Legendary trainer, commentator and fight analyst, Teddy Atlas, has shown his appreciation for one of boxing’s most underrated champions following a stellar performance last weekend.
Zhanibek Alimkhanuly became the unified middleweight champion this month with a sixth-round stoppage win over the IBF champion, Vincenzo Gualtieri, finishing a dominate display with an emphatic ending.
The southpaw claims to be one of the most avoided fighters in the sport as he pushes for either a mammoth payday with Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez or another unification clash against a fellow 160lbs champion in either Erislandy Lara or Jermall Charlo.
On his YouTube channel, Atlas said that he was impressed by the unbeaten Kazakh.
“Zhanibek, here’s what he is, he’s a big middleweight, with a tonne of amateur fights, very long arms, he’s a southpaw just to give you even more trouble to deal with him, he’s good, he’s damn good. He’s very pinpoint with his punches, technically solid and sharp.
“He’s very cautious and careful, but he doesn’t let it keep him from going when he has to go a little further. That’s his temperament, he is cautious and careful, he’s very accurate and he doesn’t waste anything. He goes to the body well, the thing is, when he did hurt the guy, he saw he could hurt him and he went into room, he didn’t just stay there and try and win a decision.
He was like a predator in a way, that you are supposed to be in a ring, where he tracked him down and he took the prey back to his cave. I like that, and I want to see some of that.”
Alimkhanuly now appears to have retracted a previous offer to fight Chris Eubank Jr as he aims to become the undisputed middleweight king.
Whoever the opponent he ends up with, Atlas predicts it will be a ‘hard night’ for them.