The President of the WBC tells ESPN that Deontay Wilder will indeed have to make his mandatory title defense against Alexander Povetkin in his next outing, assuming Povetkin wins his scheduled Nov. 4th fight against Mariusz Wach.
"Wilder just fought a voluntary defense and is in line to make the mandatory defense," Sulaiman said. "The mandatory is Povetkin."
If Wilder and Povetkin are unable to strike a deal with one another, the WBC will order the fight to purse bid. Either way, the mandatory title defense tracks to be held sometime in the first quarter of 2016. For those less than impressed with Wilder's resume and recent opposition, this should be a real test for him. Povetkin is certainly no slouch, losing his only fight to Wladimir Klitschko back in 2013. Since then, Povetkin has looked pretty damn good, knocking out Manuel Charr, Carlos Takam, and "Irish" Mike Perez in succession.
Our very own Scott Christ has already written a nice synopsis of where both Wilder and Povetkin stand in relation to one another -- so not to rehash all of his points, I'll just say this mandatory title defense will be good proving grounds for both fighters. And it's always been a good thing for the sport when there's some noise being made in the heavyweight division.