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David Price says Alexander Povetkin won’t risk another positive drug test

But is Price underestimating Povetkin’s resolve?

Boxing at Olympia London Photo by Leigh Dawney/Getty Images
Wil Esco is an assistant editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2014.

In an interview with ESPN, heavyweight David Price (22-4, 18 KOs) says that he firmly understands the position he’s in, being granted an opportunity to face Alexander Povetkin (33-1, 23 KOs) with a mandatory shot at Anthony Joshua at stake, so he’s not at all concerned that Povetkin will test dirty (again).

Povektin tested positive for banned substances twice within an 8-month span which scrapped his title fight with Deontay Wilder in mid-2016, and then a title eliminator with Bermane Stiverne that December.

Povektin would ultimately get a pass for those failed drug tests, but it obviously stained his reputation. So now heading into this fight, Price doesn’t think Povetkin can afford to fail another drug test, thus giving him a clear conscious that this weekend’s fight will play out on fair terms.

“Povetkin has had issues in the past but for that reason I don’t believe it will be an issue,” the Englishman told ESPN. “He’s had two positive tests and now there’s so much on the line -- the mandatory place to fight Anthony Joshua -- so I don’t think it’s an issue.

”It’s not a problem for me to think about,” he added. “Beggars can’t be choosers, I’m being given the opportunity when I really need it and I don’t think he will risk another positive test.”

Price would go on to acknowledge that he’s not even in a position to make demands or contract stipulations for this fight in case things go awry, so he’s just taking it as it is.

Price is most recently coming off a decision win over Kamil Sokolowski in December, one fight removed from a knockout loss to Christian Hammer in February 2017. And in this fight Price is hoping to give Povetkin some of the same problems that Wladimir Klitschko did, using his height advantage to keep Povetkin from landing clean shots. That’s all in theory, though, and we’ll see in just a couple of days if he can effectively enact that plan.

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