- Pulev vs Booker goes Saturday, November 9th at 10:00 pm EST
- Can Pulev maintain his mandatory title challenger status as recognized by the IBF?
- Can the largely unheralded Booker shake up the heavyweight hierarchy?
Kubrat Pulev vs Rydell Booker has high stakes in determining the heavyweight title picture for the new year. Multiple intriguing bouts bolster this card. The ten-round heavyweight contest goes at Chukchansi Park in Fresno, California.
Pulev is putting his mandatory challenger status on the line in this outing. He will take on a man in Booker who has previously challenged for championship hardware against James Toney. Booker is looking to jettison himself towards another crack at gold over 15 years later.
You can check out the odds for this prizefight and my analysis of the bout below.
Kubrat Pulev vs Rydell Booker Odds
Odds taken Nov. 8th.
Pulev is taking a bit of a risky fight this time out. He is the mandatory challenger for the winner of Ruiz vs Joshua II set to go in December. It’s a huge fight for Pulev and will blow up in smoke if Booker gets the W here.
He came up short in a prior title shot as the mandatory challenger when he fell to Wladimir Klitschko in 2014. Since then he has won seven in a row and has a chance at championship redemption in early 2020 if he defeats Booker. Though Booker is a seasoned pro who has been in there with some big names for important bouts, I see Pulev notching the W here.
Pulev Extends Win Streak to Eight
Booker has a cinematic backstory as he was once a promising prospect in the early 2000’s but that was derailed after 12 years of prison time for trying to sell close to 40 pounds of cocaine.
He returned to the ring in 2018 and is now 4-1 since the comeback began. The quality in competition definitely leans in the favor of Pulev though. Pulev is back after completing a sexual harassment course recently after forcing a kiss on a media member during a post-fight interview.
He scored an emphatic stoppage victory in his last bout over Bogdan Dinu on March 23 via seventh-round knockout.
— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) March 24, 2019
Despite some of his recent competition not being the most stellar, Booker is still doing his due diligence to prepare. He was recently in camp with well regarded Oleksandr Usyk for six weeks. He also went to WBC champion Deontay Wilder’s camp shortly after.
Pulev is not underestimating his opponent and realizes he is talented. Anything can happen in Boxing, Pulev is preparing accordingly, but he’s also confident that he’s one of the best heavyweights on the planet.
Pulev vs Booker Tale of the Tape
|Samuel Peter, Dereck Chisora, Hughie Fury
|Arthur Williams, Art Jimmerson, Ka-Dy King
Both men have a commensurate level of pro experience and have reaches that are almost the exact same. Both men have KO rates that float around that 50 percent mark.
Also of the two career losses Booker has, both were via decision. The aforementioned KO rates coupled with the durability of Booker lead me to believe that the judges will get involved here. I see Pulev winning via unanimous decision.
Pick: Pulev (-1800)