Klitschko, the current IBF, WBO and WBA "super" champion, has been described as robotic, boring, destructive and useless. Depending on who you ask we are either talking about the man that has single-handedly destroyed boxing's most historic division or the man who has dominated with out equal in the division where 1 punch can be the difference between success and failure.
This coming Saturday sees Klitschko, known as "Dr Steelhammer", attempt to record the next defense of his world titles as he takes on WBO mandatory challenger Alex "The Lionheart" Leapai (30-4-3, 24).
Whilst Klitschko is known for his jab, his potent straight right and his safety first clinching Leapai is hardly known full stop.
If we ask the most hardcore of fans to mention what Leapai has done as a professional the odds are they will only be able to mention 2 of his bouts. One was his most recent victory, a stunning upset victory over the previously unbeaten Denis Boytsov and the other was his stoppage loss to the very light punching Kevin Johnson.
Although 2 years is a lot of time and Leapai has developed from his stoppage to Johnson he is still not a great fighter. He's technically limited though he good power, a winners mentality and a happiness to throw shots. On paper he's the sort of fun Heavyweight that we do tend to enjoy watching, a flawed but aggressive fighter. Against Klitschko though the flaws are magnified, the defensive lapses are taken advantage of and, in this case, a 6" height difference will be yet another issue for Leapai.
We expect to see Leapai going out to Germany to try and fight. We expect him to let his hands go happily, he'll be there to win. With a round or two though it'll become apparent to all, Leapai included, that he's up against a much better fighter, a more skilled practitioner of the sweet science and a man who has more skill with just his jab than Leapai has in his entire body.
The jab and straight right of Klitschko will control the bout from early on, the clinching, holding and wrestling will tire out Leapai and by round 5 or 6 Klitschko will be hunting a stoppage. He could prolong a slow and careful tendorising process but we imagine that Klitschko will be wanting to put on a show this time around.
(Image courtesy of TSMplug)