Povetkin vs. Stiverne is going to purse bid
Apparently, Alexander Povetkin’s promoter didn’t go for Don King’s idea of staging the fight with Bermane Stiverne in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman informed RingTV.com that promoters for both boxers were unable to reach a deal for their WBC-mandated interim heavyweight title match, forcing a purse bid to be scheduled for Friday in New York at 4 p.m. “at a selected hotel,” which he declined to mention.
Sulaiman said in an email that three promoters have registered to participate in the auction: World of Boxing’s Andrey Ryabinsky, who handles Povetkin; King for Stiverne and Titov Boxing Promotions, a Russian-based organization. The promoter who makes the most lucrative offer will get to promotionally oversee the bout. The WBC has mandated a 50/50 purse split.
The decision in August to stage this fight was tinged with controversy because Povetkin flunked a drug test for traces of the banned substance meldonium, causing his fight with WBC champion Deontay Wilder on May 21 to be canceled. The WBC conducted an extensive investigation and decided not to discipline Povetkin because the amounts of meldonium were so low.
Rather than suspend him, it rewarded him with a chance to win an interim title and with that, gain a likely shot at the legitimate WBC champion, Deontay Wilder, who is sidelined until 2017 with a hand and biceps injury. The winner of Povetkin-Stiverne will apparently get to face Wilder. As part of the WBC’s decision not to punish him, Povetkin must conform to a rigorous drug-testing program for the bout with Stiverne.
King, the 85-year-old promoter, issued a press release in August suggesting the fight could take place in the Democratic Republic of Congo, formerly Zaire, which hosted the “Rumble in the Jungle” in 1974 between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman. King was the promoter of that bout and he would surely like to gain control of Povetkin-Stiverne as well.
Struggling to locate a copy of RING magazine? Try here or…
You can subscribe to the print and digital editions of RING magazine by clicking the banner or here. You can also order the current issue, which is on newsstands, or back issues from our subscribe page. On the cover this month: Sugar Ray Leonard