Usyk Still Uncertain Of Future At Cruiserweight

Undisputed cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk is getting close to making a decision that will not only impact his future, but the fate of two divisions.

Usyk spent 2018 building up his resume through the World Boxing Super Series, where he would earn his way to becoming the first undisputed champion in the cruiserweight division when he shut out Murat Gassiev in July. From there Usyk would end the career of Tony Bellew in November by knocking out the former world champion in Manchester.

Now, Usyk and new promoter Eddie Hearn are looking at what lies ahead for the Ukrainian in 2019.

“We have a meeting in New York next week to decide his next fight and date,” Hearn told ESPN on Wednesday. “He either stays at cruiserweight and fights [former world titlist Denis] Lebedev or moves up.”

Hearn intimated that a potential fight against current light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev is possible, with the latter looking to move up to cruiserweight.

“We have two more viable positions with Alexander Povetkin and Luis Ortiz, two of the best heavyweights of today,” K2 Promotions Alexander Krassyuk, Usyk’s co-promoter, said.

Povetkin and Ortiz were both world title challengers in 2018, with Povetkin falling to Anthony Joshua in November in a seventh round knockout and Ortiz falling in the 10th round against Deontay Wilder in a classic showdown in March.

“If those options fail, we can defend the cruiserweight titles against Denis Lebedev in March,” he said. “We plan to meet with Eddie Hearn at the end of next week to discuss our options.”

 

Initial Report: ESPN

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