By Sean Jones: Artur Beterbiev has suffered a rib injury and won’t be able to defend his IBF & WBC 175-pound belts against #6 IBF Adam Deines (19-1-1 10 KOs) as previously scheduled for October 23 in Moscow, Russia. Subsequently, the Beterbiev vs. Deines fight will be given a new date for 2020 soon.
The 29-year-old Russian born Deines is a replacement for Beterbievs’s IBF mandatory opponent Fanlong Meng, who had visa problems and couldn’t face him this year.
Deines, who now resides in Magdeburg, Sachsen-Anhalt, Germany, lost a one-sided 12 round unanimous decision to Meng last year in June 2019 in Macao, China.
That’s not exactly inspiring or boxing fans hoping to see a great match-up when the 2012 Russian Olympian Beterbiev (15-0, 15 KOs) defends against Deines in 2020 or whenever this fight happens.
Beterbiev hasn’t fought in 2020
Deines is, for all intents and purposes, a stay busy fight for the knockout artist Beterbiev, who could be facing WBC light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol in 2021.
Beterbiev has had bad luck in 2020 with his mandatory defense against Meng being delayed much longer than was initially planned. If Beterbiev had been able to get Meng out of the way, he could move on to take on the likes of Bivol, Jean Pascal, Joshua Buatsi, and Gilberto Ramirez.,
It will be a disappointment if Beterbiev doesn’t fight at all this year, as he has a growing fan base that looks forward to his fights. For him to be out of the ring for over a year, it’s such a waste.
It’s too bad the IBF doesn’t have their own version of the Franchise title, considering that would enable Beterbiev to concentrate on giving boxing fans the fights they want to watch. Deines and Meng Fanlong are NOT fights that fans are interested in seeing Beterbiev fight. With a Franchise tag with the IBF and WBC, Beterbiev could go after these fighters:
- Joshua Buatsi
- Dmitry Bivol
- Jean Pascal
- Gilberto Ramirez
- Callum Smith
- David Benavidez
- Billy Joe Saunders
- Canelo Alvarez
- Caleb Plant
David Benavidez would be a great opponent for Artur
Former WBC super-middleweight champion David Benavidez would be a great opponent for Beterbiev, as he’s huge for the 168lb division. Benavidez should be fighting at 175 against guys his own size, but obvious why he’s choosing not to do that.
But if Benavidez keeps failing to make weight as we observed for his last contest against Roamer Angulo, he may have little choice but to move up to light heavyweight to take on lions like Beterbiev.
Boxing fans would like to see Beterbiev face those guys, but much less so when it comes to him facing Meng and the little known Deines.
In Beterbiev’s last fight in October of 2019, he scored a 10th round TKO win over WBC 175lb champion Oleksandr Gvozdyk in a unification contest in Philadelphia. Going into that fight, Gvozdyk was a slight favorite, but Beterbiev wore him down with body shots to get the stoppage.
Beterbiev was hoping to get a rematch with Gvozdyk, but the Ukrainian fighter, in a surprise move, opted to retire recently from boxing. Gvozdyk walked away from what would have likely been a sizable payday in deciding to retire.
Many boxing fans wanted to see Gvodzdyk take on Beterbiev in a rematch, but it looks like that will never happen now.
Why didn’t Canelo fight Beterbiev?
Canelo Alvarez recently dethroned WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev last November. Boxing fans wanted to see Canelo hold onto his WBO 175lb title and take on Beterbiev in a unification contest, but the Mexican star gave up the belt in vacating it.
Canelo hasn’t fought since that contest. It would have been nice for Canelo to show the fans would have could do against arguably the best fighter in the 175-lb division in Beterbiev.
Would Canelo do well against Beterbiev as he did against the fading 36-year-old Kovalev, or would he end up getting chopped down and exposed as a pretender? I guess we’ll never know because Canelo decided not to hold onto the WBO belt.
Even if Beterbiev had blasted out Canelo, he would have shown his loyal boxing fans that he’s not an opportunist that some view him as due to the way he selects his opponents. Taking a fight against Beterbiev outside of Las Vegas in a neutral state like New York would have shown real courage Canelo.