Russian light heavyweight contender Umar Salamov (21-1, 16 KOs) is issuing a challenge to newly crowned WBO Champ Eleider Alvarez and WBA ruler Dmitry Bivol. While many of the top 175-lb fighters would prefer to avoid Alvarez and Bivol, two of the hardest punchers in the division, the 24-year-old Salamov says he’s up for the challenge any time.
Both Alvarez and Bivol appeared on national television over the weekend, with Alvarez scoring an upset KO over Sergei Kovalev and Bivol defending his title with a lackluster decision over Isaac Chilemba.
“I saw their fights and I can confidently tell you that when I get my opportunity, I will dethrone both Bivol and Alvarez,” said Salamov. “I am the best light heavyweight in the world and look forward to proving it to the boxing fans by fighting the best!”
IBF #11- and WBO #15-rated Salamov was last seen in June, scoring a highlight reel ninth-round knockout over Brian Howard, live on Showtime. The impressive victory won him the vacant IBF North American Championship. In his young career, he has also already won the IBO Youth and World Light Heavyweight, WBO Youth World, European and International, and the IBF East/West Europe Light Heavyweight Championships.
“After his US debut in June, I am very confident that it’s just a matter of time before he wins a World light Heavyweight title,” said his co-promoter, Dmitriy Salita (along with Kazbek Aslambekov of KA-Promotions). “At only 24 years old, and with the amount of talent and experience he has, the sky is the limit for Umar in the light heavyweight division.”
Salamov is currently training in Detroit at the Kronk Boxing Gym. His next fight will be announced shortly.