Ricards Bolotniks vs Oleksandr Gvozdyk Preview May 6th, 2023
Former WBC Light Heavyweight Champion Oleksandr Gvozdyk of Ukraine is back in the ring for just the second time since 2019 when he takes on Ricards Bolotniks of Latvia this Saturday, May 6th. The 10-round bout from Mexico can be seen live in most nations on DAZN on the undercard of the Canelo Alvarez vs John Ryder battle. Bolotniks last saw action last April of last year when he beat Hrvoje Sep via an eight-round unanimous decision. Gvozdyk started his comeback in February when he beat Josue Obando via a six-round unanimous decision.
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Bolotniks vs Gvozdyk Betting Odds
* Ricards Bolotniks +600
* Oleksandr Gvozdyk -1000
The 36-year-old Gvozdyk enters the ring with a mark of 18-1 with 14 Ko’s and stands 6-feet-2-inches with a 75.5-inch reach. He fights out of Oxnard, California and has 104 rounds under his belt since turning pro in 2014. The Ukrainian isn’t really known as a power puncher or one-punch knockout artist, but you’d never know it since his knockout ratio currently stands at a very impressive 73.7 His biggest wins have come against Adonis Stevenson, Tommy Karpency, Otis Griffin, Yunieski Gonzalez, Nadjib Mohammedi and Isaac Chilemba.
Gvozdyk won the bronze medal at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, England, is a three-time Ukrainian amateur national champion and also fought in the World and European Championships as well as in the World Series of Boxing. He’s also captured the NABF, and WBO NABO Light Heavyweight Titles since turning pro. Gvozdyk captured the WBC Light-Heavyweight Title in December, 2018 when he stopped Adonis Stevenson in the 11th round.
He defended it against Doudou Ngumbu four months later when Ngumbu suffered a calf injury in thee fifth round and couldn’t continue. Gvozdyk then lost the belt and his first pro fight when IBF Champion Artur Beterbiev halted him in the 10th round in October, 2019 while Gvozdyk was ahead on two of the three scorecards. He then walked away from the sport for about three-and-a-half-years and returned to the ring just a couple of months ago when he beat Obando. His chin is relatively solid, but Karpency dropped him in the first round in 2016 and Beterbiev stopped him decisively.
Bolotniks is 32 years old enters the fight with a record of 19-6-1 with 8 Ko’s and has fought 147 rounds since turning pro in 2013. He’s not the most powerful puncher in the division as his current knockout ratio stands at just 30.8 per cent and he doesn’t own the greatest chin either as he’s been stopped in four of his six losses. Bolotniks measures 6-feet-1-inch tall and unfortunately has an unlisted reach so gives up an inch in height to Gvozdyk.
Bolotniks’ was stopped twice in his first four pro outings as Abel Mikaelyan halted him in the third round in 2013 in his second fight and Andreas Evangelou stopped him in the fourth round two bouts later. He was also stopped by Thabisco Mchunu in the sixth round in 2018 and by Joshua Buatsi in the 11th round last year. Bolotniks also dropped a six round unanimous decision to Kevin Buval in 2015 and an eight-round split decision to Micki Nielsen in 2018. His lone draw was a six-round affair with Pascal Villeneuve in 2015.
The biggest wins in Bolotniks’ career have been against Jarek Prusak, Cesar Cordoba, Alejandro Valori, Patrick Mendy and Gasan Gasanov. He won the vacant Eurasian Boxing Parliament Light Heavyweight Title in October, 2019 with a unanimous decision over Sergei Ekimov. Two months later he captured the WBO European Light Heavyweight Belt by stopping Steven Ward in the first round and has defended it with a 10-round unanimous nod over Hosea Burton and a 10th-round TKO over Serge Michel.
Bolotniks usually falls just short when stepping up in class but is a good European-level boxer. Gvozdyk, who has recently been used as a sparring partner by Canelo Alvarez and Gilberto Ramirez, used to be a world class boxer but he’s now 36 years old and was out of the ring for over three years, so it’s hard to tell what he has left. If he’s anything like he used to be though, he should have the skills and power to handle Bolotniks. Even after his long layoff, I’m going with Gvozdyk here.
Gvozdyk should still have the power and skills to earn a win.
Play: Oleksandr Gvozdyk -1000 @ BetOnline.ag
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