Sergei Liakhovich vs Deontay Wilder Preview Aug. 9
Former world heavyweight champion Sergei Liakhovich of Belarus will be taking on unbeaten American prospect Deontay Wilder on Friday Aug. 9 at the Fantasy springs Resort Casino in Indio, California in a 10-round bout that will be televised by the Showtime Network. Liakhovich’s last outing was against another top American prospect in Bryant Jennings in March of 2012 and came out on the losing end when his corner stopped the fight after the ninth round in Brooklyn, New York.
Liakhovich enters the ring with a record of 25-5 with 16 Kos. He’s now 37 years old and stands 6-foot4, meaning he’s three inches shorter than the 27-year-old Wilder and the American also has a 10-inch reach advantage. Liakhovich is a former WBO Heavyweight Champion and had a spectacular 145-15 record as an amateur. He won his title belt in a highly entertaining fight over Lamon Brewster in Cleveland in 2006 by a unanimous decision.
However, he lost his title in his first defence three months later when Shannon Briggs knocked him out in the last second of their bout in Phoenix. He’s also lost to Nikolai Vaulev (unanimous 12rd decision) and Robert Helenius (TKO 9) and has only fought seven times in the last eight years and has been stopped in his last two contests. He has decent power and can take a punch pretty well, but may have trouble with a skilled boxer, especially one with such a big reach and height advantage as Wilder.
Wilder, of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, has an impressive 28-0 record along with 28 Kos. He’s the only member of the American Olympic Boxing Team to take home a medal at the 2008 Games in Beijing, China as he won a bronze. He’s been skyrocketing up the rankings in the heavyweight division since turning pro shortly after the Olympics. He obviously has a lot of power in his fists, but since turning pro he’s faced the likes of Ty Cobb, Damon Reed, Marlon Hayes, Owen Beck, and Matthew Greer. His most impressive victory was arguably against Britain’s awful Audley Harrison, who he blew out in 70 seconds in Sheffield, England in April.
If Liakhovich sticks and moves from the outside and stays out of range he’s likely going to survive a few rounds. He likes to fight on the inside though and it’s going to be hard to get close to Wilder because of the 10-inch reach difference. Wilder also has an advantage in the speed department and the fight could resemble a matador and a bull, with the American playing the part of the matador. Liakhovich will have to keep moving forwards, be aggressive, get in Wilder’s face and turn the fight into a brawl. However, if the American picks him off with long-range jabs it’s going to be hard to make this an inside fight.
Liakhovich has the experience but has been quite inactive over the last half a dozen years or so and this is his first fight in about 16 months. Wilder would like to win this fight to make a name for himself in the heavyweight division, but he’s never been past the fourth round. If Liakhovich can take him into deep waters it’ll be interesting to see how Wilder performs. Liakhovich is older, shorter, slower, and doesn’t have as much power. Add in the physical advantages and it looks like cakewalk for Wilder, especially when you consider Jennings didn’t have much of a problem with the Belarusian. However, we don’t know how the American will react if and when he gets tagged on the chin. If he can handle it, then Wilder should take this bout by a relatively easy decision or second-half stoppage.
Sportsbook 5dimes.eu has the latest odds of a Liakhovich win at +1000 and a Wilder victory at -1500. Visit 5Dimes.eu to see up to date odds and to bet on this fight. You should also check out our recent boxing betting predictions to see how we’ve done of late capping the fights.