By Johnny Walker
A couple of weeks ago, Teddy Atlas, boxing analyst and trainer of heavyweight contender Alexander Povetkin, announced during an episode of ESPN’s Friday Night Fights that his charge would be doing battle with former WBA heavyweight champion Ruslan Chagaev in Germany on August 27 for the “regular” WBA championship belt (Wladimir Klitschko is now the WBA “super champion”).
At that time, Atlas also announced that he would not be accompanying Povetkin to Russia to train him for the fight, as he was contracted to work for Friday Night Fights during the time period covered by the training camp. As Povetkin’s promoter, Kalle Sauerland, had previously expressed his displeasure with Atlas’s performance as trainer, it seemed that the Atlas-Povetkin connection had been severed for good.
However, during his chat session today on ESPN, boxing scribe Dan Rafael announced that Atlas will be taking a leave of absence from FNF for the rest of the season to train Povetkin. Atlas will be replaced by middleweight contender Sergio Mora as FNF boxing analyst for the remainder of the season.
Mora will take over this Friday night alongside Joe Tessitore, while Atlas heads to Russia to prepare Povetkin for his title shot.