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Opinion

10 ideal fighters for bridgerweight

Oleksandr Usyk
Dave Thompson/Matchroom
These fighters would fit the bill for the WBC's proposed new bridgerweight division at 200-224lbs
  1. OLEKSANDR USYK
    As a former undisputed cruiserweight king, Usyk’s talent is not in doubt, but it remains to be seen whether he will be big enough to conquer the heavyweight division. He is made to measure for bridgerweight.
  2. DEONTAY WILDER
    With 41 of his 42 victories up at heavyweight coming inside the distance, just imagine the destruction that this ex-WBC champion could cause taking on opponents who weigh under 225lbs.
  3. ALEXANDER POVETKIN
    Last time out in August, dangerous veteran Povetkin scored a sensational knockout of top heavyweight contender Dillian Whyte. His weight for this fight was 224lbs – the bridgerweight limit.
  4. MICHAEL HUNTER
    Since moving up to heavyweight following an unsuccessful WBO cruiserweight title tilt against Usyk in 2017, Hunter’s average fighting weight has been 220lbs. He was unlucky to only draw with Povetkin in 2019.
  5. MAIRIS BRIEDIS
    Briedis cemented his standing as the premier cruiserweight on the planet by defeating Yuniel Dorticos in the World Boxing Super Series final in September. The three-time world titlist KO’d Manuel Charr in a 2015 heavyweight cameo.
  6. MURAT GASSIEV
    A previous unified cruiserweight champ, Gassiev jumped up a division after being beaten by Usyk in their 2018 WBSS final. He won his official heavyweight debut in just over 90 seconds in October.
  7. FILIP HRGOVIC
    This red-hot heavyweight prospect has scaled over 240lbs for his last three outings, but he came in at 225lbs as recently as 2019, so making bridgerweight would be no problem for him.
  8. HUGHIE FURY
    Fury’s two most recent bouts have seen him weigh substantially over the bridgerweight limit, but it was only in 2019 that the former WBO heavyweight title challenger weighed 224lbs when losing to Povetkin.
  9. BRYANT JENNINGS
    If Jennings was to hand-pick a specific weight that is most suited to his natural size, it could well be 224lbs. The ex-Wladimir Klitschko foe has been operating around that mark for his entire career.
  10. YUNIEL DORTICOS
    Dorticos’ second spell as a world cruiserweight ruler was ended by Briedis in September, but with his punishing power, “The KO Doctor” would fancy his chances of making an impact at bridgerweight.

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