Heavy-handed pressure fighter Artur Beterbiev will put his IBF and WBC light heavyweight titles on the line against once-beaten Marcus Browne at the Bell Centre, Montreal, Canada on Friday.
Beterbiev, who is rated No. 1 by The Ring at 175-pounds, knows his WBC mandatory challenger will be a difficult assignment.
“It’s a good fight and good challenge for me,” Beterbiev (16-0, 16 knockouts) told The Ring. “He’s a very good boxer; good technically, good counter-puncher and very fast.”
The 36-year-old Russian-born Montreal-based fighter won the IBF belt four-years ago. He has since fought just four times though was notably able to add the WBC title against Oleksandr Gvozdyk in October 2019.
“Yes, a little bit [frustrating] but this is out of my control,” acknowledged the former amateur standout. “I hope that will change for future.”
There has been talk amongst fans and media about potential fights with other light heavyweight titleholders Dmitry Bivol and Joe Smith Jr. as well as a mouth-watering clash with pound-for-pound king Canelo Alvarez.
However, Beterbiev is the consummate professional and is solely focused on the task in hand.
“I cannot think about this right now,” he said. “Browne deserves all my attention and I will take care of other fighters later.”
Browne represented America at the 2012 U.S Olympics before turning professional. The now 31-year-old scored impressive wins over Thomas Williams Jr. (KO 6), Sean Monaghan (KO 2) and Fracy Ntetu (KO 1) before securing a career best win over Badou Jack (UD 12). However, he was immediately stalled by Jean Pascal (TD 8).
The Staten Island native has since got back in the win column to take his record to (24-1, 16 knockouts).
Beterbiev vs. Browne plus supporting undercard will be broadcast on ESPN+ at 8:00 p.m. ET/ 5:00 p.m. PT.