Danny Flexen looks at where the value is in a dangerous crossroads fight, Dillian Whyte vs Alexander Povetkin
Due to all the speculation regarding possible future fights between heavyweight kingpins Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder and their effect on the long wait Dillian Whyte has experienced for a shot at the WBC title, the Brixton “Body Snatcher’s” PPV headline clash with Alexander Povetkin, first scheduled for May, has been largely overlooked.
Now set for August 22 as the grand finale to Matchroom Boxing’s four-week Fight Camp series emanating from the back garden of the company office, Whyte vs Povetkin is not only now the biggest fight of the summer but a highly dangerous assignment for the Londoner if he has taken his eye off the ball.
Povetkin is being rather undervalued going into this must-win clash, predominantly as a result of his laborious draw with Michael Hunter in December. That night, on the Saudi undercard to Joshua’s redemptive victory over Andy Ruiz, the technically adept and powerful Russian had his moments but was never able to move into high gear against a speedy, smart adversary. The key question is whether Hunter was a bad style match for the 40-year-old former WBA king, who recently defeated Hughie Fury and gave Joshua problems before being stopped in 2018, or whether he cannot pull the trigger consistently over 12 rounds anymore.
Whyte, eight years the younger man and around his prime, should prove a more agreeable dance partner. He can box off a significantly improved jab and his ring generalship is admirable but, at his core, Whyte likes to trade and wage wars of attrition. This should be an entertaining scrap, at least until halfway, after which one or both men could start to tire. Each warrior boasts a potent left hook but Whyte may well carry his power late on.
Bettors need to be careful about putting their money down on Whyte vs Povetkin before checking all their options. Whyte is nearly a 1/4 favorite at some bookies and right around 1/3 at others, meaning bettors would have to risk $400 to win $100 at some sites, but just $300 at others. The underdog Povetkin ranges from 3/1 to around 5/2, which equates to about a 30% chance when converted using Sports Betting Dime’s odds converter. On a $100 bet, that’s a $50 difference in profit ($300 vs $250). That’s a difference worth starting a new account over.
The betting value is with Povetkin or, if you are sure Whyte will triumph, the method of victory option. I predict a Whyte late stoppage.