It’s Unanimous: Povetkin Bests Chambers

By Francis Walker
Updated: January 27, 2008

GlovesNEW YORK — 2004 Olympic gold medalist and unbeaten heavyweight Alexander Povetkin became the No. 1-ranked contender by the International Boxing Federation. Povetkin (15-0, 11 KOs) outworked previously unbeaten Eddie Chambers (30-1, 16 KOs) at the Tempodome in Berlin, Germany on Saturday.

Povetkin-Chambers was the final of an IBF mandated elimination tournament to determine the leading heavyweight contender for Wladimir Klitschko. The 28 year-old Russian will await the results of Klitschko’s next bout.

In the first world heavyweight championship unification bout in nine years, Klitschko defends his IBF crown against Sultan Ibragimov, an unbeaten WBO champion on February 23, at Madison Square Garden.

The winner, either Klitschko or Ibragimov, will face Povetkin sometime in the summer. Povetkin showed power, technical skills, and boxed well against Chambers.

He hit Chambers with straight punches that he didn’t get hit with when he fought Calvin Brock. When Povetkin threw punches that landed between Chambers’ guard, the younger 25 year-old from Philadelphia backed straight up.

Chambers was effective too. He took advantage of the fact that Povetkin dropped his hands after throwing shots. Chambers was effective with his right hand, as it caused a huge inflammation around Povetkin’s left eye.

As the bout reached the later rounds, Povetkin’s power became increasingly noticeable. It was evident that Chambers simply wasn’t as strong as Povetkin, who landed the more effective and aggressive punches.

Chambers didn’t have the power to keep Povetkin off. Povetkin got off first and the more he threw, the more Chambers absorbed. Povetkin has had just 15 professional fights after compiling a 125-7 amateur boxing record.

Prior to Chambers, Povetkin stopped former IBF and WBO heavyweight champion Chris Byrd in the eleventh round in November. Povetkin is developing greater confidence and continues to improve.

Klitschko vs. Povetkin

Should Klitschko beat Ibragimov next month, he has to fight Povetkin immediately. Povetkin, because of his size, skills, and amateur experience, can beat a number of ranked heavyweights.

However, Wladimir too was an Olympic super heavyweight gold medal champion. Wladmir has developed a good track record as a professional for more than a decade and could be at his very best today.

No heavyweight can stand on the outside and absorb Klitschko’s power for twelve rounds, unless they can seriously hurt Klitschko. Sam Peter went 12 rounds with Wladimir in September 2005.

Peter scored three knockdowns and had Klitschko seriously hurt. Wladimir still out-boxed Peter through twelve rounds, but nearly shattered Peter’s jaw with a single shot in the final round.

At 6-feet-7 and 245 pounds, Wladimir is considerably bigger, stronger, and has more experience than the 6-foot-2, 229-pound Povetkin. Although Povetkin is strong, Chambers was willing to take risks by moving forward and landed some big shots that landed flush.

Klitschko-Povetkin is an intriguing heavyweight fight, but first Wladimir must get past Ibragimov — another unbeaten heavyweight.