Artur Beterbiev has vowed to prove himself “the best” and his latest blunt victory could put him on an unlikely collision course with Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez.
Beterbiev maintained his brutal record of being the only world boxing champion with a 100% knockout record by stopping Marcus Browne on Friday night.
He was forced to survive a shocking cut, which briefly tempted the referee to end the fight, to retain his IBF and WBC light heavyweight titles.
“We are ready for any battle,” he said about his future.
“We are ready for the best: to be the best, you have to beat the best.
“I feel good. We have won the battle.
“This gash is just another experience in my career.
“This is boxing and you never know what can happen.”
Beterbiev is among the possibilities for boxing superstar Canelo, whose options for his next opponent transcend weight divisions.
Canelo is already a four-weight world champion and holds the undisputed super-middleweight title after a breathtaking 11-month spell in which he ended the unbeaten records of three reigning title holders.
He was granted permission by the WBC to enter a fifth division and challenge cruiserweight champion Ilunga Makabu.
However, Beterbiev’s reputation as one of boxing’s most fearsome fighters makes him an outstanding candidate for Canelo.
Canelo has already entered the light heavyweight division once to knock out Sergey Kovalev.
Top Rank’s Bob Arum, who promotes Beterbiev, said Sky Sports that Canelo is interested in making the fight happen: “I know he would.
“He showed me interest.
“Some will say that Beterbiev is too big and powerful. Others will say that Canelo is special and can handle everyone.
“It is one of the greatest fights in boxing.”
Sky Sport Boxing Program
Saturday 29 January – BOXXER in Cardiff
Chris Eubank Jr versus Liam Williams
Claressa Shields vs Ema Kozin – IBF, WBA and WBC middleweight titles
Saturday 19th February – BOXXER in Manchester
Amir Khan vs Kell Brook
Saturday 26 February – Top Rank in Glasgow
Josh Taylor vs Jack Catterall – undisputed superlight titles