Joshua Buatsi v Maxim Vlasov: A Pivotal Battle of World-Ranked Light Heavyweights
Unbeaten world light heavyweight contender Joshua Buatsi (15-0, 13 KOs) takes on the biggest test of his career as he faces former world title challenger Maxim Vlasov (45-4, 26 KO) on December 18 at the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England. The contest will happen on the undercard Dereck Chisora – Joseph Parker II and will air live on DAZN.
STEPPING UP AT THE RIGHT TIME
Buatsi is one of the prized fighters of the Matchroom Boxing stable. The 28-year-old from London, England seems to have it all as a fighter. He’s steadily progressed as a pro, displaying the all-around ability, speed, and power that has UK boxing press tabbing him as a future world champion. Ranked in the top five by all four major sanctioning bodies, the level of expectation rises. Those same pundits, and fans, are waiting for Buatsi to face his big test.
He’s likely to receive it against Vlasov. The 35-year-old is coming off a disputed loss to Joe Smith Jr for the vacant WBO world 175 pound title in April of 2021. The product of Samara, Russia presents a style that will be tough to solve.
NO EASY MARK
Ranked #4 by the IBF, Vlasov is not a power-puncher. His style is the equivalent of a junk ball pitcher in baseball. What he often does is hit you with off-speed punches, thrown with a lot of frequency. He does this while being constantly on the move. When you add the toughness and physical conditioning, Vlasov is a tough out for anyone.
WHAT’S ON THE LINE
This is the best opponent of Buatsi’s career. But when thought of as a future star, you need fights like this to prove your worth. Vlasov is looking to get back into world title contention. With both men being ranked so high by the IBF at 175, it’s a high probability that the winner will receive a world title shot at some point in 2022.
By: Michael Wilson Jr.