Wednesday, October 04, 2023  |



Heavyweight contender Otto Wallin to face Murat Gassiev on September 30

Otto Wallin. Photo by Amanda Westcott/ SHOWTIME
Fighters Network

Heavyweight contender Otto Wallin wants all the smoke.

Even while waiting for a rematch against Tyson Fury, or a fight against Oleksandr Usyk, Wallin is willing to face one of the more feared punchers in the division.

Wallin will face once-beaten Murat Gassiev on September 30, it was confirmed to The Ring by Dmitiry Salita, who promotes Wallin. The 12-round bout will take place at the Regnum Carya Hotel in Antalya, Turkey.

The clash between Wallin and Gassiev could produce fireworks as both fighters come forward and throw an abundant amount of punches. 

The 32-year-old Wallin has been hoping to land a rematch against Fury, whom he lost a close decision to in September 2019. Salita even pushed for a fight between Wallin and Usyk, the Ring Magazine heavyweight champion and unified world titleholder, but to no avail.

“We have tried to land a meaningful fight for Otto and, through that process, kept him active with stay-busy fights,” Salita told The Ring Monday. “Those fights gave Otto an opportunity to work and further improve.

“I talked to Eddie (Hearn) on several occasions about the (Anthony) Joshua fight and, when push came to shove, Otto did not work because he is a skilled southpaw. 

“The fight with Gassiev was discussed for a significant amount of time. Otto has always shown the desire to fight the best in the division. With a win against one of the more avoided fighters in Gassiev, Otto will show that he belongs with the division’s best and the fight with Fury was not just a one-hit wonder.”

Wallin (25-1, 14 knockouts), who is originally from Sundsvall, Sweden and now resides in New York City, last appeared in a stay-busy fight on January 27, defeating Helaman Olguin by unanimous decision. 

In his previous fight on May 26 of last year, the southpaw Wallin defeated gatekeeper Rydell Booker by unanimous decision. Wallin has won his last five bouts since losing to Fury. 

Wallin is managed by Jolene Mizzone.

Gassiev (30-1, 23 KOs) knocked out Michael Balogun in the second round of his last fight on March 3. Balogun entered the fight unbeaten. 

The 29-year-old, who is originally from Vladikavkaz, Russia and now resides in Big Bear, California, has won his last four bouts, all by knockout, since losing to Oleksandr Usyk in July 2018. The loss to Usyk was a clash for the undisputed cruiserweight championship.

Gassiev has been co-promoted by Warriors Boxing and Ural Boxing Promotions.

Also on the card, hard-hitting junior middleweight Khuseyn Baysangurov (21-1, 19 KOs) of Moscow, Russia will square off against Fatih Keles (17-1-1, 10 KOs) of Turkey in a 10-round bout.

Also in junior middleweight action, Cuban-born Luis Miguel Boyona (6-0, 3 KOs) will face Uzbekistan’s Bakhromjon Fozilov (10-2-3, 9 KOs) in a six-round bout.

There is no word yet on which platform the card will be televised or streamed. 


Francisco A. Salazar has written for The Ring since October 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper. He can be reached at [email protected]


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