Olympic bronze medal winner David Price has warned Anthony Joshua that he should not take Alexander Povetkin lightly.
Joshua, who holds the WBA, IBF, WBO, IBO heavyweight titles, was ordered by the World Boxing Association to make a mandatory defense against Povetkin.
There is also the possibility that Joshua will collide in a unification with WBC champion Deontay Wilder - who recently agreed to stage their showdown in the UK.
However, Joshua's promoter, Eddie Hearn of Matchroom, has cautioned that his boxer wants to fight in September - and there isn't enough time to promote a contest with Wilder for that month - and the year-end weather might make things difficult to stage it in the final months of 2018.
Considering all of that, the possibility stands that Joshua may have to face Povetkin prior to a showdown with Wilder.
“The reason he did [hurt me] is because he’s such an accurate puncher. His accuracy is unbelievable. The shot that ended the fight, not the one that put me on the floor, the one that hit me on the temple. It was a perfect shot on the temple," Price told IFL TV.
“I got caught because I was throwing with him, that is down to my own ambition I suppose. It’s the small mistakes and decisions that you make at that level that can cost you everything. He’s much better than people give him credit for but the funny thing is now with Povetkin, because I’ve given him an alright fight – albeit a short fight – and I had him hurt, all of a sudden he is sh*t in a lot of people’s eyes.
“Everyone is going to batter Povetkin now, but he has done what he’s done for a reason. He’s going to fight Anthony Joshua, Joshua is going to beat him obviously, but I wouldn’t take him lightly. Not one bit.”