This time next week Artur Beterbiev could hold three of the four world light heavyweight titles and Britain’s Dan Azeez will have played a part in helping him get there.
The British light heavyweight champion worked with Beterbiev during preparations for his next fight against WBO world title holder Joe Smith Jr in New York.
BOXXER CEO Ben Shalom, who promotes Azeez, reported positive feedback from the Russian’s team about his man who embraced the challenge of working with one of the world’s most dangerous fighters.
Azeez told Sky Sports:
“I heard loads of stories about how he is in sparring and how demonic and brutal and savage he is.” “But I’ve always had this mentality that if you want to be the best you’ve got to mix it up with the best and I got the call to go out there and spar him, train with him, learn from him.”
“I was a bit nervous going into the unknown, but I was ready and prepared, it was such a brilliant experience.”
Beterbiev, the WBC and IBF champion, carries a menacing and intimidating presence which manifests itself in the ring as most of his 17 opponents to date will testify to. And Azeez had nothing but praise for the number one light heavyweight.
“He’s a savage in the ring, but an angel outside, I learned a lot from him. When I went out there, I realised there are levels but there are levels on levels.
“Artur is a brilliant fighter, he’s very very strong, very good boxing IQ as well. I can’t wait to watch the fight and see if he can pull off what he was practicing in the sparring and training.”
Read Boxing Social’s Beterbiev vs Smith article for all the details on how to watch, UK and US times and full undercard.