Oleksandr Usyk won his heavyweight debut but can he beat the big boys?
15 October 2019 11:00
The undefeated cruiserweight champion stopped Chazz Witherspoon but he never looked like dropping himBy Jason Langendorf for The Queensberry RulesOleksandr Usyk, the cruiserweight champion turned heavyweight contender, is guided by two indomitable polar forces that he brings to bear with magnetic energy, a twinkle in the eye and a gap-toothed grin. He is part Conan the Barbarian, part Conan O’Brien. Both apex predator and Animaniac. Killer and comic relief. Usyk is the planet’s warmest, fuzziest bear trap.He won gold for Ukraine at the London Olympics in 2012, turned pro, then pulverised the 200-pound division into particle dust, becoming the first cruiserweight to hold all four major world titles. Eleven months after his last fight as a cruiserweight – his eight-round destruction of Tony Bellew in Manchester last November – Usyk (17-0, 13 KO) made his heavyweight debut in Chicago on Saturday against Chazz Witherspoon (38-4, 27 KO), a sloppy 38-year-old who took the fight as a last-minute replacement for Tyrone Spong, a third-rate opponent who returned an adverse doping test in the middle of last week. Related: Brilliant Oleksandr Usyk brings down the curtain on Tony Bellew Related: What I have learned from scoring 528 fights as a boxing judge | Karla Caputo Continue readingreadfullarticle