The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / Prospect Watch: Denys Berinchyk

Prospect Watch: Denys Berinchyk

Prospect watch
Berinchyk after his win over Juan Ocura

The least talked about medalist from Ukraine’s famous 2012 squad, the 29-year-old lightweight was the silver medal winner in London’s Summer Games, losing only to the excellent Cuban, Roniel Iglesias. He came up slightly short in the World Amateur Championships the year before, as well, dropping a 23-26 decision to Brazil’s Everton Lopes.

Those accomplishments were the pinnacle of a lengthy amateur run which K2 Promotions is hoping will translate into a successful professional one. So far all is well for the switch-hitting prospect. He has rung up 6 wins with 3 inside the distance, and against stiffer-than-usual competition. Four of these opponents had 28 bouts or more, one was undefeated (12-0), and none had losing records.

Berinchyk’s style can best be described as varied. He is known for many of the tools you see from his teammates—pulling his opponent’s glove down, using angles, going upstairs and down—but he is more aggressive than Usyk, Gvozdyk, Lomachenko, or Teslenko, generally coming forward the whole time in his contests. He compliments the pressure with an awkward slickness which utilizes an array of defensive postures, whether it is pinning his hands to his face, rocking his head from side to side, or adopting the Philly Shell. His foot movement can also get him out of harm’s way, or it can put him in it, as he shifts more than anyone I have seen, post-Dmitry Pirog. In light of the former excellent middleweight, if there is something the Krasnodon, Ukraine-native lacks, it is Pirog’s power. He doesn’t possess the hand-speed of his Olympic friends either.

The next foe on the way up the ladder is a Spanish up-and-comer promoted by for middleweight king, Sergio Martinez. Ismael Garcia holds a record of 8-1 (3 KO’s), his only loss being to Jon Fernandez, another Martinez prospect, and one worth watching. Garcia doesn’t possess Berinchyk’s background or schooling, so the word seems to be that Denys should earn another tally in the win column.

If he keeps ascending, a rough road at lightweight lays ahead. Linares, Garcia, Lomachenko, Davis and other may be atop the division in a few years. The Ukrainian might find the waters warmer up north, but a lot can change between now and a couple of years.

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