Vitali Klitschko (43-2, 40 KO) and Wladimir Klitschko (56-3, 49 KO) have dominated the heavyweight scene in boxing for nearly a decade. The competition is considered nonexistent, according to the experts.
In steps Dereck Chisora (15-2, 9 KO), a 28-year-old British trash-talking heavyweight with the heart and speed, as well as the desire, to be the best. He gets his chance Feb. 18 against Vitali, the elder Klitschko.
Here are five reasons Chisora could pull off the upset, despite the odds against him.
Klitschko had only two fights last year. The first was against Odlanier Solis (17-1, 12 KO), a then-undefeated Cuban Olympic gold medalist. He was expected to put on a great fight, but it ended in Round 1—not because a punch, but because of a preexisting knee injury.
Then Klitschko fought highly-ranked Tomasz Adamek (44-2, 28 KO). Though Klitschko got quite a few rounds out of Adamek before stopping him in Round 10, Adamek is a former light heavyweight (175 lbs) and cruiserweight 200 (lbs), making him a small heavyweight.
Chisora will be Klitschko's first full-sized heavyweight (without a knee injury or other affliction) since facing Shannon Briggs (59-6-1, 51 KO) in 2009.
The adjustment back to facing healthy, big-sized heavyweights may spell Klitschko's downfall.
Klitschko turns 41 years old this year. No matter how young Klitschko may look or feel, he is aging.
Not everyone ages like 47-year-old Bernanrd Hopkins (52-5-2, 32 KO): slowly with time. Some people age like Roy Jones Jr. (55-8, 40 KO): quickly. Klitschko may be somewhere in between. All it takes is one fight to expose how old a fighter truly is.
The victory was not overturned, even with all the controversy that followed. Should Chisora come up short, maybe bad judging will award him for aggression.
Chisora was a victim of potentially erroneous judging in his last fight against Robert Helenius (17-0, 11 KO). Maybe fate will reward Chisora for what it didn't award him before.
He [Chisora] wants to go in and fight and to go the distance. He tries to challenge his opponent and I didn't see that in the last fight between David Haye and Wladimir Klitschko.
For years, Haye was half of the biggest fight possible in the heavyweight division: Klitschko vs. Haye. Haye put on a highly criticized performance against Wladimir Klitschko when the big fight played out.
If Vitali Klitschko respects Chisora enough to praise him like this, then he must know that Chisora is a threat. A fighter knows better than anyone else how good his opponent really is.
Haye, even in his horrendous performance, was able to crack the younger Klitschko's chin a few good times. If the elder brother is truly facing a better fighter than Haye, then he better be careful.
When fighters announce their retirement, this usually entails a loss of desire to continue. This is especially true for boxers who have been at the top of their division for as many years as Klitschko has.
Klitschko has announced that he is thinking of retirement following a strong 2012 campaign that includes Chisora.
Sugar Ray Leonard (36-3-1, 25 KO) is an infamous example of a man whose years of constant playing with retirement cost him dearly. Before any talk of retirement, Leonard's record was 32-1. He retired, returned and repeated the cycle until he was finally beaten into retirement. Leonard's post-retirement comeback record was 4-2-1.
Klitschko already retired once in 2004, with an announcement made in 2005. Since returning in 2008, Klitschko has gone undefeated. The difference is that Klitschko has faced a far weaker field than Leonard.
One thing Leonard had over Klitschko in this situation was that he was still living out his mid-to-late 30s during post-retirement. Klitschko is 40 years old already.
Chisora's speed, youth and vitality can take Klitschko by surprise. Klitschko hasn't fought a fighter under 30 since Chris Arreola (34-2, 29 KO). Youth can be the big difference.
Leonard was obliterated at 34 by a 23-year-old Terry Norris (47-9, 31 KO) in 1991.
Klitschko is skilled, big and strong, but will he be successful on Feb. 18 when he defends his title against Chisora? The answer will be found this Saturday at 4:30 PM ET on Epix and EpixHD.com.