When Wladimir Klitschko (61-3, 51 KO) defends his IBF, WBA, WBO and IBO heavyweight titles against Alex Leapai (30-4-3, 24 KO) on Saturday, April 26 on ESPN, casual and hardcore boxing fans will be treated to a marquee fight on cable.
Klitschko is one of the most dangerous men in the sport. The battle against Leapai will be his 16th title defense, and the veteran has gone a full decade since he was handed his last loss.
As for Leapai, he has strung together five wins in a row, including a huge victory over Denis Boytsov in his last fight.
The resulting battle will be one of the best fights ESPN could have imagined. Here is all the vital viewing information for Saturday’s marquee main event.
When: Saturday, April 26 at 5 p.m. ET
Where: Koenig Pilsener Arena in Germany
TV: ESPN and ESPN Deportes
Live Stream: Watch ESPN
Breaking Down the Main Event
There are many fight fans who are excited to see a huge heavyweight fight on national television, and the battle between Klitschko and Leapai will satisfy hardcore and casual boxing enthusiasts alike.
Everyone understands the power of Klitschko. Despite being 38 years old, he still possesses elite strength and accuracy in both of his hands. Using his elite striking, the Ukrainian champion has dominated the heavyweight division over the last 10 years.
While Klitschko has faced quality competition, Leapai is an unconventional opponent. After stunning Boytsov and proving his ability to dish out power, while absorbing heavy blows, he will prove to be a serious threat to the champion.
After a public training session, Leapai told Brent Read of The Australian about his mindset heading into the heavyweight title fight:
Whatever motivation he’s got ... he’s going to have to rip my heart out to beat me. This guy is no different to me. He’s just another human being—two arms, two legs and a heartbeat. On the night it comes down to who wants it more. I am telling you, I am going to beat this guy. I have always been the underdog. On Saturday night (German time), Australia, New Zealand and Samoa are going to have a new world champion.
Leapai will need all the confidence he can find because he will be facing the toughest test of his life. With brutal precision and unwavering power, Klitschko has physically dismantled each of his challengers and will do so once again against Leapai.
There is no questioning the power of Leapai, but the counterpunching ability and defensive prowess of Klitschko are extremely impressive for a man his size. If he can frustrate the challenger and wear him down, Dr. Steelhammer will gain the upper hand and dominate the middle and late rounds.
Leapai is tough enough to go the distance but not talented enough to steal the win.
Prediction: Klitschko via unanimous decision
*Stats via BoxRec.com.