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Dmitry Bivol plans October 12th return on Oleksandr Usyk undercard

Bivol last fought in March, beating Joe Smith Jr. by unanimous decision

CAPTION CORRECTION!!! International Boxing Day continues in Moscow Photo by Valery Sharifulin\TASS via Getty Images
Patrick Stumberg is a freelance writer for SB Nation, first joining the network in 2011 before linking up with Bad Left Hook in 2015.

Between the arrival of Gilberto Ramirez, the possibility of Sergey Kovalev vs. Canelo Alvarez, and the impending unification fight between Artur Beterbiev and Oleksandr Gvozdyk on October 18th, the light heavyweight division is hotter than ever. Despite this, WBA champion Dmitry Bivol has been weirdly quiet in 2019, not fighting since a March decision over Joe Smith Jr. According to Mike Coppinger, however, Bivol is “likely” to serve as the co-feature for Oleksandr Usyk’s October 12th heavyweight debut in Chicago.

Usyk’s still fighting TBA at the time of writing, though former kickboxing great Tyrone Spong has emerged as the frontrunner.

The 28-year old Bivol (16-0, 11 KO) has yet to face any real adversity in his professional career, and though his talent is obvious for all to see, he’s had a somewhat disappointing reign since pummeling Sullivan Barrera into submission last year. He’s coming off of three consecutive decisions over Isaac Chilemba, Jean Pascal, and the aforementioned Smith, all of whom are game but none of whom ostensibly posed a threat to him. Though I doubt they’ll scrounge up a top-notch opponent with less than two months’ notice, perhaps he’ll have a busier 2020.

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