NEW YORK – Live world championship boxing returns to EPIX when undefeated 2004 Olympic super heavyweight gold medalist ALEXANDER POVETKIN and former World Boxing Association (WBA) heavyweight champion RUSLAN CHAGAEV square-off for the vacant WBA heavyweight title, Saturday, August 27th. Presented by Sauerland Event, the live broadcast will emanate from Erfurt, Germany.
The battle between the two highest world-rated heavyweight contenders will be televised live in the U.S. exclusively on EPIX, the multiplatform premium entertainment service. EpixHD.com will stream the fight live as part of a free two-week trial offer. The live broadcast and the live stream on EPIX and EpixHD.com, respectively, will begin with the main event at 5 p.m. ET / 2 p.m. PT.
Following the Povetkin-Chagaev WBA heavyweight championship, the broadcast and live stream will continue with undefeated World Boxing Organization (WBO) and WBA Intercontinental heavyweight champion ROBERT HELENIUS defending his regional titles against former WBO heavyweight champion SIARHEI LIAKHOVICH.
As has become the custom, EPIX will once again present the closed-captioned simulcast of both fights on a jumbotron in Times Square (Broadway between 44th and 45th Sts.), beginning at 5 p.m. ET.
Povetkin, Chagaev, Helenius and Liakhovich boast a combined record of 88-4-1 (58 KOs) – a 95% winning percentage and a victory by knockout ratio of 66%.
“EPIX looks forward to providing U.S.-based boxing fans exclusive live coverage of the Povetkin- Chagaev heavyweight title fight and presenting a preview of the heavyweight division’s next generation of world champions and title challengers,” said Travis Pomposello, EPIX senior executive in charge of boxing.
“I have won the Olympic gold medal and I have been World and European Amateur Champion. Now I want to finally accomplish my goal of winning the world title as a professional,” added Povetkin. “I have a lot of respect for Chagaev, but he will not get in my way.”
“Povetkin is a strong fighter, but I want to become world champion again and win back my old title. I am highly motivated,” said Chagaev.
Povetkin (21-0, 15 KOs), of Russia, is currently the WBA’s No. 2 world-rated heavyweight contender. His resume includes a knockout victory over former two-time heavyweight champion Chris Byrd, and unanimous decision victories over one-time heavyweight title challenger Eddie Chambers and former U.S. Olympians Jason Estrada and Larry Donald. Povetkin enters this fight having won three of his last four bouts by knockout. Povetkin has been promoted by Sauerland Event throughout his entire professional career.
Chagaev (27-1-1, 17 KOs), a native of Ukraine who fights out of Berlin, Germany, captured the WBA heavyweight title when he dethroned 7-foot defending champion Nikolai Valuev via a majority decision in April 2007. During his two-year, Chagaev successfully defended his title winning decisions over Matt Skelton (21-1) and Carl Drumond (26-0). Since losing to Wladimir Klitschko in 2009, Chagaev has defeated Kali Meehan and Travis Walker en route to becoming the WBA’s No. 1 heavyweight contender.
Helenius (15-0, 10 KOs), a native of Finland who fights out of Berlin, Germany, will be looking to make Liakhovich his third former heavyweight champion knockout victim having already starched Lamon Brewster and Samuel Peter in eight and nine rounds, respectively. He enters this fight having won nine of his last 10 fights by stoppage and world-rated No. 2 by the WBO and No. 3 by the International Boxing Federation (IBF).
Liakhovich (25-3, 16 KOs), a native of Belarus, fights out of Phoenix, Ariz. He won the WBO heavyweight championship in 2006, dethroning defending champion Lamon Brewster via a unanimous decision. He lost the title, in his first defense, to Shannon Briggs. Liakhovich enters this fight having won his last two fights by knockout against Jeremy Bates and Evans Quinn, in the first and the ninth round, respectively.
Mike Crispino, the voice of the New York Liberty, former undisputed World Heavyweight Champion Lennox Lewis and ESPN.com senior boxing writer Dan Rafael will be calling the fights for EPIX and EpixHD.com. Viewers watching the live stream on EpixHD.com will enjoy round-by-round blogs from Sports Illustrated’s boxing writer Chris Mannix.