Arslanbek Makhmudov Needs to Push Towards a Title Shot
In 2019, undefeated heavyweight prospect Arslanbek “Lion” Makhmudov (14-0, 14 KO’s) was featured on the 3Kings Boxing prospect watch. Well, he is no longer a prospect and has moved up to contender status. The 32-year-old Russian native made a name for himself in the World Series of Boxing before entering the professional ranks in 2017.
He won excellent step-up fights since 2019. The first came against former WBC champion Samuel “The Nigerian Nightmare” Peter that year. He won another step-up against veteran Erkan Teper in 2021. He only fought once in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
With two high-profile fights that took place on February 19, his next challenge against former title contender Mariusz Wach went under the radar.
TIME TO PUSH TOWARDS THE TITLE
The Lion attacked Wach from the moment the bell sounded. He was able to get his punches off first and worked off the jab. Wach proved to be an old dog with some fight left. In round three he landed two big right hands that knocked Makhmudov’s mouthpiece out. In the sixth round, he stalked Wach into the corner and unloaded a barrage of right hands before sending the former title contender to the canvas. Despite beating the count, it was clear Wach was done, and the referee waved off the contest.
Makhmudov has knocked out everyone that has stepped inside the ring. Now it is time to stop feasting on past-their-prime journeymen and look to challenge someone within the rankings. He is ranked #8 by the WBA and #10 by the WBC; there are plenty of opponents to choose from for his next fight.
Although he has fought primarily in his adopted country of Canada, the Lion may have to travel and look to fight guys like Martin Bakole, Agit Kabayel, Robert Helenius or Zhan Kossobutskiy. The 32-year-old’s advanced age does not give him much time. The window of opportunity is small and the goal in 2022 should be to push towards a championship fight.
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By: Garrisson Bland