Home Boxing News Ambitious Dmitry Bivol wants unification fights after WBA light heavyweight title defence...

Ambitious Dmitry Bivol wants unification fights after WBA light heavyweight title defence against Jean Pascal

Dmitry Bivol

WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol 14-0 (11) has opened up about phenomenal punching power ahead of his third world title defence against Jean Pascal 33-5-1 (20) at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City on Saturday, November 24 televised live on HBO.

“If I think I can get a knockout, of course, I will do this. People want to see knockouts,” Bivol said after a media workout at Churchill Boxing in Santa Monica, California on Tuesday.

“The most important knockout punch is not the hardest punch. It is the punch no one sees coming. It is the element of surprise.”

Canadian veteran Pascal, 36, has shared the square circle with some of the best super middleweight and light heavyweight boxers of recent years, including Bernard Hopkins (twice), Sergey Kovlev (twice), Carl Froch.

“I saw his fights against (Sergey) Kovalev, and against Bernard Hopkins,” said Bivol. “He was different than he is now. I just want to win and make this defence… Of course I respect him as a boxer, but when I go in the ring, he will be my enemy.”

The 27-year-old Russian was upgraded from interim to full WBA champion with his first round knockout of Australian Trent Broadhurst a year ago. He has defended the title twice this year already with a 12th round stoppage of Miami-based Cuban Sullivan Barrera in March and a 12-round unanimous decision win over crafty veteran Isaac Chilemba of South Africa by way of Malawi.

The plan, according to Bivol’s manager Vadim Kornilov, is to aim for unification bouts in the new year. But first he has to make a statement against Pascal.

“At the end of the day, Dmitry still has a tough test [against Pascal],” said Kornilov. “He hasn’t had 20 fights. He’s fighting these guys with over 30, 40 fights. It’s still a big, big thing for him to experience and to be a main event fighter.

“Next year we are talking about unification. We don’t want to run ahead of ourselves, but if everything goes well in this fight. Pascal is a live dog, he’s a real fighter. We have all the respect for him.

“[Bivol’s] excited about unification. Wherever we can get the biggest fight, biggest unification, it doesn’t matter about the network. Dmitry wants anyone at 175. He’s been wanting this for the last year.”

The exciting power-puncher insists he wants to test himself out against the very best in the talent-rich 175-pound weight class.

“I want to fight the best, and do it for the people, for the boxing fans,” said Bivol. “I want to fight against the best, because I am next to the best and I want to be the best.

“When I come to the ring, I don’t think about my win. I think about making a great fight, a good fight so that people will be excited about my fights.

“When I was young, of course, I had a dream to be a champion. But now, it’s not enough for me. Now I want to realize my ability, and I want to show all my qualities to as many people as I can.”