By Luke Furman
Olympic gold medal winner Alexander Povetkin (34-2, 24 KOs), 39-years-old, is going to have two more fights at most, before retiring for good from the sport.
Back in September, Povetkin took part in what was likely his final world title shot - and he was knocked out in seven rounds by WBO, WBA, IBF, IBO heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua at Wembley Stadium in London.
Povetkin previously held the WBA's "regular" heavyweight title at the weight. His only other defeat came at the hands of Wladimir Klitschko, by decision, in 2013.
Povetkin's promoter, Andrei Ryanbinsky, is fully backing his boxer's decision.
“We have discussed this with Alexander and agreed that he would hold one or two more fights and then we would end his (career),” Ryabinsky said by phone to Vasily Konov.
“We are not yet ready to discuss any names of future opponents, but what I can say is that the fight with Joshua made a very serious impression on the English fans. They were impressed that Alexander was so brave and the way he fought. The fighters who fight to the end are very valuable throughout the world.
"We thought that it was time to end his career, but the organizers in England began a conversation with us about having one or two more fights, because there was a very high demand to see Alexander again. So we’ll do some more."
World Boxing Council President Mauricio Sulaiman sees nothing wrong with Povetkin deciding to continue his career.
“Alexander Povetkin is a very good boxer. And if he decides to continue his career, it’s because he has a lion's heart. We wish him the best of luck. I think he can be competitive and I think he can still beat most heavyweights,” said Sulaiman.
Luke Furman covers boxing for bokser.org