David Price assesses Rahman V Povetkin
Liverpool behemoth David Price makes his big debut on Saturday 13th October at the Liverpool Olympia when he takes on British rival Audley Harrison in a Battle of the Olympians.
Heavy-handed Price, a Bronze medallist at the Beijing Olympics in 2008, is unbeaten in 13 fights with 11 going early - 9 of them inside three rounds - puts his British and Commonwealth titles on the line against the 2000 Olympic Champion.
Here Price gives his opinion on another big heavyweight showdown this Saturday night live and exclusive on BoxNation that sees WBA World Champion Alexander Povetkin defend his title against former WBC World Champion Hasim Rahman in a massive clash.
With Price on the verge of hitting the world scene, the winner of Povetkin and Rahman could be a target in the not to distant future for Britain’s leading heavyweight talent.
Big Pricey says: ‘I think the styles are going to gel really well. Povetkin likes to come forward and is rarely in a bad fight.
I’ve followed Povetkin closely since we were both competing at the major international amateur tournaments. We were never drawn against each other but he completely dominated the amateurs (two time European senior champion, plus world senior champion and 2004 Olympic gold medallist) .
Alex is a very solid all round fighter who does all the basics very well and always gets the job done without ever looking really spectacular. One thing that’s often overlooked is his boxing brain. He’s far cleverer than he appears.
He attacks with educated pressure, has good skills and works the body well. He’s got a fast right hand over the top which is dangerous but, though I have seen him take people out, he’s not a really concussive puncher at top world level. His shots are clean and solid but probably his greatest strength is his accuracy. It’s the accumulative affect of his shots that usually account for his stoppages.
To be honest, I expected Povetkin to have made an even bigger impression than he has in the pros but the dominance of the Klitschko brothers has blocked him a bit. They hold a monopoly on the main belts. He’d probably have a reasonable chance of dethroning Vitali who’s not what he was but I think Povetkin’s style is tailor made for both the Klitschkos.
He’s not the quickest and I think you have to be more elusive to trouble the Klitschkos. Whatever, he appears resigned to waiting for them to disappear before asserting his authority. That said, I think David Haye also beats Povetkin; too much speed and power.
At 39, I wouldn’t expect that Rahman will be able to beat him. Though he’s scored five successive stoppages recently, I think he’s still well past his best. When he challenged Wladimir Klitschko four years back, he just couldn’t get into the fight at all.
Funnily enough, I was watching Rahman’s first fight with Lennox Lewis only recently, when he knocked Lennox out in the fifth round to win the world title over in South Africa.
Back then, he was a good solid heavyweight, a typical well-schooled US type. He’s a big man - probably about 25 lbs heavier and a fraction taller than Povetkin – and he packs a big, big punch. He’s only lost to the very top fighters. (In 18 years, only David Tua, Oleg Maskaev (twice), Lewis, Evander Holyfield, John Ruiz and Klitschko have beaten Rahman).
I remember him boxing in Liverpool very early in his pro career (a first round knockout of Marcos Gonzales at Everton Park in December 1996) and, back in his day, he had a good jab, good movement and a decent defence.
Hasim always comes to fight and I guess he’s still got a puncher’s chance, especially if he can establish his jab early and break Povetkin’s rhythm. He needs to unsettle the Russian, not allow Povetkin to set himself in close.
But I’m expecting Povetkin to do a number on Hasim. True, Povetkin might have stamina issues. He certainly struggled with the pace late on in his last defence against Marco Huck but Rahman’s a lot slower on his feet than Huck is. It’ll be very hard for Rahman over in Germany and I’d be surprised if Povetkin doesn’t stop him late on.'