Vitali Klitschko

Vitali Klitschko – Amateurish?

by Fran on March 18, 2012

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Whether you like the way Vitali Klitschko boxes or not, you have to admit the he and his brother Wladimir have pretty much dominated the Heavyweight division for 10 years or so.  Their boxing style is not to the taste of many, but I would argue that they are both very effective at what they do and as such command great respect.  This effectiveness is no fluke, it is the result of their classical boxing education within the Ukrainian amateur boxing system.  Many of the skills they learned back in their amateur days are still very evident in their respective styles.

This article focuses the boxing style of Vitali Klitschko as demonstrated in his 2 round demolition of Canadian Kirk Johnson, back in 2003.  I’ll point out a number of style characteristics that I think perfectly show the effectiveness of Vitali’s style and how these characteristics can be tied back to the skills demonstrations on this site.

Here’s the video, the fight begins at around 11.55:

The Phased Attack

Firstly, look at how far in front of the line of his head that Klitschko has his lead foot. This is down to two main factors. Firstly, he has a very wide stance and secondly he spends much of his time with his body weight on the back foot. This means that Vitali is able control range really effectively.

So, how does this ‘control of range’ show itself?  Look at around 12.05 and how Klitschko moves in and out whilst punching. This is known as a ‘phased attack’, where you strike move out to avoid counters only to power back in and throw more shots. It requires a good understanding of range and efficient and explosive foot movements. This is the ultimate demonstration of counter punching and if you are a member of the Boxing Training Foundation you will be very familiar with this concept.

Next, watch how often Vitali feints his jab and combines this with a lay back. This is another method of applying the phased attack principle and is a must for all boxers, especially those who are tall for their weight. Look around 12.25 for a clear example.  Used properly a tall boxer can keep a shorter opponent on the end of his shots all night long.

Simple and Precise

If Vitali Klitschko isn’t jabbing here, he’s feinting the jab (if you’ve not done so, check out the video article on feinting in boxing). This basically means that Johnson ALWAYS has something to concern himself with. And the jab is used to set up the majority of Klitschko’s attacks. See 12.58 for Vitali using the jab/lay back/jab looking primarily to set up that straight right hand/right cross. This also tells us that Klitschko is a cautious fighter, maximizing his physical advantages over his opponents. Very smart.

Taking the next logical step, look at the perfectly executed straight right hand to the body at 14.41. I have produced video article on the site on long range body punching. If you want the ideal demonstration of a right hand to the body as described in my video, this is it right here. Simple skills executed with masterful precision.

Be Practical

The potential weakness in Vitali Klitschko’s style is his up close work. But he is quite practical in how he deals with this. He knows that smaller guys will hold the physical advantages when up close. So, rather than risk becoming second best on the inside, he simply smothers the opponent. He aims to land shots on the way in and on the way out, but does not look to partake in many exchanges of short range shots, preferring instead to get back to his comfort zone of long range.

Into the 2nd round, and from about half way through (around 17:37 onwards), Klitschko can sense the end. But, he doesn’t get wild. Some of the right hooks he’s looking to land are real power shots. The mainstay of his work remains the jab/lay back after which he looks to bomb with the right hand. Vitali occasionally leads with a long range left hook, but until the final stages of the round he sticks firmly with the simple (and safe) long range straight shots.

The Execution

Vitali Klitschko, in common with the classic Eastern European style, thrives on having the room to throw big shots. If you give him space he will land on you all night long. Even when he has Kirk Johnson on the ropes (18:07) he maintains distance, landing enough shots to force Johnson to the canvas. The finish at 18:37 is impressive, with Vitali even bringing an impressive display of body punching with the right hook to the body off the jab. Clinical and impressive.

Amateur Vs Pro

So there we have it, yet another demonstration of how classically executed amateur boxing skills are being used to very good effect by Vitali Klitschko. I have read on many forums this principle that some people talk about the amateur boxing style in purely derisory terms, and I have to say, it does make me roll my eyes.

There is no doubt that some boxers are more suited to the professional game than the amateur code, regardless of the success they may or may not have had at amateur level.  It’s also true to say that the amateur and pro game are very different propositions for any number of reasons.  However, great boxing skills are great boxing skills, whether the boxer wears a singlet/vest or not.

Adaptations must be made when at pro level, primarily looking to land heavy shots in combinations and translating lots of foot movement to lots of body movement.  But a boxer who changes to the professional ranks continues to benefit from his or her amateur-taught skills for the rest of their career.  They simply layer upon that skill a host of other capabilities and techniques that go to make the complete fighter.

Agree? Disagree? Let me know in the comments section.

Cheers

Fran

 

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{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

Alex September 28, 2013 at 10:28 pm

Hi Fran, sorry about that previous Comment. That should all have ended with ‘Hope I stuck to the point,,,, and size matters’. Would be glad if you could edit that, or withdraw whole thing. Hope UR good and well. AlexL

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Alex September 28, 2013 at 10:18 pm

Fran, I’m ‘gonna stick my chin out’ here. Sure that my defence is good. No problem with Vitali, nor with his basic, very basic, long range style – nor of him being a big Champ among the mainly, ‘average sized contenders’ in his group. Accepting that ‘Tyson Furey’ and a few other big guys like himself are are looming.

I am all for ‘long rangers’ – but I would not rate Vitali’s skills in that genre very high. In this fight, it was his 5 inch height advantage, 2.5 inch reach advantage, and much longer legs/stance that won the fight. A big advantage. And Johnson couldn’t get near him, although his ‘big swing haymaker’ came close a few times.

On the plus side though, as you say, Vitali’s Jab, Layback, Feinting, in out, single countering, closing down, and ring craft, was very competent – and when he got Johnson on the wobble, with little coming back, he finished him of very efficiently. Superior power. Nothing flashy, or breathtaking, and consistent with his upbringing in Eastern European Gyms.

So what do I think Vitali lacks. And what makes for a ‘flashy exceptional long range fighter’. All the above yes. But in addition, firstly, the lead hand, jab, ‘single counter’, has to have more than one or two weights. Not just a feeler, or a heavy prod, but also a ‘lightning stinger that explodes on the target’, with KO or leg melting potential. And secondly, ‘multi hand counters’ need to be more than a ‘one two over combination’, but, more like 3, 4, or 5, over, under, and up. And I didn’t see Vitali doing any of that, or looking capable of doing so.

And that as I see it, boiling it down to basic stereotype styles, is the main difference between Eastern and Western Boxing. Between flashy and boring. The Easterners excel on basic guard, and defences, and then depend on super fitness and aggression to carry the day. While the Westerners, get the basics, hopefully will be fit, and aim to outshine on fancy skills, and combinations. That’s where all the greats have sprung from

This is a conclusion, I have taken, mainly, from observing the excellent Amateur Boxing scene around Europe of present. Which gives much scope to compare East and West styles. And as it seems to me, over 3 or 4 rounds, where it is hard to split the two boxers, the Eastern style is all too often getting the result. Based on being the most aggressive, over a skilled back peddling counter puncher. When the defining factor is supposed to be ‘command of the ring’.

And had some of these fights been over 6 or 8 rounds, I do wonder if the result would have been different. With skills, such as ‘slipping, ducking, countering and back stepping’, triumphing over sapping aggression’.

Hope I stuck to the point. Vitali style, has its merits, but not so great in my mind. And lets recognise ‘size does count’.

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Fran September 30, 2013 at 8:12 pm

Hi Alex

I hope that you are well. I have edited the last bit of your comment, but would not dream of removing it! Are you kidding! Some really well observations borne of studying the game. Some will agree with what you say, some won’t. For me pretty much all of what you say is on the money. It’s a fact that the more aggressive boxer who commands the ring will get the decision when the number of shots landed is about equal. It’s that bit about ‘leading off’, initiating the engagement. In judging a bout it seems to matter more. That’s not to say though that judges don’t recognise the other stuff so I always like to coach it.

I love to see variety, front foot or back foot. However, I’m just as happy for a boxer to work with a basic style even if that means slamming home one-twos, especially if it leads to success.

Great comment Alex, thanks for taking the time.

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Viktor September 19, 2013 at 11:14 am

Forgot to say- thank you, Fran and all other guys for interesting article and comments!

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Fran September 22, 2013 at 8:42 pm

You’re welcome Viktor. You make a fantastic contribution.

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Viktor September 19, 2013 at 10:19 am

Sorry, my crap spellchecker changed my words.
I wanted to say – not a big class but it works . And that vladimir also has problems with adaptation when things go wrong . And vitaly can dealeasily with his opponentse without dirty tricks.
Viktor

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Viktor September 19, 2013 at 10:07 am

Hi,Fran
Interesting review , but i’ll be disagree.
I know many will say that i’m wrong, but i think that it’s vladimir’s style that can be qualifated as european,but not vitaly’s

My argument is that they both started with like teophilo stivensonstyle, used in fact with different variations by many tall sovietic boxers,as great boris lagutin. Vladimir vas more technical and vitaly was like a kind of slugger without hooks.
Now,my pointis that approximativly after 2008 vitaly’s style has changed, and became much more american, more lennox looking that stivenson looking. He has more counterpunch now, uses more hooks and uppercuts. He’s counterpunch tactics now is much more based oni the fake openings, feints, that on the jabs, as vladimir way.

So you’re right when you talk about old time vitaly,but wrong about modern vitaly.
I’d like to say that i’m always surprised that young klichko is rated much higher thank the old one, because vladimir appears to me like someonewho doing greatly what he knows. He becameinvincible only after start to klinch any time opponent get to the middle or close distamce.thanks to Emmanuel stewart, i believe. not ab bigband class but it works .he also has problems with adaptation oft things god wrong. Vitaly never need to klichko this way . In fact he’s 2 losses are tko’s in the fights that he coud win.
By the way,in last few fightsvladimir start to use similar to vitaly style.
Imho, vitaly is one of greatest heavyweight professional boxers, don’t have alot of amator left
Cheers
Viktor

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Fran September 22, 2013 at 8:40 pm

Great comment Viktor and I reckon that you are correct.

What I need to do is reinstate a video for this article then post a more recent contest. This will allow us to maybe look at how a top fighter develops and learns his trade as you have pointed out here.

Thank you.

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Anonymous December 30, 2012 at 10:43 am

Hi Fran,
here is some more about Igor, it’s all in Russian and it only comes up if you spell his name right in Russian:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hzn9sXperFA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3tuGzQQ9n_M&feature=endscreen
In the beginning of part 1 and at 10.05 of Part 2 there is good boxing footage. The rest is an account of his exploits, and he has a boxing club to his name in Moscow. There is no available footage of his fights with Stevenson, the Cubans have it and they released only part of the first fight. Russian fans are irate about the lack of any recordings of these fights. Igor explains he used a right cross-jab-right cross combo to put Stevenson down and out in their second fight.

They called him “the Soviet Professional”, which wasn’t such a good thing back then and they were not very proud of his brawler style. You had to win the national championship to fight internationally, that’s why he is so little-known. They let him fight abroad mainly in the USA-USSR team contests where he regularly KO-ed his opponents. He became a champion of the USSR only once in 1978, he knocked everybody out and they couldn’t give the points to the more stylish amateurs as usual. They kept him down but he was an all-time fan favorite and a feared opponent. Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Russia and 11 other countries competed for one spot in every division, so becoming a Soviet champion was sometimes harder than becoming a champion of the world. The heavyweight limit back then was 81 kg.

After the fall of the iron curtain there were talks of a fight b/n the young Tyson and Vysotsky who was 9 years into retirement, but Cus D’amato died and the communication was lost.

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Fran January 6, 2013 at 6:25 pm

Ivan

Sorry for the delay in replying. Two things. I should have made more effort to learn Russian as I’m sure that there are one or two nuggets of really helpful information in those clips. The starting right hand over the top to get the American in trouble was text book. Whilst his hands are low he still made the American fall short. Second thing, having watched that snippet I’m desperate to watch more. The Soviet era fighters had to co-me up through probably the most competitive amateur boxing set up the World has ever known, and I include the Cubans in this. To represent USSR meant that you had truly reached the top of the tree.

Great little clip Ivan, thanks. I like the Russian fight fans feel slightly saddened that I can’t see the Stevenson fights. Who knows though, maybe time will see them surface.

Thanks Ivan.

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Ivan December 26, 2012 at 2:50 pm

There is a common misconception (or propaganda) that the Klitchkos rule a weak division. This weak era of heavyweight boxing has supposedly afflicted us because boxing is losing talent to other lucrative sports (American football, baseball, basketball, MMA). But today’s heavies are bigger and physically stronger than ever, in fact there seems to be a whole new weight class above heavyweight. Top contenders have better boxing technical skills than ever and all have a modern, effective style.
The best or “strongest” era would have been the Ali-Foreman-Frazier rivalry. Real gems of fighters who are famous for mainly fighting each other, for the lack of other big names in a great era. The favorites of the likes of Larry Merchant and Berth Sugar who form people’s opinion of boxing.
One big problem during that era – the iron curtain. It kept USSR, East European and (almost forgot) Cuban boxers away from pro boxing. Teofilo Stevenson alone would have been an era. There were guys like Igor Vysotsky, a Soviet heavy (187 pounds or 85 kg, a small heavyweight), the only man to beat T. Stevenson twice, the second time by KO. He also KO-ed Tony Tubbs, the future WBA champ. This guy gave a heinous beating to the one and only Muhammad Ali in an exhibition match – it’s on Youtube, Ali later explained in an interview he was out of shape. That’s the only reason we’ve heard of Igor, he didn’t get the memo Cubans were friends so he Ko-ed Stevenson and he didn’t get the other memo Ali came as friend to help Soviet propaganda, so he beat the daylights out of him too. And this guy became a champion of the USSR only once in his career, the competition was that fierce.
One day Vitali will be appreciated for what he’s worth and he’ll be up there where he belongs – with the greatest legends of boxing. After all the screaming about a Great White Hope, all of a sudden two of them came true and caught the main stream literally off guard.
This can go on and on, but I’ll continue my rant on the Wladimir Klitschko article if you don’t mind, he deserves credit too..

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Fran December 29, 2012 at 6:24 pm

Ivan

Perfectly reasonable rant from my point of view. I have a number of theories around the heavyweight division and it’s relative competitiveness when compared to the other divisions. I do agree though, the brothers can in my opinion be rightly held up against the best heavies in the history of the sport. Regardless of the strength or otherwise of the current heavies, the simple truth is that if these guys boxed with the stars and stripes on their shorts I’m sure that their reputations would have been cemented a long time ago.

Now, I’m off to find out some more about Igor Vysotsky. Thanks for the heads up.

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Jamie December 14, 2012 at 4:25 pm

Fran,
I’m very new to boxing and find your articles shed so much light on the sport for me. I was a kickboxing fan before I got into boxing so I had seen Vitali’s kickboxing matches long before his boxing matches. Forgive me for this facile question, but as a trainer do you find that its hard or easy to change certain tendencies in the stance and the guard of a kickboxer crossing over into boxing?

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Fran December 15, 2012 at 11:33 pm

Hey Jamie

Very interesting question. I’ve had opportunity to work with many kick boxers over the year. The most fundamental element to change is the ‘square on’ stance that kick boxers possess (shoulders ‘open’ rather than pointing toward the opponent and the back foot much more ‘off-set’ to the front foot. The square on stance doesn’t translate well to amateur boxing where explosive foot movement is vital. Check out the boxing stance article and the comments, should be something in there to help.
Cheers for the question Jamie.

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frank July 7, 2012 at 4:55 am

you have made comments on some thing I have noticed for a long time . manny stewart also has commented on the same things you are talking about in the fight between vitali and adamack so you are in good company when you and manny stewart are observing the same thing in a fighter good luck

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Fran July 11, 2012 at 1:46 pm

Thanks Frank, glad the article was enjoyable for you.

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frank July 7, 2012 at 4:49 am

vitali would have beaten tyson vitali chin is iron never saw the guy hurt .I dont know if wld chin would have held up tyson first 20 kos were on tv and I dont belive there was a full time fighter among them .tyson looked the best against sub par to good fighters . but when he got in with the best he fell apart douglas moved all around him and koed him tyson was 23 yrs old he went to jail came out beat some decent fighters looked good then got in with holyfield and was koed got back in the ring with holyfeild and got dis qualified on purpose koed a few more decent fighters and was destroyed by lennox lewis who was about the same age as tyson . i also many weakness in tyson before his loss to douglas he couyld be tied up fairly easily bone crusher smith did it smith just didnt hit tyson from long range until the 11 rd he had a hell of a time with razor ruddock a guy lennox lewis koed in 1 tommy morrison koed ruddick in four rudduck gave tyson hell. james quick tillis had lost about 3 of his last 5 fights and weigged under 200 lbs but his movement gave tyson a hard time if tyson didnt get a guy out early he slow down and start throwing 1 shot at a time tony tucker a good tall fighter went the distance with tyson and gave him a great deal of trouble . when people think of tyson kos most remember hiis first 20 fights now I would never call any one who gets in the ring a bum but most of those guys were not ful time fighters they were bartenders and plumbers cowboys and there the great percent of mike tyson kos

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Fran July 11, 2012 at 1:45 pm

You have quite a knowledge of the sport Frank, some good points made there. As to whether Iron Mike would have beaten Vitali we’ll never know. During the earlier part of his career my own view is that Tyson would have beaten any heavyweight ever. By the time Douglas got to him his lifestyle and training methods had disintegrated. In real terms there was no coming back from that for him.

None of this though detracts from my admiration for the Ukrainian brothers. They’ve dominated for many years and are highly effective operators who are always worth watching. Very good role models too.

Thanks for the comment Frank.

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Paul Smith April 2, 2012 at 12:48 pm

This was a very good article Fran and the excellent comments were also very much appreciated.

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Fran April 3, 2012 at 8:37 pm

Thanks Paul, and you’re welcome.

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Fran March 24, 2012 at 5:23 pm

Some good points Ivan as usual. Against Trinidad I think De La Hoya made a monumental tactical mess up. His reason, according to his book, was that his trainers were convinced that Trinidad was too dangerous for De La Hoya to mix it with him. Maybe that was ‘amateurish’ in the ‘amateurish’ sense.

On another point, I suppose how you define ‘warrior’ dictates the position here. I’m sure that neither of us would suggest that Ali and De La Hoya were not involved in some wars where caution was thrown to the wind and raw fighting took place, in particular Ali. Taking part in such battles (and winning them) I’m sure qualifies them as warriors. My one thing about Wlad is that we have yet to see him being drawn into such a confrontation, either down to the quality of his opponents or his approach to defeating those opponents. Absolutely he’s a warrior, but maybe in life the glory goes to those warriors who have had to, out of necessity, resorted to slugging it out and surviving on pure will. One thing is for sure, Wladimir Klitschko is an absolute winner and I will continue to enjoy watching him dismantle the opposition.

Great comment there Ivan

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Dave Waterman March 21, 2012 at 11:01 pm

I would have to take issue with the comment that Muhammad Ali was amateurish (like the Klitschkos).

Ali was absolutely renowned for his unorthodox style….for his inability to conform to the basic, amateur boxing expectation. His jab was thrown from waist level as a flick rather than from the shoulder as a ramrod. He regularly leaned away placing his balance off kilter and he fired shots while on the move rather than when set.

Ali wrote a rule book of his own and it was based on his innate ability. It had nothing to do with the teachings of a coach from the amateur code.

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Fran March 22, 2012 at 10:31 pm

Associated interesting point from me Dave, if a little obvious. Just finished Oscar De La Hoya’s biography. It’s a little bit “Golden Boy Promotions”, but there are some decent little insights. One of the most interesting I found was how much he struggled to adjust his style to the computerized scoring in the run up to the ’92 Olympics. American boxing is an ‘end to end’ process. Kids are very likely to start up in a gym alongside Pros. So, they are likely to pick up traits of the Pros, one being masses of blinding combinations and another being free-flowing body movement. That’s exactly what De La Hoya was as a boxer. But, this worked against him and his American team-mates, and has done since. As you know, modern amateurs are about single and double shots so that the judges have time to press their button. Even the Cubans have adjusted to this type of fighting. US amateurs are groomed for the Pros and as a consequence have probably been less successful in the amateurs during the last 20 years than in the 20 prior to that. But, they continue to produce the apex fighters in the Pro game.

Pros and amateurs training side by side is happening a little more nowadays in Europe. The stand up, singles and doubles coupled with speedy footwork that are a signature of our amateurs may be influenced by that change, who knows. De La Hoya for one was really happy to turn Pro, so that he could go back to steady feet and powerful combinations. Maybe if we can jump ahead 10 years to see where it goes.

Cheers for the viewpoint on ‘The Greatest’ Dave. Take care

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Ivan March 20, 2012 at 3:28 pm

If Klitschko is amateurish, then it’s a good thing to be amateurish, a compliment. So were Muhammad Ali and Oscar De La Hoya. Some go as far as saying that pro boxing is a different sport, meaning conditioning and strategy are so different. Occasionally good amateurs stumble in the pro ranks, but most great pros have good amateur experience, without the amateur base it is too hard.

Klitschko is too professional, in and out of the ring. He never talks trash, always a gentleman, and fights too clean, almost clinically. There are some resemblances with the amateur school in his style – wide stance, long range work with straight punches, start and finish an attack with the jab. Things that suit his physique and hand speed.

The main adjustment he has made is that unlike amateurs, he plants his feet when he punches. Even when he throws a jab he is flat footed, that’s why he kicks like mule with every punch. He also keeps his hands low, fighting without a guard, and this would give fits to any decent amateur coach. Overconfident? No, a necessity with his height.

Amateurish – anything but. As rare as they are with the amateurs, KOs make amateur officials and coaches frown, and Klitschko had the highest KO ratio in history before the fight with Chisora.

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Fran March 20, 2012 at 10:35 pm

Being some one who loves amateur boxing, I absolutely agree with you Ivan.

It’s a great comment actually, a reality check. I am just working on a Wladimir article (my favourite of the brothers) and this will be ready tomorrow. I would be quite confident recommending to any of the boxers that I work with to look at the Klitschko brothers and the style they employ. It’s practical and it works. They control range superbly, Wladimir being most exceptional at this particular skill. I will always be more captivated by fighters operating lower down the weight categories, but as far as Heavies go I think that the brothers bring a lot to the show and can be used as good technical and personal role models for the younger generation of fighters.

Really good comment Ivan, thanks.

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Fran March 19, 2012 at 10:20 pm

Hey Dave, hope you’ve recovered from your recent yomping episode. Of course you are right, the Heavyweight scene has been pretty depressing, particularly in recent years. It has to be said though, since the mid 80’s the Heavyweight scene has been fairly sparse in terms of ‘strength in depth’ to use a football term. Aside from Tyson (unquestionably a boxing high point), Holyfield and Lennox Lewis (again not everyone’s cup of tea) and one or two others, we haven’t been treated to many highly anticipated match ups. But the current crop, in particular over the last 5 years or so, has been particularly miserable. I did notice that all of your examples of crowd-pullers are, well, not Heavyweights. The two that I would have paid to see, Tyson and Holyfield, showed the characteristics of the lighter weights. I have a natural disinclination to the Heavyweight scene, preferring like most I guess to focus on the brilliance displayed lower down the weights and maybe this colours my judgement unfairly on the heavies.

Your observation around ticket sales is absolutely key here as well. I guess that the German public want wins, nothing much else. Sven Ottke, Felix Sturm, Marcus Beyer etc all defended their titles in Germany and all held titles for periods of time measured in geological terms. Was it the kind of boxing that you, I or many in the wider boxing fraternity would wish to watch. No, not really. But our Teutonic cousins want winners by hook or by crook.

I do think that the Klitschkos, particularly Wladimir, bring something a bit more watchable than their adoptive country men named above. 50 KOs in 57 fights is a good finishing rate, and he can only put away what’s put in front of him. But, at it’s core, I am sure that you speak for many in not being particularly inspired by the Brothers. They know what they got though and they use it well.

Thanks Dave, great comment as usual

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tom March 19, 2012 at 10:54 am

Hello Fran,
thanks for recent articles concerning some amateur vs pro style differences. I still hope for a comprehensive article in the future though:).
As noted elsewhere on your site, I also believe watching top amateurs can be more heplful for learning lots of top skills. And it can be really exciting, too! Let’s take Mario Kindelan…
Looking forward to reading more about amateur boxing and boxers:)
Thank you
tom

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Fran March 19, 2012 at 10:24 pm

I feel a series of articles coming on Tom, thanks for the suggestion, I’ll come up with something.

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TcB234 March 19, 2012 at 1:24 am

I agree with your analysis Fran. Johnson had the right idea though with jabs, hooks and bolo right hands to overcome Klitschko’s reach and low left hand in his quest to get inside Klitschko’s defence. As you pointed out, Klitschko’s method of keeping Johnson at bay and tying him up effectively nullified Johnson’s ability to work inside. Being overweight and apparently out of shape didn’t help his cause.
I also agree with Dave’s comments re: heavyweight division. Short of another Lennox Lewis the style most likely to beat the Klitschkos is a fighter-puncher in the template of Mike Tyson or Joe Frasier with constant head movement that will be enable the fighter to get inside the Klitschkos and unleash power punches from all angles.

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Fran March 19, 2012 at 10:23 pm

Great point. I’m just writing an article on Wlad (for a balance) and your point on the vulnerabilities of the Klitschko style and the type of fighter that could nail it is very interesting. His lead hand extension (more pronounced than his brother’s) could for all it’s benefits be a major Achilles heel.

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