Fight Preview: Artur Beterbiev vs Callum Johnson

Artur Beterbiev vs Callum Johnson
Artur Beterbiev (Left) and Callum Johnson (Right)

Artur Beterbiev vs Callum Johnson

October 6, IBF World Light-Heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev defends his title against England’s own, Callum Johnson. The championship bout will take place at the Wintrust Arena in Chicago, Illinois. DAZN will broadcast the event which features Jessie Vargas vs. Thomas Dulorme as the
main attraction.

Artur Beterbiev (12-0, 12 KOs)

With a combination of predator-like instincts and power in both hands, Artur Beterbiev has quickly become a fan-favorite in a stacked light-heavyweight division. At first glance, the Russian world champion’s record is deceiving; it stands at twelve wins, no losses, and all of his wins are by knockout.
But twelve fights!!? How can he be as good as perceived without many professional fights? Here, is where Beterbiev’s amateur pedigree comes into play. He competed in three-hundred bouts; only losing five. Amongst those victories are Sergey Kovalev (2), Yunier Dorticos, and Michael Hunter Jr.

Without question, he has what it takes to beat any present-day light-heavyweight in the world.

In his last outing, Beterbiev battled Enrico Koelling. Koelling would start and remain very timidh throughout the contest; seemingly looking to survive rather than face what most believed was a foregone conclusion. The end would come in the twelfth round with Beterbiev knocking Koelling down twice, forcing the referee to call a halt to the bout. At 33, however, we need to see more of the powerful puncher. His career has suffered due to promotional issues and injury. One can only hope that
Saturday’s fight opens up more opportunities and exposure for Beterbiev.

Advice to Beterbiev: be methodical. Johnson is very confident; break him down with a stiff jab and hard body shots.

Callum Johnson (17-0, 12 KOs)

The undefeated Commonwealth and BBBofC British Light Heavyweight champion will enter Saturday’s fight confident he can be the first man to beat Beterbiev. Johnson has produced knockouts in both of his British championship bouts and would like to duplicate that success on the world stage. In his last contest, the “Wise Guy” blew through Frank Bugiloni in one round, shocking most who were watching.

The British champion also brings good amateur experience into this fight; he fought a total of one hundred twenty bouts, winning ninety five, and losing twenty five. Johnson understands what he’s up against. He will need to bring every bit of that confidence and experience with him, against a guy who has the potential to rule the light-heavyweight division.

Advice to Johnson: Having confidence is great, but it can also be detrimental if you use it wrong. Stick to what you know and keep Beterbiev thinking and guessing; use feints and angles.

Outcome: Beterbiev wins by 10th round KO. He will start slow; a product of not fighting in a year. However, once he gets rolling, it’s over.

By: Cessell Robinson

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