It was officially announced today that IBF/WBO heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko (53-3, 47 KO’s) will be defending his titles against American challenger Eddie Chambers (35-1, 18 KO’s) on March 20th at the ESPRIT arena, Düsseldorf, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany.

Boxing fans have known for months that Wladimir, 33, will be facing Chambers next. The fight isn’t exactly being looked forward to by many fans, because it, at least on paper, seems to be another case of a mismatch between Klitschko and one of his opponents.

Chambers might be even more out of his league than some of Wladimir’s recent opponents because of his lack of size and power. At 6’1” 208, Chambers is even smaller than Chris Byrd, an old nemesis of Wladimir, who the Ukrainian easily defeated twice. You can expect this to be an easy fight as well for Wladimir, simply because Chambers doesn’t have the size or the knockout punch to make this fight interesting.

You can give Chambers a small chance. Wladimir, like his brother World Boxing Council heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko, is getting up there in age. Wladimir will be 34 on March 25th. That may or may not be something to worry about, but when a fighter gets to their mid 30s, they’re more prone to suffering serious injuries of one kind of another.

In Wladimir’s case, he’s coming off shoulder surgery on his left shoulder. It’s since healed but it’s something to keep an eye on for this fight with Chambers, as well as for the training camp.

Chambers, 27, has beaten Samuel Peter and 6’7” Alexander Dimitrenko in his last two fights, easily Chambers’ best two wins of his career. Chambers looked good in both fights, especially the Dimitrenko bout. Chambers stripped off some extra weight before his fight with Dimitrenko and it seemed to help him fight harder later in the bout.

Chambers, who up until then had looked like a fat cruiserweight, took off 15 pounds of fat, and came into the Dimitrenko bout weighing a slim 208. Although Chambers was out-weighed by over 40 pounds by the much bigger Dimitrenko, Chambers was able to stay in close to Dimitrenko and effectively smother his offense.

It was a perfect strategy by Chambers who had a lot of help from Dimitrenko because he fought a really stupid fight. Chambers will no doubt be trying to the same strategy against the 6’6” 245 pound Klitschko on March 20th. It might not work out as well for Chambers, though, because Wladimir doesn’t even try to fight on the inside, unlike Dimitrenko. Klitschko will either clinch Chambers or move away from him if Chambers attempts to take the fight to the inside.

If Chambers is unable to stay in close against Wladimir, then he has effectively no chance of beating him. On the outside, Wladimir will be able to spear Chambers with his powerful jab and set him up for left hooks and right hands. If Wladimir can nail Chambers with an especially hard left hook or right hand, the fight could end as suddenly as some of Klitschko’s other fights. Chambers will have to find a way inside Wladimir’s huge six inch reach advantage for him to land any of his shots. It’s hard to see Chambers having much look at getting near Wladimir enough to do anything.

By Dave Lahr,


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