Dillian Whyte favored vs. Alexander Povetkin
On Saturday (3 p.m. ET, DAZN) in Gibraltar, 7 months after they at first satisfied, heavyweights Dillian Whyte and Alexander Povetkin will reunite in a crucial heavyweight clash.
Povetkin, a 2004 Olympic gold medalist and previous world champ, ended up being the interim WBC heavyweight champ on Aug. 22 when he captured Whyte with an ideal jab-uppercut mix at the start of the 5th round in Brentwood, England, and knocked him cold.
[Watch Povetkin-Whyte 2 on DAZN: Sign up now to stream the fight live]
This is among the unusual scenarios where the clear, persuading winner of the very first battle is a relatively considerable underdog in the rematch. At BetMGM, Whyte is a -400 preferred, with the 41-year-old Povetkin at +275.
Whyte by KO/TKO/DQ or technical choice is -165, while Whyte by choice is +350. Povetkin is +350 to win by KO and +1400 to win by choice.
That appears weird on the surface area, however when you dig a bit deeper, it is not. Whyte was plainly winning the very first bout and appeared to have actually taken each of the very first 4 rounds. He had 2 knockdowns in the 4th round, which he won by a 10-7 rating.
He was quicker, more reliable and in control of the battle.
Povetkin won the battle with that single mix. He’s an experienced fighter who has actually combated elite competitors, and though his finest days lag him, he still is knowledgeable and efficient in electrical minutes.
The secret here is that it wasn’t that Whyte faded, or slipped up, or did anything incorrect. It’s that Povetkin rose at a substantial minute and linked with the very best mix he’d landed, literally, in years.
So do you bank on that happening again?
Povetkin is 41 and is 2-1-1 in his last four fights. He got a disappointing draw with Michael Hunter on Dec. 19, 2007, and was knocked out by Anthony Joshua on Sept. 22, 2018.
He’s been slipping, and while he’s not completely faded and still has some fight left in him, he’s not the threat he was a few years ago.
The question those looking to back Whyte will have to address is his mental state. Do you lay nearly 4-1 on him knowing this is his first fight after getting KO had actually?
Whyte is a smart professional who has a number of solid battles available to him should he beat Povetkin. His only other defeat was by KO in 2015 to Joshua, and he responded by going unbeaten for almost five full years, covering 11 battles. He’s shown he can shake it off.
Povetkin can be dropped, however he’s as hard as they come and will continue to get up. So I like Whyte at +350 to win by choice. It will harm if he wins by knockout and I lose my bet when I have the winner, however it’s a huge distinction in between laying -400 and wagering the +350. I’m willing to bet that Whyte doesn’t get the KO and if he does, I’m not out a substantial quantity.
More from Yahoo Sports:
Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.