Arslanbek Makhmudov vows to ‘go looking and do my finest to destroy’ Raphael Akeijiori

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The bodily imposing Arslanbek Makhmudov. (Picture by Vincent Ethier)

Heavyweight Arslanbek Makhmudov will face fellow unbeaten power-puncher Raphael Akeijiori as chief help to Jared Anderson’s homecoming towards former titlist Charles Martin on Saturday on the Huntington Middle, Toledo, Ohio.

Makhmudov, who was the topic of a New Faces within the July 2020 subject of Ring journal, acknowledges his Nigerian opponent will current issues however none he wont be capable of take care of.

“He’s an excellent opponent,” Makhmudov (16-0, 15 knockouts) instructed The Ring. “He’s taller than me, it’s not an issue for me. I’ve already met guys taller than me like [Mariusz] Wach, he had extra expertise than me. This man is harmful, on this weight [class] everyone seems to be harmful. It’s not an issue [laughs.] The factor is whoever does his job higher goes to win.

“My aim and goal are the identical, like typical, I am going looking and do my finest to destroy him.”

The 34-year-old Russian-born fighter, who now resides in Montreal, hasn’t fought since a first-round stoppage over Michael Wallisch final December. Nonetheless, that hasn’t meant he’s not stayed in form and in coaching.

Makhmudov is 6-feet-5 and a effectively chiselled 260-pounds. He retains himself in glorious form no matter an upcoming battle. So, when he does have a battle date he can work on specifics and never must get in combating form.

“After my final battle I took a break, possibly one week,” he revealed. “I do some coaching however not like sparring however this it’s near boxing, swimming, operating, bicycle stuff [to stay in shape.] I’ve nonetheless been lively.”

Makhmudov’s American debut will participate on the undercard of one other intriguing heavyweight battle between Anderson and late substitute Martin, who steps in for beforehand unbeaten Zhan Kossobutskiy.

“It’s going to be a very good battle, two boxers and what I find out about these guys it’s at all times fascinating fights.” he mentioned.

Makhmudov stays targeted on the duty in hand however hopes to advances his claims to face the massive names in his division within the not-too-distant future.

“My aim for this yr is to be near battle for the world title,” he mentioned. “Battle as quickly as potential for the title this yr or subsequent.”

Makhmudov’s long-time coach Marc Ramsay, who additionally works with amongst others IBF, WBC and WBO gentle heavyweight titleholder Artur Beterbiev, acknowledges the potential hazard of this battle.

“It is a good battle for us, it’s the first professional battle exterior of Canada and on ESPN for Arslanbek,” mentioned the much-feted coach. “The opponent is a big-puncher, particularly with the appropriate hand. It is going to be an explosive battle once you already know the model of Mahkmudov. On the finish of the day, I imagine Arslan extra full fighter and that can make the distinction.”

Eye of The Tiger’s Camille Estephan hopes that by combating within the U.S. will assist garner additional consideration and push Makhumdov into greater fights that thus far have eluded him.

“We’re completely satisfied he’s doing his debut within the U.S.,” mentioned Estephan. “They name him the Lion and he desires to indicate he’s the king of the jungle. He’s able to make a press release.

“Each time we speak to one of many promoters about Arslanbek combating considered one of their guys, the remark comes again, ‘For him to battle your monster, I need X amount of cash.’ Often a quantity that’s manner off the charts. We take it as a praise.”

Akeijiori (15-0, 14 KOs) was born in Lagos, Nigeria however moved to Wichita, Kansas after receiving a basketball scholarship in 2008. He moved to Miami after being recruited for the college basketball group. He then switched to soccer and tried out for the Miami Dolphins.

The 6-feet-8 Nigerian then gave boxing a go, going 13-1 as an beginner earlier than turning skilled in September 2018. Whereas the extent of opposition hasn’t been that prime, he has stopped all however considered one of his opponents needing simply 26 skilled rounds. The one man to take him the gap was veteran trial horse Terrell Jamal Woods (UD 8).

It is a assembly of two modern-day heavyweights. Each have energy and this might very effectively be brief and explosive. You need to favor Makhmudov together with his vastly extra in depth beginner background and stronger professional resume however this battle might be harmful till it’s over.

Anderson-Martin, plus supporting undercard, might be broadcast on ESPN, starting at 10 p.m ET/ 7 p.m PT.

 

Questions and/or feedback will be despatched to Anson at [email protected].



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