Unified heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk (20-0, 13 KOs) and contender Daniel Dubois (19-1, 18 KOs) met today at a press conference held in Warsaw, Poland. On August 26, the two will clash for Usyk’s titles in Wrocław, Poland, on a PPV broadcast live on TNT Sports. With just over a month to go before both men finally meet, Big Fight Weekend ranks the top five highlights of Usyk’s career. The list consists of both amateur and professional highlights.
5. Usyk wins 2011 World Boxing Championships
While he was still an amateur boxer, Usyk took part in the 2011 World Boxing Championships held in Baku, Azerbaijan. In the 2009 edition held in Milan, Italy, he had to settle for bronze after losing in the semifinal to Egor Mekhontsev. He had a better showing in Baku as he defeated the likes of Tervel Pulev (Kubrat’s brother) and current unified light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev en route to winning gold at heavyweight (201 lbs).
4. Olympic gold
A year after his performances in Baku, Usyk won yet another gold medal. This time it was at the 2012 Olympics held in London, England. At the Beijing 2008 games, he missed out on winning a medal following a quarter-final loss to Clemente Russo. In 2012, he defeated Pulev and Beterbiev again before meeting Russo in the heavyweight (201 lbs) final. He avenged his 2008 loss to become an Olympic champion.
3. Winning first professional world title
After turning professional as a cruiserweight in 2013, Usyk worked his way up the rankings to secure a title shot in 2016. That fight was against Krzysztof Głowacki and it took place in Gdańsk, Poland. Głowacki was the more experienced pro as he had 26 bouts to his name, while Usyk only had nine. The lack of professional experience did not matter, however. Usyk won a wide unanimous decision to become the WBO cruiserweight champion. It was the first ever world title held by him as a professional.
2. Undisputed at cruiserweight
In 2018, Usyk travelled to Moscow, Russia, to take on Murat Gassiev. At the time, Gassiev held the WBA and IBF cruiserweight titles while Usyk had the WBC and WBO belts. The fight itself was the final of a competition known as the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS). In one of his most dominant performances to date, Usyk won nearly every round to claim undisputed status at cruiserweight.
1. Usyk becomes heavyweight champion
In 2019, Usyk moved up to heavyweight, claiming a stoppage victory over Chazz Witherspoon (a second cousin of two-time heavyweight champion Tim Witherspoon). Following another win at his new weight class in 2020 over Derek Chisora, Usyk finally challenged for the heavyweight titles. That fight came against unified champion Anthony Joshua in Tottenham, England, in 2021. Usyk defied the odds to defeat Joshua via unanimous decision, becoming one of the very few boxers to win world titles at cruiserweight and heavyweight. He showed that the win was no fluke as he won a split decision in their rematch in Saudi Arabia just under a year later.