Home Boxing News Dmitry Bivol explains why he expects Artur Beterbiev to defeat Callum Smith

Dmitry Bivol explains why he expects Artur Beterbiev to defeat Callum Smith

Artur Beterbiev. Photo credit: Reuters

WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol 22-0 (11) is predicting WBC, WBO and IBF counterpart Artur Beterbiev 19-0 (19) will come out victorious against Callum Smith 29-1 (21) providing he is able to dictate the range of their fight.

The 38-year-old Beterbiev of Russia by way of Canada will defend his three belts against Britain’s Smith, 33, at the Centre Videotron in Quebec City, Canada on January 13.

Russian Bivol, 33, is hoping to face the winner in a four-belt unification bout this year.

“I am giving more credit to Beterbiev because he has more experience and he is a tough fighter,” Bivol said to Boxing Social. “Smith will want him to come close to him, he has long arms, but he usually closes the distance, he doesn’t use his arms and for Beterbiev that is good.”

It comes as no surprise that Smith’s promoter Eddie Hearn sees the opposite result.

“You know you can just see it. I remember when Callum Johnson fought Artur Beterbiev [in October 2018 in Chicago, Illinois],” the Matchroom Boxing boss said on the company’s YouTube channel.

“That was years ago in our first ever Matchroom Boxing USA show on DAZN. [Johnson] dropped Beterbiev with a left hook. Every time I think about this fight, as Callum [Smith] does, catch-counter, I can see him knocking out Artur Beterbiev cold in Quebec.

“It’s a tough task. I really believe he’s going to do it.

“People give him a good chance in that fight and I do. I really believe Callum Smith will beat Beterbiev and become the unified light heavyweight world champion and two-division world champion as well. I can’t wait to be there.

“It’s one of those nights where you get a victory over there and it’s one that you really remember.”

Hearn says he has seen signs of decline in Beterbiev, who had a genuine fight on his hands against Anthony Yarde 24-3 (23) last January. Yarde was leading on two of the judges’ scorecards when he was stopped in the eighth.

“I saw [Beterbiev] against Yarde,” said Hearn. “He’s obviously a very good fighter, but he just started showing a few signs [of slowing]. I think he can be hurt, but a big danger, and Callum has got to get it spot on, but I believe he’ll do it.

“His two fights at light heavyweight [against Lenin Castillo and Mathieu Bauderlique] were obviously against opposition not to the level of Beterbiev, but [he] iced them and he can really punch.

“He was at 168 for a long time, struggling to make the weight. So this is a big shootout in Quebec.”