to sit down and discuss the deal with him.
Speaking to reporters, Arum revealed his plans for the winner of Beterbiev-Smith.
“Frank Warren and I have arranged […] to have the winner of this fight fight Yarde in the U.K. In London, sometime in the fall. So we’ve been able to talk to the Beterbiev’s people and that deal has been done. But we have a co-promoter with Joe Smith in Joe DeGuardi, so we’d have to sit down and talk with them. But, it would be my goal for whoever wins this fight to go over to London to fight Yarde.”
Regardless of who wins the fight between Beterbiev and Smith, this will be a huge opportunity for Yarde. The British light heavyweight ranks #1 (WBO), #3 (IBF), #4 (WBC) and #8 (WBA). This will be his second world title opportunity. The first came back in August of 2019 against former unified 175-pound champion Sergey “The Krusher” Kovalev, who stopped him in eleven rounds. Since the loss to The Krusher, Yarde has gone 4-1 in his last five fights. He was upset by Lyndon Arthur in December of 2020, but recently got revenge by stopping him in four rounds in the rematch back in December of 2021.
Anthony Yarde is expected to be in attendance for the Beterbiev v Smith Jr unification fight.
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By: Jerrell Fletcher