This is a good match up between two top 10 fighters in the heavyweight division. The fight will be contested over 12 rounds for a few meaningless WBC belts and a mandatory spot for the winner of Wilder versus Fury 3. Neither boxer looked great in their last performance but Whyte has the best chance to improve because his was due to being overweight while Povetkin is down to him being old and having a long career.
Dillian Whyte should be in his prime right now and in his last few fights has certainly shown that. He’s mixed it with world class fighters and not only shown he can compete with them but that he can beat them. This is remarkable considering before and after the Joshua fight most people felt like he would remain a domestic heavyweight with that being the best he could get out of his talent. Whyte has a good jab and as the promotional videos keeps saying a good left hook. He’s one of the most active(punches per round) heavyweights which may be why he sometimes fades late in fights. He’s not hard to hit but he does have a good chin as it takes a lot to put him down and especially to keep him down. One of his biggest assets is his toughness and his willingness to out dog his opponents through sheer will or roughhouse tactics. He’s certainly not the most technical fighter in the division and I think most people would describe him as a technically awful fighter which I think is a bit harsh. I think he has in the past been dragged into wars which he could have won by simply using his jab like he did in the Rivas fight.
Alexander Povetkin won gold at the 2004 Olympics and has had a stellar pro career since then. At this point however he is 41 and in his past few fights has shown he is well past his prime. He is a very technically good boxer and has a great left hook which he has finished a lot of fights with. I think he has a good chin and has only been stopped once and that was against a big puncher in Anthony Joshua. I think his stamina is on the decline because he looked exhausted in both the Hunter and Hughie Fury fights. He clearly has some power left but it’s nothing like he used to have 6 or 7 years ago though if he connects cleanly then it can still put people out. I think his defense is solid enough though he did get caught cold by Hunter early on in their fight but still managed to stay on his feet. I think if Whyte landed with the same punches Povetkin would have been KO’d though Hunter does have quicker hands than Whyte. Povetkin showed good recovery skills in that fight and he does have a wealth of experience. Povetkin has a great overhand right which he disguises very well. If Whyte throws a lazy jab Povetkin will be able to catch him with the overhand right and this could work for him all night as Whyte throws a lot of jabs.
I think Whyte will win by late stoppage because I think Povetkin is past his best and Whyte looks to have had a great camp. I think Whyte’s jab will keep Povetkin at bay for most rounds and as time goes on Povetkin will start to tire and Whyte can finish the fight. I wouldn’t be surprised if Povetkin timed Whyte’s jabs and stops him though as he has the pedigree and timing to still be able to do that at 41. With Povetkin being smaller his hooks will land first if they get into exchanges and Povetkin is good at jumping in and landing that left hook. If Whyte doesn’t stay disciplined and tries to go hook for hook with Povetkin I don’t think it will end well for him.