Sam Peter has agreed to terms to face IBF and WBO champion Wladimir Klitschko in a heavyweight championship rematch on September 11 in Germany.
The agreement was announced last night (July 22) by Bob Arum, whose Top Rank outfit will promote the fight.
The bout is rematch to their 2005 encounter, where Klitschko survived three knockdowns to win a decision (114-111 on all cards) and hand Peter his first loss. Since then, Klitschko has made nine successful defenses with 8 knockouts. Peter has gone 10-2 since then, losing by corner stoppage to Vitali Klitschko in 2008, and by clear decision to Eddie Chambers last year.
Peter has won 4 consecutive fights since the Chambers loss, including an IBF title eliminator in March against Nagy Aguilera. His eliminator win sets up the Klitschko rematch following the second pullout of #1 contender Alexander Povetkin.
In regards to his strategy, Peter revealed that he plans on delivering any early knockout.
“Klitschko knows who won that fight. This time I am going straight in and take him out. It’s not going to last real long,” vowed the 29-year-old former titlist. “I punched hard while growing up in Nigeria. A big punch can turn around a fight real quick.”
HBO announced they would not be televising the fight prior to Povetkin’s pullout. Showtime is unable to pick up the contest due to scheduling conflicts.
Clips from the 2005 fight are below.
A promising fact to gain from this press release picture is that Peter already looks to be in good shape. Weight has been a career problem from the Nigerian Nightmare. At various times he’s ranged from the low 220s to over 260 pounds. Coming in at a healthy weight will definitely improve his chances.
Peter is also being realistic in knowing that his only chance to win is by knockout. Aside from the three knockdowns, he was out boxed in every single round. He must be aggressive and make Klitschko uncomfortable. If he doesn’t, he’ll get bashed with heavy jabs and occasional right hands to ensure a late knockout.
Can a lean, experienced Peter finally end Wladimir Klitschko’s reign?
I sincerely doubt it.
Peter may come in in better shape, but I believe his punch resistance has been considerably diminished. He took some heavy shots in their first fight, particularly in the 12th when Wladimir almost got the knockout. Against Jameel McCline, he was dropped and almost KO’d very early. And Vitali Klitschko put him in a shell almost immediately but landing a hard right hand in the first round.
Viewing how he reacted to Vitali’s shots, I don’t see Samuel Peter being able to walk through the bombs Wladimir will land. He would have to be able to take those punches in order to land his own home run shot. Couple that with the sub par head movement Peter possesses and Wladimir’s improved fundamentals, and I envision another late Klitschko TKO in a fight that has a few isolated tense moments early.
Still, it’s a decent matchup and its unfortunate Showtime cannot pick it up. As of now, fans in the U.S. will have to look for a stream that day.
Someone go hop in the DeLorean and get back Mike Tyson from ’88. That or retirement are the only way I see the Klitschko’s reign ending anytime soon.