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The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / Buatsi beats Richards, Hearn wants Bivol/Buatsi next

Buatsi beats Richards, Hearn wants Bivol/Buatsi next

A bridge too far?
Publish Date: 05/23/2022
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa
LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 21: Joshua Buatsi defeats Craig Richards for the WBA Light-Heavyweight World Title Eliminator at the Matchroom boxing fight night, The O2 Arena on May 21, 2022 in London, England. (Photo by Leigh Dawney/Getty Images)

A Bridge too far?

On Saturday Joshua Buatsi won a decision over Craig Richards by a fairly comfortable margin. After the fight Promoter Eddie Hearn suggested a fight with Dmitry Bivol could happen in the fall at the O2 Arena, Hearn also suggested that Canelo or Beterbiev could be soon for Buatsi. I never believe promoters and I do remember when Hearn said DAZN would never have a PPV fight, so it’s established that Hearn can be full of shit sometimes. Find the best bookmakers for betting on Boxing!

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Virgil Hunter is not so sure

Buatsi’s trainer Virgil Hunter does not seem as sure as Eddie Hearn that Buatsi is ready for Bivol, Canelo, or Beterbiev. He made his thoughts clear after Saturday’s fight.

Hunter said on Saturday “I can’t honestly say that right now,” Hunter said in the post-fight presser in response to a question concerning Buatsi’s readiness to face Alvarez or Bivol, “because being at the world title level there are just some things that I need to see, so I can’t honestly say that. But he (Buatsi) will always be in the fight. Trust me, he’ll always be there. I’m not saying that he would lose to Bivol or Canelo. So it seems Hunter would be much more comfortable fighting Canelo than Bivol and that makes sense since Canelo is really a 168lber and Bivol is at 175.

Bivol though seems to have Hunter a little wearier.

“I think he gives Canelo fits [and], on top of his physicality, would give Canelo fits and he would wear Canelo down,” Hunter said of Buatsi.

“Bivol does some things that I think that we should work on some more,” Hunter added. Check out the top new sportsbooks for betting on Boxing!

Hunter said he wants to get Buatsi in a position to make a stand at the elite level of the light heavyweight division. From what we saw on Saturday night I think that is a very plausible goal for Buatsi and I believe right now he is a top ten contender.

Hunter continued “[I want to make] him just complete and give him an opportunity to win a belt and keep a belt and not just fight for a belt and go back down,” Hunter said. “Win and get a belt and keep a belt.”

Suffice to say, Hunter has reservations about Buatsi facing some of the other dangerous titlists at 175 at the present moment, and who could blame him as Bivol and Beterbiev are beasts.

When Buatsi’s promoter Eddie Hearn floated the idea of Buatsi facing IBF and WBC light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev, Hunter offered a flabbergasted stare at Hearn.

“Why do you want to bring him down with you?” Hunter said.

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