Marco Huck to fight Alexander Povetkin
Long-reigning cruiserweight titlist Marco Huck will move up to heavyweight for a shot against titleholder Alexander Povetkin, Sauerland Event promoter Chris Meyer told ESPN.com on Friday.
The fight is scheduled to take place Feb. 25 in Stuttgart, Germany.
"Yes, it is signed," Meyer said of the bout.
In August, Povetkin claimed a vacant belt -- created by the WBA as a way of generating additional sanctioning fees after Wladimir Klitschko unified titles by easily beating David Haye in July -- when he outpointed former titleholder Ruslan Chagaev. Povetkin (23-0, 16 KOs) made his first defense Dec. 3 when he knocked out American Cedric Boswell in eighth round.
Huck crashed Povetkin's news conference following his victory against Boswell in Helsinki, Finland and demanded a fight with Povetkin.
"I have defended my title eight times. I need a new challenge at heavyweight," Huck said after storming the podium.
Povetkin's response was: "Let's get it on."
Three weeks later Sauerland Event put it together.
Premium cable network Epix, which has carried Povetkin's last two fights, is finalizing a deal to broadcast the bout in the United States.
The 27-year-old Huck (34-1, 25 KOs) of Germany, made his most recent defense Oct. 22, scoring a sixth-round knockout of Rogelio Omar Rossi. He won his title via unanimous decision against Victor Emilio Ramirez in August 2009. In his first title opportunity, Huck suffered his only loss, a 12th-round knockout to American Steve Cunningham in 2007.
Huck and Cunningham are now both promoted by Sauerland Event and Cunningham would like to give him a rematch, but Sauerland has not shown any interest in making the bout. Besides, Huck stands to earn much more by moving up in weight to challenge the 27-year-old Povetkin, the 2004 Olympic super heavyweight gold medalist for Russia, who is trained by ESPN ringside analyst Teddy Atlas.
Only two cruiserweight titleholders have made the successful jump to heavyweight to win a title -- Evander Holyfield, who was undisputed cruiserweight champion before becoming the undisputed heavyweight champ, and David Haye, who was cruiserweight champion before winning a belt at heavyweight.
Dan Rafael covers boxing for ESPN.com. Follow him on Twitter.
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