News | Oct 09 2019

New opponent enlisted for Oleksandr Usyk on Saturday

Oleksandr Usyk will have his first professional fight at heavyweight on Saturday
Oleksandr Usyk
Ed Mulholland/Matchroom Boxing USA

OLEKSANDR USYK’S passage to heavyweight has not been straightforward. The excellent Ukrainian became the undisputed cruiserweight champion in 2018 and was due to box at heavyweight for the first time earlier this year, only to suffer an unfortunate injury himself.

On Saturday (October 12) his delayed bow at heavyweight will take place in Chicago. But once again he’s been beset by misfortune. He was going to fight Tyrone Spong but on the Tuesday of fight week it emerged that the former kickboxer had seen two urine tests return anti-doping violations. The Illinois State Athletic Commission will not license him to box and rescinded their approval of the bout with Usyk.

Chazz Witherspoon has been brought in as the replacement. The 38-year-old American has a 38-3 (29) record. Chazz might be the second cousin of Tim Witherspoon but he shouldn’t be a formidable opponent for Usyk. He lost by stoppage to Seth Mitchell in 2012, Tony Thompson halted him in 2009 and he was disqualified against Chris Arreola in 2008.


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